Articles

Reading Japanese Advertising: Print to TV

John L. McCreery

In his second article about Japanese advertising, John McCreery turns to the medium of television, which has unique possibilities not found in print advertising.

In the last issue of the SWET Newsletter, I talked generally about how to read Japanese ads and illustrated the approach I advocate by looking at the... more

Kanji Core Meanings, Software Lexicons

by Lynne E. Riggs

Launching “SWET on Saturdays,” Jack Halpern told how one student of Japanese wound up creating a Japanese-English character dictionary and massive Chinese, Japanese, and Korean lexical databases now used to aid Internet search engines.

Starting with an encounter with a Japanese language textbook on an Israeli... more

Reading Japanese Advertising

by John L. McCreery

What does it mean to understand an ad? And what specifically does it mean to understand a Japanese ad? The ads we examine are more than an opportunity to learn about Japanese advertising; they are also an opportunity to learn something about the society in which those ads were produced.

When asked if I might be... more

The Heyday of Culture Books

by Lynne Riggs

Kim Schuefftan’s claim that he has been in Japan from Jōmon 3 is easily betrayed by his youthful smile and ruddy complexion. A few gray hairs and stories of books now considered classics in the world of publishing on Japan advise us that he is a senpai par excellence. Actually, he came to Japan in 1963. Starting out as a... more

What’s in a Page?

by Lynne E. Riggs

FAQ corner
Setting Your Units of Charge

What’s in a page? 250 English words, 350 words, 200 words, 25 lines, 2000 characters, 400 characters, 200 characters, 1200 characters . . .

All of these, and others, are commonly encountered “standard” pages, by one measure or other. Translators, editors, proofreaders,... more

How Splitting Wood With an Axe is a Lot Like Translating

by Richard Sadowsky (professional translator living on Awaji Island)

  • Thin pieces don't have to be hit hard, just in the right spot.
  • You get thirsty after doing it for a while.
  • Some wood is soft, some is hard.
  • It helps to know which is which.
  • A piece has to be stood up and positioned for each swing.
  • If you've... more