Ota Yoko

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Ota Yoko


Born Nov. 18, 1906, in Hiroshima; died Dec. 10, 1963, in the prefecture of Fukushima. Japanese writer.

Ota’s first works, published in the 1930’s, adhered to the “art for art’s sake” trend and depicted mainly melodramatic romantic adventures, as seen in the novel The Shore of Wandering (1939) and the novella The Land of Cherries (1940).

Ota was in Hiroshima during the atom bomb explosion of 1945. This event proved to be a turning point in her work, which became imbued with a civic spirit and an awareness of her responsibility to her epoch. Ota’s principal postwar theme was the tragedy of the atomic catastrophe in Hiroshima; examples are the novellas City of Corpses (forbidden by the occupation authorities; published 1948), Human Rags (1951), and A Semihuman (1954) and the short stories Sick Leaves (1958) and The Lower Depths (1960). She decried atomic war and advocated peace. Ota died from the aftereffects of radiation.


In Russian translation:
“Do kakikh por.” Inostrannaia literatura, 1955, no. 3.


Rekho, K. “Khirosima i literatura.” In Ideologicheskaia bor’ba v literature i iskusstve. Moscow, 1972.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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Some chapters (for example, the one on Ota Yoko) survey a writer's entire oeuvre.