I came across the term “漫画研究会” in one short story, and I have been trying to figure out a good way to translate it.
“漫画” (manga) is not too difficult to translate. I simply translate it as “comic books”. Why? Because the short story takes place in a Japanese high school and it means “comics” in the Japanese language. Not to mention that “comic books” is often implied in the term.
“研究会” (kenkyuukai) is a term that is challenging to translate. Why? Well, here is the Japanese Wikipedia article on 研究会. The article may be missing sources, but it shows the various ways you can use the term.
- Learned societies (also called learned academies, scholarly societies or academic associations)
- Meetings of intellectuals that have been set up by administrative organs.
- Groups of professional Game of Generals (Shougi) players.
- Specialized training colleges (also called vocational schools, technical schools, professional schools, special schools, trade schools and so on).
- The names of Public Interest Incorporated Associations and Public Interest Incorporated Foundations.
- Policy organizations and political groups (6 people or more).
- The names of parliamentary associations, groups (2-5 people) and factions in political parties.
- Groups that engage in club activities (also called extracurricular activities or circle activities).
According to Weblio, 研究会 has the following translations: “workshop”, “society for the study of X”, “research society”, “study class”, “study group”, “seminar”, “scientific meeting”, “research meeting” and so on.
The short story that I mentioned at the beginning takes place in a high school. I think that “research meeting”, “scientific meeting”, “seminar” and “workshop” are not the right terms in this context, because those terms make more sense in a university as opposed to a high school. The terms “society for the study of X” and “research society” sound like groups that would have adult members, not high school students. The term “study class” makes it sound like it teaches about a subject for a period of time before giving an examination at the end of it. I think “study group” might fit the bill.
Moreover, in the story, it talks about the Culture Clubs and the Sports Clubs. Apparently, the 漫画研究会 is considered one of the Culture Clubs.
I think 漫画研究会 is translated as “The Comic Book Study Group” or “The Comic Book Club”.
Am I on the right track with this? I would greatly appreciate your feedback on this matter.