Author Starlight skirt under the minister
Avatar
This will be a journey!
Avatar
That translation nearly makes sense grammatically but feels like it's terribly falling afoul of the common "Surely you know about these wuxia/xanxia/w/e terms, as well as Chinese slang. Right?"

Like, I know "male god" is basically "bishounen" (instead of literally a god that is male), but the rest is lost on me.

I wonder if this trend is simply because there are straight-up more Chinese than English first-language speakers (as opposed to the other way around with Japanese and Korean) and so odd literal translations being codified is, accordingly, just A Thing.
Avatar
@pokari I know you commented a while back but just to let you know bishounen just means a super good looking (younger) guy in Japanese so doesn't have to related to male gods (though most that show up in manga are undeniably handsome lol)
But yeah, I haven't read this but I don't know Chinese slang either
Avatar
@sorarinnie:

For a second you made me doubt my understanding of the Chinese term, but a quick google search does seem to confirm my understanding:

男神, or nanshen in pinyin, literally means male god, but it is used to describe a male that is usually so handsome and good-looking that he is almost god-like. It sounds like a mouthful, but this slang can be used on a daily basis.

Possible subtle difference in terms of implied-age of "bishounen" notwithstanding. In manga usage, it seemed the closest neighbor that came to mind. Especially out of words that have received enough adoption in the English-speaking fan-base, to be recognizable enough to use in casual conversation.

Is it possible you are also mistaking "male god" as literally a male god, and thus falling afoul of exactly the literal-translation-convention problems I was talking about...?
Last edited 13 days ago by Pokari.
Avatar
@Pokari Oh yeah, 男神 means male god in Japanese, too, but that's not pronounced "bishounen" (which would be written as 美少年, or for good looking men of all ages 美男子 -bidanshi-) in Japanese. I was just referring to that since you used a Japanese term and I got confused and thought you mean bishounan always means male god; I didn't realize you were referring to Chinese slang. That second character (神) literally means "god" and that's not there in bishounen nor is it used as slang in Japanese. There are a lot of differences in Chinese and Japanese and I only speak Japanese so I definitely can't speak to how Chinese slang works (and again, I didn't realize that's what you were referring to).
Last edited 12 days ago by sorarinnie.
Avatar
@sorarinnie: Yeah, I was just using a Japanese word with similar meaning as a comparative analogue (thus the conjoining "is basically" in the original sentence).

(And, "bishounen" and to a lesser extent "bishoujo" are, for whatever historical reasons, recognisable to the English-speaking manga fanbase in a way that "bidanshi" and "bijo" are not. And "bishounen" in particular has possibly more or less half taken on it's own colour of meaning in English use, I feel, which was upon reflection more the spirit I was using it in, but... I digress. My point is it was not intended to be the most accurate translation, it was just a casual comparison-in-passing and will indeed not stand up to the level of analysis it's being subjected to right now XD)
Avatar
@Pokari Got it haha, at first I was like, they use "bishounen" in Chinese?! XD
But yeah, at this point so many words have crossed over! I heard this one guy use "isekai" in casual conversation (before I'd known it became a genre) and was like, "I understand what you're saying and what it means but I have no idea in what context you'd naturally learn it" because it's just not casual vocabulary people would really use, even if they were learning Japanese. I also thought it probably would be something that would have been left untranslated in manga enough for people to remember, but I was completely wrong haha 😆