Thursday, March 29th, 2018...3:38 pmMarissa

Yoko Tawada Reading

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After attending the Yoko Tawada reading, I was fascinated by her 2o poems about being in Japan after the 2011 Nuclear Crisis. I thought it was interesting that she read the poems in Japanese because as she said in class, these memories happened in Japanese so she wrote the poems in Japanese. She had some English or German translations that went along with the poems. The final two pieces of paper that they were putting on the string were blank. I think that this was to show that there is so much more to write about these moments and that these moments were not over.

Tawada also wrote poems with lines of Shakespeare in her poems that I thought were fascinated. Afterwards, she talked about the way that translation of some of her poems in different languages equated to bad words in other languages. She talked about the way that when she read one of her poems that was in Japanese in German, they took the word as a swear instead of its actually connotation. Also, she talked about the way that the English sounds of “l” and “r” confused her. I thought that it was very interesting that Tawada speaks 5 different languages.¬†Also, I enjoyed how some of the poems that she talked about had the same uses of animals that we say in her short stories and poems.

Overall, I really enjoyed the way that she incorporated more than three languages into her performance.

1 Comment

  •   Professor Seiler
    April 3rd, 2018 at 4:35 pm

    Marissa–I’m so glad you were able to attend Tawada’s performance. I’m with you: I was so taken with her riffs on and unravellings of lines from Shakespeare and other writers….

    One clarification: Tawada actually wrote the short poems on Fukushima, based on interviews with survivors, in German. In the Q&A she described feeling like she needed more distance from the stories people shared.

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