The Journal of Japanese Studies

 

Abstract

REIKO ABE AUESTAD
Nakano Shigeharu’s “Goshaku no sake”

“Goshaku no sake” (Five cups of sake, 1947) was the first postwar literary work by Nakano Shigeharu, a communist writer whose critical stance toward the imperial institution was well known.  The work attracted attention because it was expected to tell the reader how Nakano would grapple with the question of the symbolic emperor in the postwar democratic system.  The dominant autobiographical reading tended to reduce the text’s message to a simple matter of left-and-right politics.  This essay tries to offer a different reading by focusing on the subtle and complex layering of political and emotional responses underlying the narrator’s attitude.  This new reading throws into relief the narrator’s broadly moral concerns transcending partisan politics, which in turn enriches our view of the Japanese postwar experience and the narrator-author’s position in it.

Volume 28, Number 1 (Winter 2002)
© 2002 Society for Japanese Studies

 

Marie Anchordoguy and Kevin M. Doak, Coeditors     Martha L. Walsh, Managing Editor
The Journal of Japanese Studies
University of Washington     Box 353650     Seattle, WA 98195-3650 U.S.A.
Phone 206-543-9302    Fax 206-685-0668    Email
jjs@u.washington.edu
© Copyright 2004-2008  Society for Japanese Studies