Overview Acknowledgments Notes on the Photos, Captions and My Story
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Notes on the Photos, Captions & My Story

Considerations in the Photographing

In photographing the seven Deai students for this project, special care was taken 1) in line with the purpose of this project to show the students as their lives really are, not to photograph the student engaged in any activity or places not an ordinary part of his or her life, and 2) as a rule to photograph the student in situations that well express the character of the student and the features of his or her daily life.

Particularly in the case of Mizushima Yu and Yoshida Kojiro, in consideration of themes and cultural topics often introduced in Japanese-language education, some scenes of daily life are of a very average nature not necessarily characteristic of the individual in question. The photographs showing the "Day in the Life" of the student, it should be noted, were not necessarily taken on the same day.

"Caption" and "My Story"

The texts of the stories and captions were written by the students themselves (in some cases edited and amplified in the editorial process) or written by the TJF staff on the basis of interviews of the students. In either case, texts were all checked by the students, and their additions and corrections were incorporated before publication. While some editing has been done at TJF, the texts preserve as much as possible the expressions and style of the individual students. The style and tone of the different texts, therefore, are varied. Copyright to all textual material resides with TJF.

Matters of Style: Japanese Text

The stories of each student are written in an informal style and the captions in a slightly more formal style. The comments by various people are given in natural, colloquial form. The references to family members in the captions (Otosan おとうさん, Okasan おかあさん, Papa, Mama, etc.) follow the actual preferred terms of each student in order to show the differences in usage from one family to another. Young peopl's ways of referring to friends and acquaintances vary: some use simply the person's first or last name, others add "-san," "-kun," or "-chan." In the Japanese captions, we preserved the individual differences of custom. Regarding not only proper nouns, but common nouns as well, there are some differences among individuals. (For example, some students call a boxed lunch "obento(おべんとう)" and others call it "bento (べんとう)."

Kanji usage in the stories and captions is limited to the characters of the Joyo Kanji list studied in elementary and junior high school. Reflecting recent usage trends, however, in some cases hiragana is given preference.

Arabic figures are used as a rule for numbers and are not marked with rubi readings, with a few exceptions where it is deemed necessary (example: 1人).

There may be varied renderings of the same word written in katakana or kanji (examples:コンピュータ/コンピューター (computer).

Matters of Style: English Text

The English text is a basically close rendering of the Japanese, but is not a word-for-word translation. Priority was given to making both texts read naturally and meaningfully to native speakers of the two languages.

As a basic rule, the text uses American spelling.

Japanese names and terms in the text are romanized according to the Hepburn system, but macrons have not been used to mark long vowels. For the correct reading of Japanese words, we encourage readers to refer to the Japanese side of the text or to the vocabulary list provided at the Deai Website. Proper nouns are capped and in roman type; common nouns, including Japanese words that have already entered the English language, are italicized.

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