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So Lovely a Country Will Never Perish : Wartime Diaries of Japanese Writers

By: Keene, Donald.
Material type: TextTextSeries: eBooks on Demand.Asia Perspectives: History, Society, and Culture: Publisher: New York : Columbia University Press, 2010Description: 1 online resource (225 p.).ISBN: 9780231522724.Subject(s): Authors, Japanese -- 20th century -- Diaries | Nagai, Kafu¯, 1879-1959 -- Diaries | Takami, Jun, 1907-1965 -- Diaries | World War, 1939-1945 -- Japan | World War, 1939-1945 -- Literature and the war | World War, 1939-1945 -- Personal narratives, Japanese | Yamada, Fu¯taro¯, 1922-2001 -- DiariesGenre/Form: Electronic books.Additional physical formats: Print version:: So Lovely a Country Will Never Perish : Wartime Diaries of Japanese WritersDDC classification: 940.53/520922 | 940.53520922 Online resources: Click here to view this ebook.
Contents:
CONTENTS; INTRODUCTION: WARTIME DIARIES; 1. THE DAY THE WAR BEGAN; 2. THE BIRTH OF "GREATER EAST ASIA"; 3. FALSE VICTORIES AND REAL DEFEATS; 4. A DISMAL NEW YEAR; 5. ON THE EVE; 6. THE JADE VOICE; 7. THE DAYS AFTER; 8. THE REVIVAL OF LITERATURE; 9. REJECTION OF THE WAR; 10. UNDER THE OCCUPATION; NOTES; BIBLIOGRAPHY; INDEX
Summary: The attack on Pearl Harbor, which precipitated the Greater East Asia War and its initial triumphs, aroused pride and a host of other emotions among the Japanese people. Yet the single year in which Japanese forces occupied territory from Alaska to Indonesia was followed by three years of terrible defeat. Nevertheless, until the shattering end of the war, many Japanese continued to believe in the invincibility of their country. But in the diaries of well-known writers& mdash;including Nagai Kafu, Takami Jun, Yamada Futaru, and Hirabayashi Taiko& mdash;and the scholar Watanabe Kazuo, varying doubts were vividly, though privately, expressed.Donald Keene, renowned scholar of Japan, selects from these diaries, some written by authors he knew well. Their revelations were sometimes poignant, sometimes shocking to Keene. Ito Sei's fervent patriotism and even claims of racial superiority stand in stark contrast to the soft-spoken, kindly man Keene knew. Weaving archival materials with personal recollections and the intimate accounts themselves, Keene reproduces the passions aroused during the war and the sharply contrasting reactions in the year following Japan's surrender. Whether detailed or fragmentary, these entries communicate the reality of false victory and all-too-real defeat.
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PL723 .K42 2010 (Browse shelf) http://uttyler.eblib.com/patron/FullRecord.aspx?p=908292 Available EBL908292

CONTENTS; INTRODUCTION: WARTIME DIARIES; 1. THE DAY THE WAR BEGAN; 2. THE BIRTH OF "GREATER EAST ASIA"; 3. FALSE VICTORIES AND REAL DEFEATS; 4. A DISMAL NEW YEAR; 5. ON THE EVE; 6. THE JADE VOICE; 7. THE DAYS AFTER; 8. THE REVIVAL OF LITERATURE; 9. REJECTION OF THE WAR; 10. UNDER THE OCCUPATION; NOTES; BIBLIOGRAPHY; INDEX

The attack on Pearl Harbor, which precipitated the Greater East Asia War and its initial triumphs, aroused pride and a host of other emotions among the Japanese people. Yet the single year in which Japanese forces occupied territory from Alaska to Indonesia was followed by three years of terrible defeat. Nevertheless, until the shattering end of the war, many Japanese continued to believe in the invincibility of their country. But in the diaries of well-known writers& mdash;including Nagai Kafu, Takami Jun, Yamada Futaru, and Hirabayashi Taiko& mdash;and the scholar Watanabe Kazuo, varying doubts were vividly, though privately, expressed.Donald Keene, renowned scholar of Japan, selects from these diaries, some written by authors he knew well. Their revelations were sometimes poignant, sometimes shocking to Keene. Ito Sei's fervent patriotism and even claims of racial superiority stand in stark contrast to the soft-spoken, kindly man Keene knew. Weaving archival materials with personal recollections and the intimate accounts themselves, Keene reproduces the passions aroused during the war and the sharply contrasting reactions in the year following Japan's surrender. Whether detailed or fragmentary, these entries communicate the reality of false victory and all-too-real defeat.

Description based upon print version of record.

Reviews provided by Syndetics

CHOICE Review

Operating on the premise that the diaries kept by professional writers in Japan from December 8, 1941, to 1946 provide the most interesting accounts of the period, Keene (emer., Columbia Univ.) has compiled and translated selections by Nagai Kaf, Takami Jun, It Sei, Yamada Ftar, Hirabayashi Taiko, and others. The author chose excerpts intended to form a narrative of reactions to the events in the Pacific, such as the bombing of Pearl Harbor, and of coping with wartime deprivation and survival. The book offers ample illustrations of jingoistic patriotism, but it also reveals disinterest in the war, except as it affects ability to procure a favorite foreign food, drink, and books (Kaf). Much of the context and background Keene provides derives from his having experienced events himself. However, the organizing principle of the book is vague and the narrative lacks cohesion. Many fascinating nuggets go unexamined, or if commented on, unanalyzed. For example, diarists display vestiges of colonial and racist ideology, complaining that Japanese culture was as low as that of the South Pacific colonies and disparaging the intelligence of "natives." That the author did not excavate the many revealing passages and integrate them in a more unified discussion seems a waste. Summing Up: Optional. Lower- and upper-division undergraduates. L. I. Winston independent scholar

Author notes provided by Syndetics

Donald Keene was born in Brooklyn, New York on June 18, 1922. He was a child prodigy and entered Columbia University on scholarship in 1938 at the age of 16. He received a bachelor's degree in 1942, a master's degree in 1947, and a doctoral degree in 1951 from Columbia. Shortly after Pearl Harbor, he enlisted in the Navy and volunteered to study Japanese. His first experience as a translator came in Hawaii, where he worked on routine military reports captured from Japanese units in the Pacific theater. He then became a wartime interrogator after the battle in Okinawa on April 1, 1945. <p> After he was discharged, he taught at Columbia University for 56 years. Over his career, he translated many of the most important works of Japanese literature into English. He also wrote numerous books in both English and Japanese including Dawn to the West and Travelers of the Ages. In 1985, he became the first non-Japanese to receive the Yomiuri Prize for Literature for literary criticism. He became a Japanese citizen in 2012. He died on February 24, 2019 at the age of 96. <p> (Bowker Author Biography)

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