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3.66  ·  Rating Details ·  618 Ratings  ·  70 Reviews
Involves a famous Catholic writer whose comfortable life is shattered when a drunken woman crashes a reception in his honor, claiming that he frequents the red-light district of Tokyo and that his portrait is exhibited in a gallery there. The result: his reputation as a writer, his marriage, and his sense of identity all are placed at risk. A psychological thriller and a ...more
Hardcover, 261 pages
Published August 1st 1988 by Dodd Mead (first published 1986)
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Community Reviews

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There's a wonderful moment in Vladimir Nabokov's Strong Opinions. It's part of a transcript from an interview conducted sometime in the mid-1970s.
Q: Would you care to comment on how the Doppelgänger motif has been both used and abused from Poe, Hoffman, Andersen... Which Doppelgänger fictions would you single out for praise?
VN: The Doppelgänger subject is a frightful bore.

If only Shusako Endo had felt the same way. His penultimate novel, Scandal, is so tightly woven around the concept that it h
Mar 27, 2009 miaaa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to miaaa by: Roos
Hi there,

My name is Ophelia. But there's something else about me that I'd like you to know. You see there's a story why I exist, and I'm not talking about natural birth here. Mia's too shy to tell you this story. And since I'm the bitch one, I guess it's a pleasure hehe

Mia was born in a modest family, I didn't say her family is economically challenged because they're not but hey how much do you think a Protestant priest earns? Certainly not that much. The fact that her father decided to serve i
Aug 03, 2015 Panagiotis rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Αυτό το βιβλίο είναι σαν να είμαι μέσα σε τοπίο του Ogata Kōrin στην αρχή. Κάθεσαι κάτω από τις κερασιές και χαζεύεις ένα ήσυχο ρυάκι. Αλλά υπάρχει κάτι απροσδιόριστο μέσα στην ηρεμία του τοπίου. Κάτι που σε κάνει να κοιτάς ανήσυχα πίσω από τον ώμο σου. Κάτι κακό που παραμονεύει αλλά δεν καταλαβαίνεις τι είναι. Όταν δε αρχίζεις να κατανοείς; τρομάζεις ακόμα περισσότερο.
Μια κάθοδος στον Άδη του ανθρώπινου μυαλού, καταπιεσμένες αισθήσεις που ψάχνουν να βρουν διέξοδο. Ψυχολογικό θρίλερ; ερωτικό; το
Jun 28, 2012 David rated it really liked it
Shelves: big-red-circle
Noah Cross (John Huston) in Chinatown: "I don't blame myself. You see Mr Gitts (sic), most people never have to face the fact that at the right time and at the right place they're capable of ...anything."

I have a weird habit of avoiding Shusaku Endo. I'm always finding his "Samurai" in used bookshops and never buying it. But that will all change now because I really enjoyed this.

Aged Catholic writer (nobody say "the Japanese Graham Greene") is haunted by a lascivious doppelgänger. This doppelgän
Sep 06, 2016 Fabian rated it liked it
Antiquated concepts of sexuality and psychology on display, just not very interesting. Is this the Asian Graham Greene? Oohff!
Nov 20, 2015 Tony rated it really liked it
SCANDAL. (1986; trans. 1988). Shusaku Endo. ****.
Endo was one of the best known writers in Japan, and left a legacy of writing that is still read by his countrymen. This novel, written in the “I-novel” form, explores the secrets that are often hidden in our subconscious, but are not allowed to surface in our day-to-day lives. In this exploration, Suguro, a noted Japanese novelist, finds that he is being pursued by a double. This is bad enough, but the double is behaving in a manner that can ulti
Jun 21, 2010 Jordan rated it it was amazing
One of my favorite books ever. Endo is called the "Japanese Graham Greene" because he happens to be Catholic. That is a sad over simplification. This book, more than some of his others, does have some similarities to Greene, by way of "guilt," but in that sense it reminds me more of Tolstoy's "Resurrection." This book is haunting and terrifying and reads a little like a darker Murakami (Haruki) novel. I read this right after "Sputnik Sweetheart" and I felt there were some weird harmonies between ...more
Jul 01, 2016 umberto rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: japan, novel
A 3.5-star book.

