The Skeletons’ Dance
This chapter provides a translation for Akita Ujaku's The Skeletons' Dance—one of the first works to address the slaughter of Koreans after the 1923 earthquake. The Skeletons' Dance does not portray the earthquake itself; it is set some hundreds of miles away from Tokyo, in an evacuation tent at “M” (Morioka?) Station. Here Ujaku is less interested in a realistic rendering of the disaster than in capturing its political, social, and spiritual effect; hence his call for a “liberation of subjectivity.” In his directions, Ujaku indicates that “Cubist staging could be employed here. It might be interesting to try the 'Mavo' style,” with “Mavo” referring to a constructivist movement initiated by Murayama Tomoyoshi, Ogata Kamenosuke, Yanase Masamu, and others.
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