Friday, January 14, 2022

Jan. 14: Yukio Mishima, Japanese writer


Yukio Mishima (1925-1970) stunningly evocative Japanese novelist, playwright, poet, short story writer, and essayist. A Shintoist and active right-wing nationalist, he opposed Japan's increasing western-style materialism and postwar turn to democracy and globalism. To prove his point, he and four followers entered a Tokyo military base and took its commandant hostage, attempting to overthrow Japan's 1947 Constitution. After a speech and a cry of "Long live the Emperor!", he committed seppuku ("hara-kiri"), the favored mode of death of the samurai. Works include Confessions of a Mask; The Temple of the Golden Pavilion; The Sailor Who Fell from Grace with the Sea; The Sea of Fertility tetralogy (Spring Snow; Runaway Horses; The Temple of Dawn; The Decay of the Angel); and Hagakure Nyumon, which examines living the Samurai Way in modern life.


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