- Kōbō Abe
pseudonymof Kimifusa Abe ("Abe Kimifusa", March 7, 1924– January 22, 1993) was a Japanese writer, playwright, photographer and inventor.
His name is
romanizedas "Kobo Abe" in Vintage International's English-language editions of his book, while Columbia UniversityPress offers "Three Plays by Kōbō Abe".
Abe was born in Kita,
Tokyo, grew up in Mukden (now Shen-yang) in Manchuria, this early life experience in Manchuria gave Abe‘s novels very romanticand honest colors. His father was a physician who taught at the medical college. Abe returned to Japanin 1941 and began studies at Tokyo Imperial Universityin 1943. He graduated in 1948 with a medical degree, on the condition that he would not practice. He was first published as a poet with "Mumei Shishu" ("Poems of an unknown poet") in 1947. The next year he published his first novel, "Owarishi michi no shirube ni" ("The Road Sign at the End of the Street") which established his reputation. He worked as an avant-gardenovelist and playwright, but it was not until he published "The Woman in the Dunes" in 1962 that he won widespread international acclaim.
In 1973, he founded an acting studio in Tokyo, where he trained performers in his innovative performance methods and directed plays.
Abe's surreal and often nightmarish explorations of the individual in contemporary society earned him comparisons to Kafka and his influence extended well beyond Japan, particularly with the success of
Woman in the Dunesat the Cannes Film Festival. Kenzaburō Ōewas one of Abe's friends. Oe said he thinks Abe's novels are beyond his work and are as great as Kafka's and Faulkner's, Nobel Prize in Literaturethat Kōbō Abe shoud took before him, in fact Kōbō Abe had nominated many times with Nobel Prize. Critics thought his literary style similar Alberto Moraviaso interesting, modernismand charming.
ummaries of selected works
"The Ruined Map" (1964)
In order to locate a timid woman's missing husband, a
private investigatorabandons his own identity.
"The Ark Sakura" (1984)
nuclear holocaust, an obese survivalistnamed "Mole" builds a sprawling, technologically well-equipped shelter out of an abandoned quarry. Challenges mount as the insect salesman and pair of shills that he has recruited as crew members start making demands and an elderly brigade of street-sweepers threatens invasion.
"Kangaroo Notebook" (1991)
After seeking treatment for a patch of radish sprouts discovered growing on his legs, an office supply worker is taken on a journey through various surreal locales by a hospital bed with a mind of its own.
List of books available in English
*nihongo|"Inter Ice Age 4"|第四間氷期|Daiyon kampyōki 1959 (translated by
E. Dale Saunders)
*nihongo|"Woman in the Dunes"|砂の女|Suna no onna 1962 (translated by E. Dale Saunders)
The Face of Another"|他人の顔|Tanin no kao 1964 (translated by E. Dale Saunders)
*nihongo|"The Ruined Map"|燃え尽きた地図|Moetsukita chizu 1967 (translated by E. Dale Saunders)
*nihongo|"Friends" (play)|友達|Tomodachi 1967
The Man Who Turned Into A Stick" (play)|棒になった男|Bō ni natta otoko
*nihongo|"The Box Man"|箱男|Hako otoko 1973 (translated by E. Dale Saunders)
*nihongo|"Kangaroo Notebook"|カンガルー・ノート ca 1973 - 1977(translated by Maryellen Toman Mori)
*nihongo|"Secret Rendezvous"|密会|Mikkai 1977 (translated by
Juliet Winters Carpenter)
*nihongo|"The Ark Sakura"|方舟さくら丸|Hakobune Sakura-maru 1984 (translated by Juliet Winters Carpenter)
*"Beyond the Curve" (short stories) 1990 (translated by Juliet Winters Carpenter)
*"Three Plays by Kobo Abe" 1993 (translated by
Encyclopædia Britannica2005 Ultimate Reference Suite DVD", article- "Abe Kōbō".
*"Abe Kobo: an Exploration of his Prose, Drama, and Theatre" by Timothy Iles. Published by EPAP, 2000.
Akutagawa Prize- "The Crime of S. Karuma", "(Kabe S. Karuma shi no hanzai,nihongo2|「壁 S・カルマ氏の犯罪」)
Yomiuri Prize- "Woman in the Dunes"
Tanizaki Prize- "Friends, (Tomodachi, nihongo2|友達)"
*isfdb name|id=Kobo_Abe|name=Kobo Abe
*iblist name|id=7093|name=Kobo Abe
*ibdof name|id=614|name=Kobo Abe
* [http://www.ibiblio.org/abekobo/index.html Abe Kobo at ibiblio.org]
* [http://web.archive.org/web/20070922061219/http://www.litweb.net/biography/90/Kobo_Abe.html LitWeb.net: Kobo Abe Biography]
* [http://www.themodernword.com/scriptorium/abe.html The Modern Word: Kobo Abe]
* [http://web.archive.org/web/20070310184546/http://www.centerforbookculture.org/review/02_2_inter/interview_masaki.html Interview with Goro Masaki about Japanese Science Fiction, large part devoted to Kobo Abe's work]
* [http://www.horror-house.jp/e/cat4/kobo-abe-19241993.html Kōbō Abe's grave]
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