Born Sept. 5, 1913, on the island of Okinawa. Japanese writer.
Shimoda graduated from the department of English literature of the University of Tokyo in 1939. During his years at the university he became acquainted with Marxism. In 1940 he was drafted into the army. He later drew upon his military experiences for many antimilitary works, including the novel The Japanese Soldier (1970; Russian translation, 1975).
One of the main themes of Shimoda’s works is the historical destiny of his native island. In the novels The Island of Okinawa (1957) and The Fig Tree (1962), the Okinawans’ civil-rights movement is portrayed as a vital part of the class struggle of the Japanese people. The novel Dawn (1970, Kobayashi Takiji and Miyamoto Yuriko Prize) also deals with the struggle for liberation of the inhabitants of Okinawa. Shimoda is chairman of the Union of Democratic Literature of Japan, which was created in 1965.