MLA Platinum Award Press Release

Philip Gabriel biography

Author Biography  | Interview  | Books by this Author  | Readalikes

Philip Gabriel

Philip Gabriel

Philip Gabriel Biography

Philip Gabriel is one of the major translators into English of the works of Japanese novelist Haruki Murakami and of works by Nobel Prize winner Kenzaburo Oe. He's also the author of Mad Wives and Island Dreams: Shimao Toshio and Margins of Japanese Literature. He is a professor of modern Japanese literature and former head of East Asian Studies at the University of Arizona in Tucson.

Philip Gabriel's website

This bio was last updated on 11/13/2018. We try to keep BookBrowse's biographies both up to date and accurate, but with many thousands of lives to keep track of it's a tough task. So, please help us - if the information about this author is out of date or inaccurate, and you know of a more complete source, please let us know. Authors and publishers: If you wish to make changes to a bio, send the complete biography as you would like it displayed so that we can replace the old with the new.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $12 for 3 months or $39 for a year.
  • More about membership!

Interview

Philip Gabriel talks about his work as translator of Japanese literature including the works of Haruki Murakami and Hiro Arikawa's novel The Travelling Cat Chronicles.

As an undergrad you majored in Chinese but some Japanese novels motivated you to read them in their original form. What about those books enticed you to learn this language?

At the time, the Chinese books we were reading were all influenced by the ongoing Cultural Revolution and thus pretty boring. I wanted to read more typical fiction, but about East Asia, and the Japanese fiction I read in translation then excited me by its variety. I read Soseki, Kawabata, Tanizaki, Mishima, Oe, Abe, and found them all so different from each other, but also quite different from Western writers.

And what took you from reading the Japanese to translating books to English?

When I was living in Japan and working on my Japanese, I was part of a small reading circle of Japanese and U.S. academics in Nagasaki, where I lived. Just a handful of people who met regularly to read translations of modern Japanese literature and compare it with the original text, often line by line. The discussions we had were so stimulating that I started to think I could try my hand at translating.

What goes into your work process as you translate?

Blood, sweat and tears, as Churchill put it. You can read something in a foreign language and think you have it ...

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $12 for 3 months or $39 for a year.
  • More about membership!

Books by this Author

Books by Philip Gabriel at BookBrowse
The Travelling Cat Chronicles jacket
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $12 for 3 months or $39 for a year.
  • More about membership!

Readalikes

All the books below are recommended as readalikes for Philip Gabriel but some maybe more relevant to you than others depending on which books by the author you have read and enjoyed. So look for the suggested read-alikes by title linked on the right.
How we choose readalikes

We recommend 4 similar authors

View all 4 Readalikes

Non-members can see 2 results. Become a member
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $12 for 3 months or $39 for a year.
  • More about membership!

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member and discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten.

Join Now!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: Hamnet
    Hamnet
    by Maggie O'Farrell
    William Shakespeare's name is never used in Hamnet — a conspicuous absence around which Maggie...
  • Book Jacket: After the Last Border
    After the Last Border
    by Jessica Goudeau
    According to the United Nations Refugee Agency, the number of displaced people around the world is ...
  • Book Jacket: Crossings
    Crossings
    by Alex Landragin
    Crossings is a beautiful, if slightly messy, time-bending debut. It reads like a vampire novel, sans...
  • Book Jacket: Pew
    Pew
    by Catherine Lacey
    A quote often attributed to Leo Tolstoy states that "All great literature is one of two stories; a ...

Readers Recommend

  • Book Jacket

    Hieroglyphics
    by Jill McCorkle

    A mesmerizing novel about piecing together the hieroglyphics of history and memory.
    Reader Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    With or Without You
    by Caroline Leavitt

    A moving novel about twists of fate, the shifting terrain of love, and coming into your own.
    Reader Reviews

Book Club Discussion
Book Jacket
Every Bone a Prayer
by Ashley Blooms

The the story of one tough-as-nails girl whose choices are few but whose fight is boundless.

About the book
Join the discussion!
Win this book!
Win Every Bone a Prayer

Every Bone a Prayer by Ashley Blooms

A beautifully honest exploration of healing and of hope.

Enter

Wordplay

Solve this clue:

T Real M

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends the best in contemporary fiction and nonfiction—books that not only engage and entertain but also deepen our understanding of ourselves and the world around us.