Short Stories, Irish literature, Classics, Modern Fiction, Contemporary Literary Fiction, The Japanese Novel, Post Colonial Asian Fiction, The Legacy of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and quality Historical Novels are Among my Interests

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Japan's Only Known Survivor Of Both Atomic Blasts Has Died

Japan's Only Known Survivor Of Both Atomic Blasts Has Died - The Two-Way - Breaking News, Analysis Blog : NPR

I received this notice today via NPR (public radio in the United States)-it made me think again of Kenzaburo Oe's non-fiction work Hiroshima Notes in which he spoke of the  of people who survived both atomic bomb blasts and their fates. One of the people mentioned by Oe was Tsutomo Yamaguchi.   He passed away yesterday at the age of 93 after a long fight with stomach cancer.     The people of Hiroshima were among the very first Japanese to speak out against the role of the Japanese military in WWII.    Oe said in Hiroshima Notes that the most important thing to come out of the bomb blasts was the wisdom the suffering did bring to many of the survivors.     Oe's collection of short stories by and about survivors of the atomic bomb blasts, Crazy Iris and Other Stories of the Atomic Aftermath is a world class treasure.   I devoted five reviews to the stories in this book.  When I did Google searches on the authors of the stories, some of them went on to become famous and respected authors.   However, three of the authors had no Google records (other than mentioning their story was reprinted in Oe's collection).   At first I thought this means I am writing these relatively long blog posts on something no one cares about and I admit I was concerned the posts might turn new readers (my blog had just started when I wrote the six posts devoted to this collection and Hiroshima Notes) away from my blog.    I had by then begun to follow my blog with Google Web Master tools (as most all blogspot bloggers do).    I noticed people from all over the world were doing Google searches on the very obscure to most writers to whom I had dedicated posts and coming to my blog to read the articles on them.    A number of them read the articles in Japanese.   Somehow I have now come to see my posts on the writers from the collection as a small memorial to them.    Before I wrote my posts you could find information on five of the eight writers in the collection via a Google search. Now you can find information on all of them.

Mel u



Suko said...

Thanks for reporting this news about Tsutumo Yamaguchi. I remember the story of the empty can from a previous post.

me. said...

Thanks for sharing this news.

Anna said...

Thanks for sharing this.

FYI; For all 2009 WWII Reading Participants, the giveaways are up and ready for entrants.

go here:

Mel u said...

Suko-you are welcome as always

me. I thought it was important


Patrick said...

Thanks for sharing that bit in the book. It seems like a book I will like. Are these Japanese books available in our bookstores here in Manila?

Oh, and about Tsutomo Yamaguchi. I read that James Cameron (director of Avatar and Titanic) visited him last year to learn more about the Hiroshima bombing. Cameron is optioning to make a film version of an upcoming nonfiction novel by Charles Pellegrino called The Last Train From Hiroshima: The Survivors Look Back. Should be pretty interesting too.