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The 2019 Kyoko Selden Memorial Translation Prize in Japanese Literature, Thought, and Society

The Department of Asian Studies at Cornell University is pleased to announce the 2019 prize honoring the life and work of our colleague, Kyoko Selden. The prize will pay homage to the finest achievements in Japanese literature, thought, and society through the medium of translation. Kyoko Selden's translations and writings ranged widely across such realms as Japanese women writers, Japanese art and aesthetics, the atomic bomb experience, Ainu and Okinawan life and culture, historical and contemporary literature, poetry and prose, and early education (the Suzuki method). Recognizing the breadth of Japanese writings, classical and contemporary, and with the aim of making such materials more widely available, we ask that prize submissions be of unpublished translations. Collaborative translations are welcomed. In order to encourage classroom use and wide dissemination of the winning entries, prize-winning translations will be made freely available on the web. The winning translations will be published online at The Asia-Pacific Journal: Japan Focus.

Prize selections will take into account both the quality of the translation and the significance of the original work. In cases where a text already published in English is deemed worthy of retranslation, new translations of significant texts are accepted (please provide date and place of earlier publication). Applicants should submit the following hard copies to the Kyoko Selden Memorial Translation Prize, Department of Asian Studies, 350 Rockefeller Hall, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853:

  • 1 copy of an unpublished translation
  • 1 copy of a statement of up to 1,000 words explaining the significance of the text. Although we do not require that the translator has already obtained permission to publish the translation from the copyright holder, please include in the statement information about whether preliminary inquiries have been made or whether or not the work is in the public domain.
  • 1 printed copy of the original Japanese text
  • A brief c.v. of the translator
  • In addition, please send electronic copies of all the above as attachments to seldenprize@cornell.edu.

The maximum length of a submission is 20,000 words. In case

of translation of longer works, submit an excerpt of up to 20,000 words. Repeat submissions are welcomed. Please note that

the closing date for the prize competition this year will be August 1, 2019. For the 2019 competition, one prize of $1,500 will be awarded in two different categories:

1) to an already published translator; 2) to an unpublished translator. The winners will be informed by November 1, 2019.

For further information, please visit the Asian Studies website or send questions to seldenprize@cornell.edu.

August 01, 2008

The Korean War Mass Graves
Crimes, Concealment and South Korea's Truth and Reconciliation Commission
August Nuclear Thoughts: the New Proliferation (Available in Korean)
Takeshima/Tokto, Nationalism and Reconciliation: Who is smiling at the latest row?
Toward the Abolition of Nuclear War: Hiroshima and Nagasaki Declarations
Dangerous Islands: Japan, Korea, and the United States
How A Mock Trial Could Turn Victory into Defeat on North Korea's Nuclear Arms
Rice and Circus in East Timor [available in Portugese]
Myth and Fact in Northeast Asia's History Textbook Controversies
US Bases, Japan and the Reality of Okinawa as a Military Colony
War in the Caucasus and the Global Repositioning of China, Germany, Russia and the US
Nanjing's Massacre Memorial: Renovating War Memory in Nanjing and Tokyo
The Hearts of Children: Morality, Patriotism, and the New Curricular Guidelines
Living With the Nightmare of Planes and Aircraft Carriers at U.S. Bases in Japan: Upgrading Iwakuni and Yokosuka
Migrants, Subjects, Citizens: Comparative Perspectives on Nationality in the Prewar Japanese Empire
Fiji's Mercenary Military, the US and the Politics of Coup D'etat
Chinese Dams and the Great Mekong Floods of 2008
The Coming Crisis in Finance and Energy: Korea as a solution for East Asia?