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

See below for information about the prize.


Remembering the Grandmothers: The International Movement to Commemorate the Survivors of Militarized Sexual Abuse in the Asia-Pacific War
The New ‘Heart of Darkness’: Exploring Images of Africa in Wolf Warrior 2 (2017)
Better City, Better Life? Urban Modernity at the Shanghai Expo
After Withdrawal from the IWC: The Future of Japanese Whaling
The Unmaking of an American
Abe's Military Base Plan for Okinawa Sinking in Mayonnaise: Implications for the U.S. Court and IUCN
Reinventing the Japan Times: How Japan’s oldest English-language newspaper tacked right
GI, Veteran, and POW Voices of Conscience: Recovering the Voices of GI Resistance to the War in Vietnam
An Artificial Heart
The Recent Merging of Anti-Okinawa and Anti-Korean Hate in the Japanese Mass Media
Japan and the United States: Reflections on War, Empire, Race and Culture
China’s Rising Profile in Latin America
Governance and the Cycle of Violence in Papua: The Nduga Crisis¹
A Multifaceted Fukushima—Trauma and Memory in Ōnobu Pelican’s Kiruannya and U-ko
A Famous Flower in Mountain Seclusion 山間の名花
“It Ain’t Over ‘Till It’s Over”: Reflections on the Okinawan Anti-Base Resistance
Will the Dormant Volcano Erupt Again? Mt. Paektu and Contemporary Sino-Korean Relations
China’s Long Term Trade and Currency Goals: The Belt & Road Initiative
Is Japan’s Foreign Workforce Really Growing Rapidly? Understanding the Government Statistics Behind the Myth
The Henoko Base Project: Okinawa’s Tamaki Government at the Brink
Violent Paternalism: On the Banality of Uyghur Unfreedom
More Reasons Why a New Base Must Not/Cannot Be Built at Henoko, Okinawa
Grappling with Clientelism: The Japanese State and Okinawa under Abe Shinzo
A New Governor and a New Era for Okinawa Reflections of an All-Okinawa Activist
South Korea’s Candlelight Revolution and the Future of the Korean Peninsula
Chinggis Khan on Film: Globalization, Nationalism, and Historical Revisionism
“Sold For 40 Yen”: Nishioka Tsutomu’s “Evidence” on the “Comfort Women” Proven Groundless
A War Against Garbage in Postwar Japan
China: The Emergence of the Petroyuan and the Challenge to US Dollar Hegemony
Touring the American empire of bases with the Marines
Civic Lawmaking: The Case of the Domestic Violence Movement in Japan
Performing Ethnic Harmony: The Japanese Government’s Plans for a New Ainu Law
Ghosts of Hiroshima
Hidaka Rokuro, 1917-2018 – The Life and Times of an Embattled Japanese Intellectual
The Volunteer: A story by Chō Chin-bo
The Sino-American Innovation Dilemma: A Conflict with Deep Roots and Tough Solutions
The Constitution Must Be Defended: Thoughts on the Constitution’s Role in Japan’s Postwar Democracy
Dissecting the Wave of Books on Nippon Kaigi, the Rightwing Mass Movement that Threatens Japan’s Future
The Oral History of a Japanese Soldier in Manchuria
Japan’s Integrated Approach to Human Security
“Education and Patriotism” (Kyōiku to aikoku). A Documentary
To Hell with Happy Endings! An Anti-School Manifesto
China’s Belt and Road as a Conduit for Clean Power Projects Around the World
Ecological civilization Politics and Governance in Hangzhou: New pathways to green urban development?
Lifting The Darkness: American and Vietnamese War Poets
A New Interpretation of the Bakufu’s Refusal to Open the Ryukyus to Commodore Perry¹
The Abe State and Okinawan Protest – High Noon 2018
Prologue to the Face of Jizo
Fukushima, Media, Democracy: The Promise of Documentary Film
Japan’s 3.11 Nuclear Disaster and the State of Exception: Notes on Kamanaka’s Interview and Two Recent Films

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

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