Scarlet Gang of Asakusa

ISBN-10: 0520241827
ISBN-13: 9780520241824
Edition: 2005
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Description: In the 1920s, Asakusa was to Tokyo what Montmartre had been to 1890s Paris and Times Square was to be to 1940s New York. Available in English for the first time,The Scarlet Gang of Asakusa,by Nobel Prize winner Yasunari Kawabata, captures the  More...

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Book details

List price: $29.95
Copyright year: 2005
Publisher: University of California Press
Publication date: 4/18/2005
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 279
Size: 5.75" wide x 8.50" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 0.682
Language: English

In the 1920s, Asakusa was to Tokyo what Montmartre had been to 1890s Paris and Times Square was to be to 1940s New York. Available in English for the first time,The Scarlet Gang of Asakusa,by Nobel Prize winner Yasunari Kawabata, captures the decadent allure of this entertainment district, where beggars and teenage prostitutes mixed with revue dancers and famous authors. Originally serialized in a Tokyo daily newspaper in 1929 and 1930, this vibrant novel uses unorthodox, kinetic literary techniques to reflect the raw energy of Asakusa, seen through the eyes of a wandering narrator and the cast of mostly female juvenile delinquents who show him their way of life. Markedly different from Kawabata's later work,The Scarlet Gang of Asakusashows this important writer in a new light. The annotated edition of this little-known literary gem includes the original illustrations by Ota Saburo. The annotations illuminate Tokyo society and Japanese literature, bringing this fascinating piece of Japanese modernism at last to a wide audience.

Kawabata Yasunari's first artistic medium was painting, a fact perhaps reflected in his writing's masterful and evocative juxtaposition of imagery. One of Japan's finest novelists, he writes of memories and desires and the intensity of the immediate. His prose is intended to richly suggest more than it declares. For all of his talent and success, Kawabata does not appear to have been a happy man. Knowledgeable in the classics and in Buddhism, he felt a sense of loss and impermanence, as if this world held no particular place for him. Kawabata committed suicide without leaving a word of explanation.

Foreword
Translator's Preface
The Scarlet Gang of Asakusa (Asakusa kurenaidan), 1929-1930
Afterword
Glossary
Selected Bibliography
Illustration
Credits

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