Authors

Kenji Miyazawa

Kenji Miyazawa 宮沢賢治

Kenji Miyazawa  (1896–1933)  was born the eldest son of a pawnbroker in the northeastern town of Hanamaki, Iwate Prefecture. From a young age he was fascinated by plants, insects, and especially minerals, which he avidly collected. When he entered middle school his interest in nature deepened, and he also began poring through books on philosophy and Buddhism, a knowledge of which infuses his later works. After graduating from Morioka Higher Agricultural and Forestry School, Miyazawa went to Tokyo for several months and then returned to his hometown to work as a teacher at an agricultural school. After five years, he quit this job and established the Rasu Farmer's Society. In the last years of his life, until 1928, he traveled from village to village teaching the techniques of rice cultivation and giving talks on agronomy. His best-known literary work is the novel Ginga tetsudo no yoru, which has seen translation into English under various titles, among them Night of the Milky Way Railway and Milky Way Railroad. Also available in English translation is the poetry anthology Strong in the Rain: Selected Poems.

Books by Kenji Miyazawa
  • Book

    Strong in the Rain: Selected Poems

    This collection of classic poems celebrates the whole of creation. Kenji Miyazawa is increasingly viewed as Japan's greatest poet of the 20th century. In his poems, which are both lyrical and permeated with a sophisticated scientific understanding of the …

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  • Book

    Night of the Milky Way Railway and Other Stories

    This collection of timeless children's classics by Japan's most beloved modern-age writer features Ginga tetsudo no yoru (tr. Night of the Milky Way Railway), Miyazawa's most celebrated work. It is a story about Giovanni, a schoolboy, and h …

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