Decision-Making and Disambiguation in Japanese-to-English Literary Translation: An Application of Game Theory

IAFOR Journal of Arts & Humanities. 2012;1(1):59-81 DOI 10.22492/ijah.1.1.04


Journal Homepage

Journal Title: IAFOR Journal of Arts & Humanities

ISSN: 2187-0616 (Online)

Publisher:  The International Academic Forum

LCC Subject Category: Fine Arts: Arts in general | General Works: History of scholarship and learning. The humanities

Country of publisher: Japan

Language of fulltext: English

Full-text formats available: PDF



Richard Donovan (Nagoya University of Foreign Studies, Japan)


Double blind peer review

Editorial Board

Instructions for authors

Time From Submission to Publication: 12 weeks


Abstract | Full Text

Jiří Levý’s 1966 paper "Translation as a Decision Process" applied game theory to translation studies in an attempt to characterise and explain the decision-making processes of the translator and the linguistic and socio-cultural forces that inform these processes. The current paper employs some of his conclusions in the context of Japanese-to-English literary translation, addressing in particular the vexed issue of disambiguation. It draws upon examples from Kawabata Yasunari’s novella Izu no odoriko, and its published English translations The Izu Dancer by Edward G. Seidensticker and The Dancing Girl of Izu by J. Martin Holman.