Summary in English, January & February 2021

During Jan-Feb 2021 four articles appeared in the blog.

The subject of the first article:
Durian Sukegawa: Tokuen resepti. Tr. by Raisa Porrasmaa. Japanese: An (あん). English: Sweet Bean Paste. Known also as Naomi Kawase´s film by the name of Sweet Bean.

The novel tells the story of a middle-aged man with troubled past and an old lady who is able to make superb bean paste. Their lives cross and a heart warming story evolves. The book also reveals a piece of Japanese history not so well known of how leprosy patients were treated until recent times.
The narration is full of Japanese flavor with cherry blossoms and it also is a powerful story of the meaning of friendship. If you wish to read my review of the novel, (with the help of Google Translate, all you need to do, is to click English on the right side bar of the blog page), open the link:

The second article is an overall review of all translations of Japanese literature into Finnish. It starts from the end of the 19th century and continues until the present day, recording the history of the translation work. The graph above shows the number of translations in each decade. The translations represent quite well the different periods and genres of Japanese literature, while the total number of actual works is close to 200. In addition to that, translations have been published in forms other than books. Earlier the translations of Japanese works into Finnish were made from other Western translations, but today translating directly from Japanese into Finnish is the norm. Read more:

The third article provides insight to the name of the blog, 夢の浮橋, Yume no ukihashi, The floating bridge of dreams. The phrase is a central and inspirational metaphor in Japanese literature and culture, referring to the nature of human relationships as well as the nature of human life in general. Read more:

The subject of the fourth article:
Troll: Mestarietsivä Peppunen. Tr. by Mayu Saaritsa. Japanese: Oshiri tantei (おしりたんてい), English: The Butt Detective.

In January 2021 already the fifth book of this famous children´s detective series was published in Finnish. Translating children´s books has challenges of its own, but the Finnish translator has succeeded well in conveying the charm of the original. Read the interview of the translator: