In the context of writing a master dissertation about japanese culture at the Inalco (Paris), I dived into the history of japanese typography, focusing on the figure of Motogi Shōzō. As there are only few sources in english or in french about the development of japanese typography, I want to share here some of the elements I discovered.
(master dissertation under the direction of Emmanuel Lozerand, in 2016)
In 2007, I translated for my master’s degree dissertation a german text by Jan Tschichold describing the evolution of the ampersand, a text that was published in 1953. Here is this translation in french, to which I added a few comments (set in italic). The orignial text is written as one block of text, but I chunked it here in historical periods and the ampersand’s collection made by Tschichold (naming in numbers) has been completed by personal finds (naming in letters). I am very sorry that I did not translate this text in english, but as english is not my mothertongue, I think it would have taken the text too far away form its source and it is never a good idea to make a translation of a translation. Anyway, you can still look at the images, they’re pretty nice! (And learn how to say “ampersand” in french, that is “esperluette” (cute word)).