In terms of comma placement, does the following rough English translation match the Japanese?

厄介よ、 あの国のマスコミは

How bothersome, that country's mass media.

I know that in terms of proper English, a better translation would be:

The mass media of that country is certain to be a bother.

However I want to know if there is another way to translate the Japanese so that the comma is also used in the English translation.

  • 2
    「あの国のマスコミ」は that country of mass media じゃなくて "the mass media of that country" じゃないですかね・・・?
    – chocolate
    Apr 28, 2019 at 4:56
  • I'd use "that country's mass media". Also, where did "is" come from?
    – user3169
    Apr 28, 2019 at 5:18
  • ^ "is" は、「よ」じゃないですかね・・ 「あの国のマスコミは厄介よ。」 eg「明日は雨 。」「今日は土曜日 。」 (女っぽいcopulaみたいな。。)
    – chocolate
    Apr 28, 2019 at 5:36
  • @user3169 "is" was a typo on my phone. So then, to you a translation with a comma would be "How bothersome, that country's mass media."?
    – Toyu_Frey
    Apr 28, 2019 at 6:20
  • @Chocolate So you're telling me [あの国のマスコミ] means "the mass media of that country" , not "that country of mass media"?
    – Toyu_Frey
    Apr 28, 2019 at 6:25

1 Answer 1


However I want to know if there is another way to translate the Japanese so that the comma is also used in the English translation.

Sure, if you don't mind an unnatural English, you could translate it literally. However I really don't see the point, English and Japanese are very different languages in which the ways you start, structure, and end a sentence are different. The way those languages are constructed is different, and so on.

You can't just apply the same punctuation rules from one language onto another without taking the linguistic differences into account.

  • I suppose I wanted to literally translate the sentence in terms of comma placement as the line in question is dialogue, which can affect how a character speaks, their characterization, mannerisms, and the reader's perspective of them. This means that if I want to be faithful to the original, I think I need the comma... do I need the comma to be faithful? Or am I being to strict on myself in terms of translation?
    – Toyu_Frey
    Apr 28, 2019 at 19:57
  • I see what you mean @Toyu_Frey, but the characteristics that you point out change depending on the language spoken anyway. No matter how hard you try you won't have a perfectly accurate translation, what you should do is try to be as close as possible to the original text, and in this case you would have to drop the comma if you want it to be natural... if you really want to use a comma, you could say "Really, blabla" but then it's not completely accurate either and in the end, it depends on the translator's interpretation of the original text
    – Tchang
    Apr 29, 2019 at 2:08
  • I think I went without the comma in my current translation, and considering how I've gotten the comma more or less in all the other sentences that have a comma in the original, I think one difference is a small price to pay for now.
    – Toyu_Frey
    Apr 29, 2019 at 2:14

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