Yoko Tawada Wins the U.S. National Book Award

The English edition of "Kentoshi," or "The Emissary," a work by Berlin-based Japanese writer Yoko Tawada (b. 23rdMarch 1960), has won the U.S. National Book Award in the translated literature section. Tawada has won numerous Japanese and German literary awards, including the Akutagawa Prize, the Tanizaki Prize, the Noma Literary Prize etc. She writes in both languages, Japanese as well as in German. The National Book Awards are one of the most distinguished literary prizes in the United States. Jiji Press reported that the winners of this year's awards were announced on Wednesday local time.
Tawada, expressed her joy while talking with reporters at Waseda University in Tokyo recently. "I take my winning of the award as a message that it is necessary to look at the world at a time when the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump takes a stance of not giving consideration to other countries under his 'America First' policy," she stated. There are many creative artistic works, related to natural disasters, penned down by the Japanese authors. Kentoshi too is based on such a theme. This has been categorized as a dystopian novel, depicting an elderly man and his great-grandchild living in a difficult situation in Japan after a catastrophe. Shadow of 2011 earthquake and tsunami is very obvious in the milieu of the novel.
[Center for Culture & Global Studies Editorial Team]  


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