brandon.

坊ちゃん Botchan

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I’m currently reading Natsume Souseki’s Botchan. The story’s about a young Tokyoite who takes a job teaching middle school math in Matsuyama. The guy who did the new translation talked about how Botchan is beloved because of its main character, who unlike most Japanese, bucks the system, and has little worry about how the rest of society views him. The book is rather slow pace, and largely uneventful, but it is entertaining. I enjoy reading about the trials and tribulations of this teacher because his world view is much more like that of a foreigner than a typical Japanese. It’s refreshing considering I myself am a teacher in a place that, at times, seems completely ridiculous to me. I do recommend this book if you’re at all interested in Japanese literature, and I feel that I should have read this quite a long time ago. The bright side of my reading it this late, however, is that I read this newer, and in my opinion, much more readable translation this Japanese-school reading list classic.

Apparently, this new English translation will be available in the US in May 2007. This new English version was first published in Japan, believe it or not.

botchan

今は夏目漱石の坊ちゃんを読んでいる。確かにみんなは坊ちゃんの話がよく知っているね。このポストの英語版で話を説明したけど、日本語版がそんな説明要らないだろう。坊ちゃんはね、ちょっと外国人の英会話の教師の気持ちに似ているよ。僕らはこの国でたまに日本のやり方が変だとを思うよ。だから、坊ちゃんは松山の中学校の先生たちのやり方も考え方も不思議だと思うのはよくわかるよ。やっと読んでよかったよ。昔に心を読んだけど、今までほかの夏目漱石の小説を読んでなかった。

僕の勉強の為に坊ちゃんの印象を書いてくださいね。

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Written by Brandon

March 13, 2007 at 12:14 am

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