Wednesday, March 12, 2008

"Solidarity of the Abandoned"

I am reading a real page-turner -- "MEMUSHIRI KOUCHI (NIP THE BUDS, SHOOT THE KIDS)," the 1958 novel by Nobel Prize-winner KENZABURO OE.
Set in Japan during the latter days of World War II, the novel follows the exploits of a group of reformatory school boys evacuated to a remote mountain village to avoid increased aerial bombing.
Shortly after their arrival, the villagers flee the village, abandoning the adolescents in the face of a growing threat of plague, which has already killed domestic animals and a few humans.
I have read that "Memushiri Kouchi" is the Japanese version of "Lord of the Flies," but thus far the characters have interacted well in the face of the sudden departure of the villagers.
I really enjoy this novel, and I might next turn my attention to Oe's 1967 classic, "Man'en Gannen no Futtoboru," a.k.a. "Football in the First Year of Man'en," but best known in America as "The Silent Cry."


Blogger If I just lay here... said...

thoughts on HSM...

I have something that makes my students think I'm cool.

6:10 PM  

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