Japanese Reading Group

I run a Japanese reading group in Chicago for the local chapter of the JET Alumni Association. We meet every second Tuesday of the month. The goal of the group is—to borrow a phrase from the director of my graduate writing program—“be helpful.” We read a relatively short Japanese text, read it out sentence by sentence in Japanese, and give an English translation to ensure we understand the meaning.

We welcome non-JETs interested in studying Japanese. If you’d like to participate, message me at rupansansei atto gmail. If you’d like to run a Japanese reading group on your own, please feel free to borrow from the reading material we’ve used. Our past meetings are below. I’ve provided links when possible.

Most of our local Chicago members have moved away, unfortunately, and there has not been much traction online. I’ll continue to post readings in the spirit of the group, but it is unlikely that any meetings will take place. Please message me if you’re interested in reviving the group!

November 2014: 「駄目になった王国」 from Haruki Murakami’s collection 『カンガルー日和』

December 2014: Finished remainder of 「駄目になった王国」

January 2015: 「特許の品」from Shin’ichi Hoshi’s collection 『ボッコちゃん』

February 2015: 「雨降る夜に」 from Aki Misaki’s collection 『バスジャック』

March 2015: 「ハイネケン・ビールの空き缶を踏む像についての短文」 from Murakami’s 『全作品1979—1989』

April 2015: 「カナリヤ」from Yasunari Kawabata’s collection 『掌の小説』

May 2015: 「第一夜」 from Natsume Sōseki’s 『夢十夜

June 2015: A few days’ worth of posts from Shigesato Itoi’s daily 「今日のダーリン」 blog post. I collected them in this file on Dropbox. You can access Itoi’s website here.

July 2015: The blog post 「ドイツとビールとノーニュークス」 from the blog 『八百八町

August 2015: 「学園祭で知った真実」 from Kenji Tsuchiya’s collection 『紅茶を注文する方法 』

September 2015: 「不得意な仕事」 from Kenji Tsuchiya’s collection 『紅茶を注文する方法 』

October 2015: 「ホテルロビーの牡蠣」by Haruki Murakami

November 2015: The blog post 「ノーベル財団めちゃすごい」 from the blog Chikirinの日記

December 2015: Two blog posts from the Beer Boulevard staff blog: 「「ビアブルヴァードサトウのブログ」(仮)スタートします!」 and 「雨あがりのピルゼン

January 2016: First three pages of 『ブレーブ・ストーリー』 by Miyuki Miyabe

February 2016: 「まぼろし」 from the first volume of Naoto Yamakawa’s manga collection 『コーヒーもう一杯』

March 2016:ご愁傷様の意味と正しい使い方」 – a blog post by a funeral director.

April 2016: 「2000年お正月の思い出」 – a short essay by Momoko Sakura from her collection 『さくらえび』

May 2016:  First half of 「初恋」by Kunikida Doppo

June 2016: Second half of 「初恋」by Kunikida Doppo

July 2016: 「たそがれ」 by 鈴木三重吉, the text for the 2016 Kurodahan Press Translation Prize

August 2016:うっかりして発見」 by Misato Yugi

September 2016: German Work

October 2016: 通帳の残高を見て泣きたくなった弁護士さんへの依頼一条工務店は、だますつもりではなかったと言っています

November 2016: 財産分与調停の申し立て【進展】夫からの連絡夫との『離婚』話し合いの日程が決定しました

December 2016: 日本人が知らない “アメトラ” 誕生の物語

January 2017: ケーベル先生の告別 by Natsume Soseki

February 2017: by Osamu Dasai

March 2017: コーヒー五千円 by Katayama Hiroko

April 2017: 独り旅 by Wakasugi Toriko

May 2017: さしみ by Kōseki Sato

June 2017: 濃霧の中の殺人 by Yusuke Nakamura

July 2017: 足袋 by Tōson Shimazaki

August 2017: 気仙沼 by Kōtaro Takamura

September 2017: 鶴の笛 by Fumiko Hayashi

October 2017: 横綱 by Dasai Osamu

November 2017: 秋と漫歩 by Sakutaro Hagiwara

December 2017: 漱石山房の冬 by Ryūnosuke Akutagawa

January 2018: 正月の思い出 by Kido Okamoto

February 2018: by Utsubo Kubota

March 2018: 誘った夜 (1, 2),スーツの悲鳴 (1, 2)

April 2018: 誘われた夜 (1,2), 四月号の創作三つ

May 2018: 日記帳 by Edogawa Rampo (This will probably take us three months to get through.)

June 2018: 日記帳 by Edogawa Rampo

July 2018: 日記帳 by Edogawa Rampo

August 2018: 日記帳 by Edogawa Rampo

September 2018: あとの祭り by Baku Yamanokuchi

October 2018: 雪の日 by Kanoko Okamoto

November 2018: 汽車 by Chiyoko Hirayama. Facebook event page.

December 2018: 戦争と一人の女 by Ango Sakaguchi Facebook event page.

January 2019: 戦争と一人の女 by Ango Sakaguchi Facebook event page

February 2019: 戦争と一人の女 by Ango Sakaguchi Facebook event page

March 2019: 戦争と一人の女 by Ango Sakaguchi Facebook event page

April 2019: 煙と兄弟 by Mimei Ogawa Facebook event page

May 2019: わからないこと by Yuriko Miyamoto Facebook event page

June 2019: 父帰る by Takiji Kobayashi

July 2019: 母の手紙 by Suzuko Nakano

August 2019: 向島 by Kafu Nagai Facebook event page

September 2019: 年の瀬の音 by Shugoro Yamamoto Facebook event page

October 2019: ある探偵事件 by Terada Torahiko Facebook event page

November 2019: 書けない探偵小説 by Yumeno Kyusaku Facebook event page

December 2019: ある男の死 by Kanoko Okamoto

If you have any suggestions for future readings, I’d love to hear them. Please send them my way.