SHIMAKI KENSAKU


SHIMAKI KENSAKU
(1903–1945)
   Shimaki Kensaku was the pen name of novelist Asakura Kikuo, born in Sapporo. He attended Tohoku University but contracted tuberculosis and was forced to drop out. Living in poverty, he became attracted to the labor movement and moved to a farm in Shikoku. He later joined the Communist Party and spent years in prison as a result, but was finally released because of his worsening tuberculosis. Shimaki’s novel Rai (Leprosy, 1934), based on his prison experiences, was serialized in the literary journal Bungaku Hyoron (Literary Review) to critical acclaim. In 1937, Shimaki moved to Kamakura where he joined the literary circle of Kawabata Yasunari, Kobayashi Hideo, and Takami Jun. He lost his battle with tuberculosis shortly thereafter.

Historical dictionary of modern Japanese literature and theater. . 2009.

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