Yasunari Kawabata

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Kawabata, Yasunari

(yäso͞onä`rē käwä`bätä), 1899–1972, Japanese novelist. His first major work was The Izu Dancer, (1925). He came to be a leader of the school of Japanese writers that propounded a lyrical and impressionistic style, in opposition to the proletarian literature of the 1920s. Kawabata's melancholy novels often treat, in a delicate, oblique fashion, sexual relationships between men and women. For example, Snow Country (tr. 1956), probably his best-known work in the West, depicts the affair of an aging geisha and an insensitive Tokyo businessman. All Kawabata's works are distinguished by a masterful, and frequently arresting, use of imagery. Among his works in English translation are the novels Thousand Cranes (tr. 1959), The Sound of the Mountain (tr. 1970), and The Lake (tr. 1974), and volumes of short stories, The House of the Sleeping Beauties and Other Stories (tr. 1969) and First Snow on Fuji (tr. 1999). In 1968, Kawabata became the first Japanese author to receive the Nobel Prize in Literature. Four years later, in declining health and probably depressed by the suicide of his friend Yukio MishimaMishima, Yukio
, 1925–70, Japanese author, b. Tokyo. His original name was Kimitake Hiraoka and he was born into a samurai family. Mishima wrote novels, short stories, essays, and plays. He appeared on stage in some of his plays as well as directing and starring in films.
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, he committed suicide.


See his Nobel Prize speech, Japan the Beautiful and Myself (tr. 1969); study by G. B. Petersen (1979).

Kawabata, Yasunari


Born June 11, 1899, in Osaka; died Apr. 16, 1972, in Zushi. Japanese writer; member of the Japanese Academy of Art (1953). Son of a doctor.

Kawabata graduated from the department of Japanese philology of the University of Tokyo in 1924. During the early 1920’s he became part of the modernistic group of neosensual-ists. His first important work, The Izu Dancer (1926), is a lyrical story about youth. Several of Kawabata’s works (for example, the short story “Crystal Fantasia”) were written under the influence of J. Joyce; however, the core of his artistic thought is based on the aesthetics of Zen, which rejects the rational view of the world and stresses that which is natural and artless. The originality of Kawabata’s artistic style is particularly evident in his lyric novella Snow Country (1937), which consists of a series of short stories joined only by their poetic associations. The tea ceremony, an ancient custom raised to the level of a unique art, forms the basis of Kawabata’s novella Thousand Cranes (1951), for which he received the prize of the Japanese Academy of Art. His novels The Sound of the Mountain (1953) and The Old Capital (1961) are characterized by their inner lyricism. In 1968, Kawabata was awarded the Nobel Prize; his books have been translated into many languages.


Kawabata Yasunari zenshu, vols. 1–12. Tokyo, 1960.
In Russian translation:
In the collection Iaponskaia novella. Moscow, 1961.
Tysiachekrylyi zhuravl’. Moscow, 1971.


Grigor’eva, I. “Chitaia Kavabata Iasunari.” Inostrannaia literatura, 1971, no. 8.
Saegusa Iasutaka. Kawabata Yasunari. Tokyo, 1961.


References in periodicals archive ?
Yasunari Kawabata publico en 1964 la novela Lo bello y lo triste cuya primera edicion en Mexico fue pubicada a principios de este ano por EMECE Editores y Grupo Planeta.
Me parecia increible: en la primavera anterior habia leido una hermosa novela de Yasunari Kawabata sobre los ancianos burgueses de Kyoto que pagaban sumas enormes para pasar la noche contemplando a las muchachas mas bellas de la ciudad, desnudas y narcotizadas, mientras ellos agonizaban de amor en la misma cama.
Asi comienza el libro y el prologo que le antecede es la primera oracion del cuento "La Casa de las Bellas Durmientes", escrito por Yasunari Kawabata (1899-1972), premio Nobel de Literatura en 1968, y que se suicido a sus 73 anos.
El otro libro que volvi a leer fue La casa de las bellas dormidas, de Yasunari Kawabata, que me habia golpeado en el alma hace unos tres anos y que sigue siendo un libro hermoso.
El primero es: "Pasaban los anos, y la unica persona que no cambiaba era la joven de su libro", de Yasunari Kawabata, que nos anticipa, como ingredientes de lo que leeremos, el paso del tiempo, una variedad de personas, la presencia de una joven, un libro, alguien que escribe y/o que lee ese libro.
It is the delicate and challenging text of the short story Amagasa (Umbrella) by Yasunari Kawabata.
Compellingly written by Yasunari Kawabata (the author of the classic "Snow Country" and Japan's first winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature), The Lake is the story of a stalker.
The film already was famous in South Korea for a reason that had little to do with the Nobel Prize won in the 1960s by Yasunari Kawabata, author of the original "Snow Country.
PLEASE TEL 03-5573-8089) Edward Seidensticker, noted translator of ''The Tale of Genji'' and works by Yasunari Kawabata and Mishima Yukio, is saddened by the decline of Tokyo's ''shitamachi'' -- the traditional downtown areas once the source of cultural riches.
Tadeusz Konwicki, A Dreambook for Our Time Lady Murasaki, The Tale of Genji Cormac McCarthy, All the Pretty Horses Lautreamont, Maldoror Vasily Grossman, Life and Fate Tolstoy, War and Peace Yasunari Kawabata, Snow Country Hemingway, Islands in the Stream The Poetic Edda The tales of Chekhov The tales of Hawthorne Njal's Saga Sigrid Unset, Kristin Lavransdatter Melville, The Piazza Tales London, Martin Eden Julio Cortazar, Hopscotch The poems of Emily Dickinson Faulkner, Pylon and The Sound and the Fury Homer, the Odyssey and the Iliad Nikos Kazantzakis, The Odyssey: A Modern Sequel Heidegger, Being and Time Poe, The Narrative of A.
Escrita tambien por Shunji Iwai, Carta de amor posee la sutileza de los relatos de Yasunari Kawabata.