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Audiobooks of Japanese Literature in Translation

Kobo Abe The Woman in the Dunes Translated by E. Dale Saunders Narrated by Julian Cihi Hiro Arikawa The Traveling Cat Chronicles Translated by Philip Gabriel Narrated by George Bladden Osamu Dazai No Longer Human Translated by Donald Keene Narrated by David Shih The Setting Sun Translated by Donald Keene Narrated by June Angela Wish […]

2022 Upcoming Japanese Fiction Releases

Dates listed are the earliest tentative release dates I can find in the US or UK. Descriptions are excerpted from book sellers’ or publishers’ websites. Translators are listed unless I wasn’t able to find information. Please contact me if I have missed any titles. Thank you to the Goodreads Japanese Literature Group for pooling information. […]

Mudshit: Sacred Cesium Ground as an Allegory for 3/11

On March 11, 2011, the 9.0-magnitude Great East Japan Earthquake triggered a powerful tsunami that swept the Tohoku region in Northeastern Japan. Residents had less than ten minutes to flee from a 133-foot wave that rushed to shore at speeds up to 435 miles an hour. The earthquake also triggered three meltdowns at the nearby […]

Aum Anxiety

The narrative that most Japanese embrace (or imagine they share) broke down; none of these “common values” proved the least effective in warding off the evil violence that erupted under us. —Haruki Murakami, Underground New Religions and the Aum Affair “New Religion” (“new religious movements” or NRM) is a nebulous term for religions founded in […]

The Goddess Chronicle: A Woman’s Ambiguous Place in Japan’s Creation Myth

To appreciate The Goddess Chronicle, you need to be familiar with The Kojiki, the oldest recorded mythical origin story of Japan. (Kirino provides a good summary in part II, chapters 5-6.) In The Kojiki, the first anthropomorphic gods are Izanami (She Who Beckoned) and Izanagi (He Who Beckoned). They quickly notice that their bodies have some key differences: […]

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