The ceremony for the award of the Suga Atsuko prize for translation will be held at 18:30 on 13 November in the Umberto Agnelli auditorium of the Italian Cultural Institute in Tokyo, which has organised the event. The prize for the translation of Italian works into Japanese was instituted this year and is dedicated to the celebrated Japanese translator and Italian scholar, Suga Atsuko (Hyōgo 1929-Tōkyō 1998). It is intended to be a continuation of the Pico della Mirandola Prize, which ceased to be awarded in 2007. According to the Cultural Institute, the works in competition for the prize, published between January 2012 and June 2014, were examined by a panel of experts chaired by Wada Tadahiko (professor of Italian Studies at the Graduate Schoolof Global Studies of the Tokyo University of Foreign Studies), whose members included: Okada Atsushi, Kimura Eiichi, Shibata Motoyuki and Yomota Inuhiko. Ambassador of Italy to Japan Domenico Giorgi will be on hand for the award ceremony.
The Suga Atsuko prize
After graduating from the Sorbonne in Paris, Sugo Atsuko travelled to Italy to study Italian literature and undertook the translation several of Japan’s major writers’ works into Italian (such as Tanizaki Junichirō, Inoue Yasushi and Kawabata Yasunari). An anthology of her translations of modern Japanese writers was published in 1964, and was one of the first and most successful efforts to offer the Italian reading public a vast panorama of Japanese 20th century narrative. After returning to Japan in 1971, Atsuko taught Italian literature and later comparative literature, as well as translating Italian novels into Japanese, in this way playing the same delicate role of cultural mediator in her own country.