Shotaro Yasuoka

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Shotaro Yasuoka

Shotaro Yasuoka 安岡章太郎

Shotaro Yasuoka  (1920–2013)  was born in Kochi Prefecture. The son of a veterinary corpsman in the Imperial Army, he experienced an early life of frequent moves from one military post to the next. Never in one place for long, the young Yasuoka developed a dislike for schooling. After graduating from middle school, he spent three years away from the classroom until being accepted into Keio University's preliminary course. He was then drafted and sent to northern Manchuria, but a bout of pulmonary tuberculosis saw him discharged the next year. He returned to school, but when the war ended, his father lost his livelihood as a soldier, plunging the entire family into poverty. Yasuoka came down with spinal caries, and with no chance for treatment without money, took on a series of odd jobs, working at one time as a caretaker for housing units requisitioned by the U.S. Occupation forces. It was while he was bedridden with this disease that he began his writing career. Some episodes from this period in his life are depicted in The Glass Slipper, his 1951 debut work. This and many other works of his have been translated into English, including the short stories Bad Company and Gloomy Pleasures, and the novel A Tale of Wandering Ancestors. In 2001 he received the Cultural Merit Award for his lifetime of literary activities.

Books by Shotaro Yasuoka
  • Book

    The Glass Slipper and Other Stories

    This is a collection of short stories by Shotaro Yasuoka, a leading figure in the world of postwar Japanese literature. The title story, The Glass Slipper, has earned high praise from the writer Haruki Murakami. In The Glass Slipper, the narrator?a …

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