Hi! J here. This didn’t need to be answered but I will choose to address this criticism. I personally use both ways interchangeably to refer her name but I think it is a bit harsh to say that it’s backwards for fans to keep her name in the original form with the honorific. I know where you are coming from and I completely understand your view but I personally believe fans love her and what she does, so their and our use of the non-switching form of her name (and character names) is done with respect and without intent to dehumanize. I speak on behalf of those fans as well because I firmly believe that they wouldn’t use that term in such a way. We try keep translations as close as possible to the original so maybe that is why you can see that we use the last name - first name basis in most of our translations. It’s not our prerogative to say what’s disrespectful or not but if you took offence at our translations, we are sorry but we would like to remind you that we are amateurs,and I’m not sure if you are a native speaker or not but we are still trying to master the language and the nuances that come with it. Such as the one you brought up with us.
In my experience, I have addressed my “superiors” with such a format with the full name (last name/ first name basis) plus a honorific but had shortened it to a last name plus honorific when I got to know them, even when I was conversing in English. Honestly, this is the first time I’ve heard of this and it may be ignorance but I have never gotten flack for using the proper way of saying a Japanese name towards a native speaker in an English speaking context. We will take your suggestion into consideration.
- Kind regards
L and J
L here. I want to add my own 2 cents on this topic as J was quite taken back when she received this message and told me of this.
We are both from asian heritage, where when we tell someone our name in that culture we put our last name then first name. This isn’t anything new in most other asian cultures, to my knowledge. (Korean, Chinese to name some)
I know some mangas like to put first name, last time when they translate, but quite honestly does it really matter? We prefer to do it last name first time, because:
1) We want to keep the originality which brings me to my second point…
2) It’s authentic. In the Japanese culture, this is their way of life. They’ve always used a last name-first name basis when referring to each other and all we’re doing is honouring that.
If anon is so worried about dehumanizing Japanese names when we translate it as last name/first name, I implore them to ask any Japanese, Korean, Chinese, Vietnamese or any other cultures who use this name basis, the question “Do you feel dehumanized when I call your last name first?”
I certainly don’t.
I just want to add has anyone received any criticism for using last name - first name in a culture that has similar rules like this, from a native speaker? Because that in itself is surprising to me.
I would like to add on a few other things to this post. Last name-First name orders are VERY common in Asian cultures and is not just exclusive to Japanese culture. My Chinese name is written in that order as well. Anon’s offense at that is the first time I’ve ever heard of name order being “regressive” or “dehumanising” which is surprising and bordering on ridiculous to me because it just isn’t? It’s how we write our names and so it’d be respectful to refer to a person as such. But, to suggest that we change it to suit another culture’s context (specifically western) then THAT’s the most disrespectful thing I’ve seen.
As an additional note, Asian cultures don’t commonly refer to these names as last or first. Last names are usually refered to as “family names” while our first names would be “given names”. In that manner, it would be like introducing ourselves as someone from this family, and were given this name, thus last-first name order. Names said in full are often used in regards to someone you’re unfamiliar with and/or want to show respect. & more often than not, it also reflects to what extent you’re close to that person.
I’ve read officially licensed manga where last names are literally dropped in place of first names for the sake of western localisation and it takes away the nuances of the characters’ relationships with one another. For instance, in Mars, Kira doesn’t actually refer to Rei by his first name until much later in the manga. She initially refers to him by Kashino-kun all the way until when they sleep together the first time and he asks her to call him by his first name. Because Tokyopop immediately replaced everything to a first name basis, the depth of how much Kira and Rei’s relationship grew is less profound. In the Sailor Moon manga, Mamoru calls Usagi “Usako” for the first time and she’s literally over the moon about it and decides to call him Mamo-chan! This of course doesn’t translate across the manga and the nuance is yet again, gone. Point being, names (more specifically the way names are used) are a huge deal in some cultures and in manga, it can be used as a significant plot point, and trying to westernise everything is pretty much taking a huge shit on the culture you’re trying not to dehumanise/disrespect in the first place.
everyone’s said everything there is to say already, but i just want to point out that the anon who asked this question is clearly a non-native speaker. tk i don’t think they speak much japanese at all lol. bc this “(like how that one asker said “yamamori mika-sensei”, inappropriate in regard to the sensei honorific)” is just… wrong? like idk what you mean by appropriate usage of 先生 but uh it’s kind of normal to say it like this lol. what do u think is the appropriate way, yamamori-sensei mika??? you CAN put an honorific after someone’s full name u know, like it’s perfectly fine if i were to say yamamori mika-san…
and most importantly, if anon speaks any decent level of japanese they’d probably be passingly familiar with the culture, certainly familiar enough to know that japanese people (that i’ve noticed; obviously not being japanese myself i’ll defer to a native speaker if corrected) don’t think it’s at all dehumanising to be referred to in the way that they are in their home country. i mean like many of them don’t mind if foreigners call them by their given name, but that’s a case of them accepting it because it is YOUR culture, not because it’s theirs, and definitely not because they’d prefer it to be that way.
There ARE ACTUAL REAL MEN OUT THERE??!
THAT RESPECT WOMEN?
THAT ACCEPT “no” FOR AN ANSWER?
Quick, reblog this everywhere so we can learn and grow as a species!
Exactly the type of response guys should give when girls say no to anything, from dates-to sex.