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The Kiso RoadThe Life and Times of Shimazaki Toson$
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William E. Naff and J. Thomas Rimer

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780824832186

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824832186.001.0001

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Personal Catastrophe, Public Triumph: 1905–1907

Personal Catastrophe, Public Triumph: 1905–1907

(p.250) 8 Personal Catastrophe, Public Triumph: 1905–1907
The Kiso Road

William E. Naff

University of Hawai'i Press

This chapter examines Shimazaki Tōson's personal struggles and public achievements during the period 1905–1907. It first presents excerpts from Tōson's Mebae (Swelling Buds, 1909), a fictional treatment of his nightmarish first year and a half in Tokyo. It then turns to Tōson's first novel The Broken Commandment and comments on its reception and personal implications. It shows that The Broken Commandment marks not only Tōson's triumphant emergence as a mature writer but is also considered one of the most important landmarks in the history of the modern Japanese novel. The chapter also discusses the stage version of The Broken Commandment, the transfer of Tōson and his wife Hata Fuyuko from Okubo to the Shinkatamachi neighborhood in Komoro, and The Tōson Collection and its repercussions.

Keywords:   Shimazaki Tōson, Mebae, Tokyo, The Broken Commandment, Hata Fuyuko, Okubo, Shinkatamachi, Komoro, The Tōson Collection

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