How getting more information from the creators influenced the translation process? How did you reflect on her comments when revising your draft?

Kerry: Having information from the creators definitely had an impact on our revision process. There were a lot of latent metaphors (like when the protagonist sinks into the bathtub, it is a metaphor for the womb, and so on) that we did not recognize until they were revealed to us. This background knowledge helped us to understand the overall tone and theme of the film, and therefore influenced our choices in crafting the translation.

Ray: It is really interesting to read information from the creators. As the old saying goes, “there are a thousand Hamlets in a thousand people’s eyes,” but having information from the creators points out the “real” Hamlet to us. It’s convenient, because now we don’t have to guess their intention of creating the video and analyze the theme on our own. We have the “right” answer. We don’t need to worry about if our translation, by adding our understanding to the video, may distort what the creators tend to convey through their work.

Yena: It is very interesting for me to get information from the creator of the video, because I can learn about the creator’s thought processes. This time, not only was I able to get to know the creator’s thoughts, I also learned about the “double meaning” of a sentence that we have not realized. 

Sarah: Without the knowledge of the creator, I think it can be easy for the translator to apply their own interpretation (which may differ from the creator’s intent) to the translation, which may cause the work to lose some of its essence. Having input on the metaphors in the film allowed us to better understand the intended meaning and apply that to our translation.

Eika: By getting information from the creator, hidden points that we did not include were highlighted. By having more knowledge about the dialogue, I reflected on her comments by thinking about how English words can have a double meaning as well. In order to convey the message that the creator wanted, we needed to find an equivalent, and show both sides of a certain word. Even though there was no exact word that conveyed the same meaning, we were able to find a close alternative to encompass what the author put into the dialogue.

Ayumi: Hearing the subtext that the creators intended was illuminating, and it also complicated the process of translation. It forced us to consider new angles and depths of meaning in the same film that we had already become familiar with and formed our own opinions about. It added another challenging, enriching element of group-work to this project.

Quinn: For the sections where we had creator input, it influenced it a lot. I think the fact that we were able to get information on the creative process and intent behind the project was great and particularly unique to this experience—usually, you don’t get that kind of insight. It was especially useful for scenes/lines where we just didn’t know what exactly was going on, like when Yukari says, 「あーーーいたい」 and her friend responds, 「だれに?」 I think we were all surprised to learn that 「あーーーいたい」  could mean, “Ah, it hurts,” or, “(I) want to meet _____.” In that sense, it definitely influenced our approach.