Posts tagged japan

“An Artist of the Floating World” by Kazuo Ishiguro

An elderly, celebrated artist, Masuji Ono, is living in retirement in Japan just after the end of World War Two. His daughter is having trouble in her marriage negotiations for reasons he can’t understand: gradually he realises it’s because he is associated with the rise of Japanese militarism in the 1930s, a period now discredited and blamed for bringing disaster on the country. The theme of the book is the role of the artist in the world, and this is what old Masuji Ono gradually explores. As with many of… Read More

Hakamada Iwao

In Japan, a prisoner on death row wakes up every morning not knowing if he will be executed that day. The prisoner doesn’t know his execution date until the morning it is to be carried out. His family only finds out after the execution has already taken place. Hakamada Iwao has been on death row for 40 years. 28 of those years have been spent in solitary confinement. He now suffers from mental illness. The basis for his conviction in 1968 was a confession extracted after 20 days of intensive… Read More