Episode 2: Nosaka Akiyuki and Legacies of Imperial Japan
This episode of East Asia for All is about the life and work of Japanese novelist, singer, and political figure Nosaka Akiyuki. Part of the Yakeato generation who came of age during WWII, Nosaka's experiences of the war became the subject matter of some of his most famous works. In this episode, we talk in particular about his short stories “Grave of the Fireflies” and “American Hijiki." "Grave of the Fireflies" was also made into an anime film in 1988 by Studio Ghibli. Nosaka Akiyuki passed away in December of 2015.
We are also joined in this episode by our colleague Dr. Alan Christy from the University of California, Santa Cruz, who specializes in the history of modern Japan.
You can find our podcast on the iTunes store or listen to it below. Thanks for listening!
- Grave of the Fireflies (1988, Japanese with English subtitles) on Youtube
- Akiyuki Nosaka, "A Grave of Fireflies," trans. James R. Abrams in Japan Quarterly, 25.4 (October-December 1978), 445-462.
- "Takahata and Nosaka: Two Grave Voices in Animation," Animerica (1994, Vol. 2, No. 11)
- Grave of the Fireflies movie review by Roger Ebert (2000.03.19)
- Akiyuki Nosaka, “American Hijiki,” in Contemporary Japanese Literature: An Anthology of Fiction, Film, and Other Writing since 1945, ed. Howard Hibbett (Boston: Cheng & Tsui, 2005), 435–62.
- Susan Napier, "World War II as Trauma, Memory and Fantasy in Japanese Animation," The Asia-Pacific Journal (2005)
- Hiroko Cockerill, "Laughter and Tears: The Complex Narratives of Shōwa Gesaku Writer Nosaka Akiyuki," Japanese Studies (2007)
- Roman Rosenbaum, "The 'Generation of the Burnt-out Ruins,'" Japanese Studies (2007)
- Wendy Goldberg, "Transcending the Victim's History: Takahata Isao's 'Grave of the Fireflies,'" Mechademia (2009)
- Higa, Tomiko, and Dorothy Britton. The Girl with the White Flag. New York City: Kodansha USA, 2013.
- "Obituary: Akiyuki Nosaka: Author who recalled the fire-bombing of Japanese cities in his best-known work, Grave of the Fireflies," Independent (2016.02.11)