world cup of writing – Japan

The writers –

Now suppose the first place to start is with Haruki Murkami ,he is the most well-known contemporary Japanese writer ,I ve read a number of his books the novel  south of the border west of the sun i really enjoyed ,also his non fiction collection of writing about running what i talk about when i talk about running with its Raymond Carver inspired title ,Gave a wonderful insight into the modern Japanese Psyche and the man himself ,other writers i ve read include Yukio Mishna’s the sailor who fell from grace with the sea which i didn’t enjoy so much but has stuck in my mind for a time after i read it .the female writer banana Yoshimoto whose kitchen I read years ago ,a family drama set in nineties Tokyo ,she is a firm favourite of a twitter friend and writer Dan Holloway one of the year zero collective .i also have a collection of short stories which featured 25 story’s from early to mid twentieth century japanese writers ,there are a lot of new writers appear from japan that i shall be reading future and people like endo .

short japanese story collection

World cup memories –

they have played last three world cup with 2002 being the only time they progress ,they had a wonderfully talented midfielder called hidetoshi Nakata he was dubbed the David beckam of japan and supported a very jazzy haircut ,they pull a big  victory over russia in 2002 which was a mild shock as they were thought to be the outsiders in their group .

hidetoshi nakata

15 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. amymckie
    Jun 04, 2010 @ 00:35:47

    Japan does have so many great writers. I’ve only read a small number, but hopefully will get more here soon. And interesting that they beat out Russia, do you think they will make it far this year?


    • winstonsdad
      Jun 04, 2010 @ 06:24:42

      hi amy there in a really tough group ,i ll think they ll struggle get past first round ,yes a lot good japanese writers ,all the best stu


  2. Frances
    Jun 04, 2010 @ 01:25:14

    Would be interested in picking up this collection as Asian lit seems to be a reading weak point for me. Bellezza has everyone at it with her summer Japanese challenge so maybe this is the time to dive in.

    BTW, love the World Cup tie-in thing you are doing!


    • winstonsdad
      Jun 04, 2010 @ 06:28:12

      thanks frances ,this collection is a good place to start think ivan morris the editor was a leader in japanese lit and a translator ,think still available in a different cover I ve had it for a number of years thou ,all the best stu


  3. Tom Cunliffe
    Jun 04, 2010 @ 07:05:06

    Oh gosh, another country’s literature to explore! The only Japanese writer I have read is Murakami – but I’ve read several of his – Kafka on the Shore being my favourite. I need to look into finding more Japanese authors to read I think as in many ways its such an alien culture to our own


    • winstonsdad
      Jun 04, 2010 @ 09:09:38

      me too tom maybe read 20 books and that just feels like a scratch on the surface ,i love getting insight into japanese mindset as it is so different from ours at times ,stu


  4. Stewart
    Jun 04, 2010 @ 07:33:03

    You need to look up a publisher called Kodansha International on this one. They publish many titles as part of the Japanese Literature Project, an endeavour that seeks to put Japanese lit out there in a select few languages.

    I don’t rate Murakami: read one, failed to get excited enough to finish another two. Kodansha published his first novel – Hear The Wind Sing – which you are unlikely to find outside of Japan. He doesn’t allow it, apparently.

    Anyway, other writers: Kenzaburo Oe, Yasunari Kawabata, Juni’chiro Tanizaki, Akira Yoshimure, Ryunosuke Akutagawa, Ryu Murakami, Hitomi Kanehara – a few that jump to mind.


    • winstonsdad
      Jun 04, 2010 @ 09:12:16

      thanks stu ,,loads for me to look at myself ,i ve read probably 20 books and still feel a new comer to japanese lit


  5. Nymeth
    Jun 04, 2010 @ 17:37:43

    I really need to get my hands on What I Talk About When I Talk About Running. I thought I might not like Murakami’s non-fiction, but reading Underground a while back changed my mind.


  6. chasing bawa
    Jun 07, 2010 @ 15:31:14

    I have a copy of Modern Japanese Stories somewhere – must dig it out! And I’m also a big fan of Murakami’s What I Talk About When I Talk About Running… very inspiring. Nakata Hide was Japan’s great hope. It was so sad after the last World Cup.


  7. Claire (Paperback Reader)
    Jun 10, 2010 @ 20:18:56

    Great resource, Stu! Thanks for pointing it out (I’m hopelessly behind in my Google Reader). I think I’m going to read Natsuo Kirino for the challenge as intended to last year but didn’t get around to it (story of my life).

    I adore Japanese literature.


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June 2010


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