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Okinawa 1945: The Stalingrad of the Pacific

Okinawa 1945: The Stalingrad of the Pacific
Autor: George Feifer
Data publikacji: 2004-04-00
ISBN: 9780752433240
Język: angielski
Wymiary: 22.8 x 15.2 x 3.4 cm
Oprawa: miękka
Liczba stron: 223
Produkt chwilowo niedostępny.

Opis produktu:

The battle of Okinawa was the bloodiest of the Pacific war. This book offers a stunning account of the campaign, told at the level of the participants themselves, with the stories of three individuals running through the entire account. 448 pages. Paperback reprint


This book tries to project the battle of Okinawa via 3 angles, the Japanese, the Americans and the people on Okinawa. This idea sounds great, and the books is quite well written, but I doubt the reliability of the accuracy of the Japanese events due to obvious translation problems. Just to list a few of the mistakes:

p.56, "...the Chinese name for [Okinawa] affirmed: Shurei no kuni". Shurei no kuni is Japanese. It's not Chinese.

p.84 "... Kwantung Army (named for Canton Province)..." This is NOT what the name means or how it came about. Kwantung (or actually in Japanese it's kantou) means to the east of the gates and is either used to describe the north-east of China (then also called Manchuria) or the east of Japan (basically east of Osaka). Canton province happens to be in the South of China, also called Guangdong. Japan uses the prefecture system, not the province system. This army is extremely important in WWII history in Asia as this is the army that was stationed in Manchuria after the Russian-Japanese war and was responsible for much of the invasion of China's north-east. Now if something this significant was wrong, how am I to trust anything that has been translated in the book?

p.61, "The Loochoo Islands - Chinese for the characters pronounced Ryukyu in Japanese - ... transliterations for the Loochoos - 'bubbles floating on the water'..." The Chinese characters for Ryukyu, means 'a shining/glowing sphere/ball'. No where in the Ryukyu name means bubbles or floating. One of the ancient names of those islands does involve 'floating', when the name of the island has a Chinese pronunciation similar to the current one. But it does not involve bubbles. Also, the Chinese (Mandarin) pronunciation of 'Ryukyu' is not similar to 'Loochoo' either. The pronunciation is much closer to 'Liu Chi'iu', which to be fair, the author did mention in the next sentence of the book.

The above shows that part of the research of the book is not good enough and undermine the credibility of the book itself. Translation problems do occur when one tries to translate between languages that are very different, but this seems to be a particularly bad case. It also shows the lack of knowledge of the background of what the book tries to record. I find myself thinking, when I read the Japanese accounts, "is this correct? maybe the translation of the raw material is wrong again." The book itself may be well written, but I'm not so sure about the things written for the Japanese/Okinawan side of events, which constitutes at least half of the book.

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