Call for Applications: SOAS Translation Workshop in Japanese Studies

Workshop Dates: 17 – 21 September 2012

Application Deadline: 15 March 2012

Location: School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London

Eligibility: Fulltime post-graduate students working on a Japan-related degree. Advanced English and Japanese language skills required.

Convenor: Dr. Christopher Gerteis


The School for Oriental and African Studies, with support from the Nippon Foundation, will host a one week intensive translation workshop from 17 to 21 September 2012. The workshop is open to post-graduate students in the humanities and social sciences who seek to further develop advanced Japanese-to-English translation skills. Fulltime post-graduate students working on a Japan-related degree, regardless of citizenship, are welcome to apply.

The workshop is designed to develop advanced skills particular to translating scholarly work from first draft to final publication. In order to provide the optimum opportunity to produce first-class work, participants will be expected to complete a full draft of their translation assignment, which will be a long selection from one of several books being translated this year, in advance of the workshop week.

Participants will work in teams to critique and revise their translation under the guidance of Japanese Studies faculty from the social sciences and humanities. The workshop experience will include roundtable discussions of general difficulties in translation; small group discussions based on broad disciplinary distinctions to particular translations; and one-on-one sessions between students and faculty. Participants will receive a modest bursary, student hall (dormitory) accommodations, and reimbursement for economy transport to and from London. Participants are expected to have read and prepared remarks on the work of the other members of their translation team prior to arriving in London.

Applicants should not propose a particular article or book for translation. Translation assignments will be selected by the workshop organizers and sent to each participant after acceptance. Applicants should submit a cover letter summarizing their particular interests and reasons for wanting to participate in the workshop, a current CV, and a letter of reference attesting to their scholarly potential and advanced reading and writing levels in Japanese and English. Post-graduate training in relevant discipline, and or equivalent professional experience preferred. Applications must be submitted via email to by the application deadline (ONLY electronic applications will be considered). Letters of recommendation attesting to the applicant’s language skills and scholarly potential should be sent via confidential email to or by post direct to Dr. Christopher Gerteis, Department of History, School of Oriental and African Studies, Thornhaugh Street, London WC1H 0XG, United Kingdom.

All application materials must be received by 15 March 2012. Successful candidates will be notified during the week of 15 April 2012.

About Paula

Paula lives in the vortex of academic life. She studies medieval Japanese history.
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