Learning through Translating: ブラックジャックによろしく Manga

Actually I see it as 4 exercices in one:

  • reading (without furigana)
  • writing (as we have to retranscribe the sentences)
  • grammar and meaning understanding
  • (and dicionnary searching for words, quite often too)
  • translating (at least for me) comes last; and quite often the English rendering is a bit odd (because the goal is to show that the Japanese sentence has been understood)

It would be hard to put that on a title… maybe simple “Japanese language exercises” ?

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I’m not a fan of “translation” either because the objective isn’t accuracy where people are meant to argue over the best possible translation.

I think “Japanese language exercises” is too vague personally but I’ll add it in the votes.

From what I understand “writing” involves some writer agency, not mere transcription like we’re doing. Like when you put that link about つぽい and you wrote in Japanese, to me, that’s the idea of writing. Just my two cents.

The thing is that writing in Japanese is not as straightforward as doing it in a language using the latin alphabet. There are extra skills involved and needed.
Either you have to write phonetically (in romanization or kana) and be able to select the right kanji; or write by hand correctly enough so the input method recognizes it.

“Typing (or handwriting) exercise” then.

At least personally, I enjoy that extra thing, having to retype the sentences (it also forces me to better read them; to try to remember the reading of words or kanji I understand, but to type them I need to know the reading; on the other hand also, that makes me try to guess the reading of words or kanji I don’t know; without the need to type, I would just search for them by shape/radical, but the typing requires an extra effort/reflection on them).

This is a bit of ‘sales tactic’ kinda title, but how about ‘learning through translation’ followed by the manga title? I think that makes it clear that we’re not professionals, and so we don’t expect the best/most accurate translation, as long as the translations are correct. That title should also express the fact that our main objective is to learn. Also, I think ‘translating’ actually covers all the exercises that @YanagiPablo identified, since in order to translation, you need to be able to read, write, understand grammar and meaning (maybe with the help of a dictionary), and then put a new sentence together at the end.

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第5話 外科と内科と医局と斉藤

Episode 5, Surgery, Internists, Departments, and Saito

We are currently at page 3

Places and names↓
  • 斉藤 英二郎 (さいとう えいじろう): the main character. He is an idealist who wants to be a doctor to help people as opposed to become rich.
  • 永禄大学: the Eiroku (or Eternal Fortune) university, where Saitou graduated. Abbreviation: 永大.
  • 誠同病院: Seidou hospital, a private hospital where Saitou did part-time job at night (on Episode 1). It paid well but was in conflict with Saitou’s values and beliefs.
  • 服部 脩(はっとり おさむ): director of Seidou hospital.
  • 牛田 克雄(うしだ かつお): doctor that worked at night at Seidou hospital. He told (on Ep.1) Saitou about how that hospital prefers traffic accidentees as their treatment is not regulated and can be billed four times more. And tries to get back in contact with Saitou, by phone (Ep.2) then by letter (Ep.3).
  • 出久根 邦弥(でくね くにや): fellow intern that (Ep.2 & 3) trains with Saitou.
  • 第一外科 : 1st surgery department. Eiroku U. follows the “super rotate” method, in which interns train on various different services in rotation; at Ep. 2 & 3 Saitou trains here.
  • 春日部 一郎(かすかべ いちろう): nicknamed “God’s hands”, is a professor at the Eiroku University hospital that just do initial incisions, and otherwise is interested only in study of eels. He also likes to receive money from patient’s family, even knowing (but not telling) that treatment is useless.
  • 白鳥 貴久(しらとり たかひさ): doctor at the 1st surgery department. He is the instructor of Saitou and Dekune. He doesn’t oppose his superior’s corruption, because he wants to gain an upper position in order to change things.
  • 金子 敏夫(かねこ としお): a 75 year old person that got the surgery (Ep.2). Saitou discover that the surgery was done only to get money from the family, without hope of success (Ep.3.). Saitou requests from Pr. Shiratori to resume however the life preserving treatment, and tries to save the patient’s life, but unsuccessfully (Ep.4).

As the salary from the University affiliated hospital is not enough, and as the morality of such hospital is no better than the one from Seidou hospital, Saitou decides to get back to work there, as it gives higher pay.

The story so far : page by page↓

Each dropdown section reveals the original Japanese text, and its interpretation into English, on those pages
(click on the letter/number in front of each text to go to the post(s) with full details on analyzing the text)

  • 1 : Narrator: 熱海温泉
    Atami hot springs
  • 2, 3, 4 : (bust): 第十一代主任教授
    11th chairperson
    Dr. Kasukabe Ichirô
    (some women setting the busts): ねえ こんな銅像並べて何が始まるのかしら…
    Hee, we are lining those bronze busts, I wonder what will start
    ホラあれよーっ 今日は例の永大の…
    It’s today, that E.U. big thing…

The Manga Available Online for Free
Episode 5 : 第5話 外科と内科と医局と斉藤
Jisho: dictionary

Note: this episode 5 had also been used at Wasabi site for Learn Japanese from Manga 1-5-1.
However, try doing the exercises without looking there; you can compare after then, to see how good (or not) these exercises are.