That a Japanese readership has enjoyed a special connection with Anne of Green Gables continues to be an issue of mirth and curiosity. While critics have investigated the material products of this relationship—tourism, book clubs, and other fan-based festivities—the initial rational as to why the Japanese in particular, of all possible audiences, have taken to Anne remains enigmatic. This article proposes one answer to this question of a Japanese readership by studying the allusive textures of Muraoka Hanako's (Mikasa-shôbô, 1952) and Kakegawa Yasuko's (Kôdan-sha, 1999) translations. Both translators, in various ways, layered nuances of koten [classical Japanese literature] into Montgomery's text. Thus, interlingual and intercultural strategies underscore many of their linguistic and thematic selections in terms of vocabulary, syntax, and iconography. By drawing upon the language and poetics of the Japanese classics, Muraoka and Kakegawa fashion a hybridized Anne/An, a character geographically Canadian but also resonating, culturally, with Japanese registers.
Please note that works on the Canadian Literature website may not be the final versions as they appear in the journal, as additional editing may take place between the web and print versions. If you are quoting reviews, articles, and/or poems from the Canadian Literature website, please indicate the date of access.