I found reading this 9-chapter novel “Scandal” by Shusaku Endo more enjoyable than his “Silence” (Taplinger, 1980); this one has been translated by Van C. Gessel while the other by William Johnston. I’m not sure if such translations from Japanese have had any significant effect on their readers’ understanding and reading motivation, I mean this should have had supportive evidence, probably, from some research degree projects. However, I think this is only a tentative idea, a tip
Dec 20, 2012 S. rated it liked it
okay, not really stunning. what for a catholic writer comes off as "daring, and gripping descent into sin", is for the modern reader, elicts a reaction (view spoiler). probably more valuable for some theorizing about the nature of artists-- Erich Fromm and the Frankfurt School than any real literary merit.

Endou, a member of international PEN, and part of the "Japanese literary establishment," spends too much time talking about 'the psychology of the
Gertrude & Victoria
Scandal by Endo Shusaku is about human nature and man's struggle with the flesh. Endo sees the dark side of man as inherent to his being, where "good and evil" reside simultaneously within man's soul. In every man lies the potential of evil to flourish.

The main character, a respected novelist and family man, Suguro, is thrown into a state of confusion and anxiety by a woman who claims to know him from the seedy districts of Tokyo. Seeking to clear his good name he searches for the truth. However
Mar 22, 2007 Linda rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: those interested in doppelgangers
trompe l'oeil: visual deception, in which objects are rendered in extremely fine detail emphasizing the illusion of tactile and spatial qualities.
This book posits a fictional trompe l'oeil. An aging nominally-Christian novelist starts seeing his double around the city. Strange gossip begins to swirl about the writer, that he is engaged in debauchery, pedophilia, orgies, cruelties. The writer suspects this double is impersonating him and seeks to meet him in order to unmask him to a journalist w
Oct 04, 2010 Andreea rated it really liked it
It could have had easily 5 stars...but I sense smth that drove me away from it...cannot say exactly what. I mean it is a very good book, no doubt about it, but smth seemed wrong to me... I guess the main question rising is how well we know who we are, how deep are we willing to go swim in in our unconsciousness...are we able to control it a good thing to deny it? Are we whole if we deny it...Are we just beasts, after all, and the only thing that keeps us from falling apart are the moral ...more
Sep 03, 2008 Andy rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Aisan horror movie fans
Shelves: kool-imports
Very similar in style to Kobo Abe in that both breach matters of personal identity, only the scale tips more towards Abe because Endo's Christianity is a little too in your face. It's almost gimmicky and frankly gets in the way of the story, but nevertheless this book almost anticipates the Asian horror movie invasion (The Eye/Abnormal Beauty) by about 10 years. Just leave the Bible at home next time.
Jan 25, 2011 Tony rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: japanese
An aging Japanese Catholic novelist with a dark side writes a novel about an aging Japanese Catholic novelist confronting his dark side. An interesting psychological plot with several promising characters ultimately diffuses in simplistic Catholic guilt. Plot spoiler: the Doppelganger did it.
Aug 29, 2011 Geraud rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
un peu moins bien que prévu.
ce roman est un peu plan plan. Un peu déçu donc par cet auteur qui m'avait épaté avec "Silence".
Apr 17, 2014 Trevor rated it really liked it
I can still remember the first time I confessed to my mother something that I considered to be an egregious sin. In tears, I pleaded, “But mom, that wasn’t me who did it.” In my mind, the self who had committed the act and the self that was confessing the act were two different people.

In what is undoubtedly Endo’s most challenging novel, Scandal (スキャンダル) is a story about the duality of the soul - the light and darkness, beauty and ugliness within us all. Written in the form of an “I-Novel”, or a
Loh, katanya bagus, kok bintangnya 'cuma' 2??!? Yah kalo bintang di sini mencerminkan bagus tidaknya sebuah buku, siapalah saya untuk menilai buku-buku itu. Untunglah, bintang di atas itu hanya nilai untuk my rating, apakah saya suka atau tidak. Dan untuk buku ini, saya sungguh-sungguh merasa bahwa ini buku Bagus (dengan B besar) tapi bernilai 'it was ok' untuk saya, I really don't - or should I say can't - 'liked it'.

Temanya bermain-main di ranah doppelgänger-pribadi ganda-penyamar gadungan, di
Dec 13, 2015 Acharnaikos rated it liked it
Ο Σουγκούρο είναι διάσημος συγγραφέας της Ιαπωνίας. Έχοντας πατήσει τα 65 και με αρκετά λογοτεχνικά βραβεία στη συλλογή του, είναι έτοιμος να παραλάβει ένα ακόμα βραβείο – από τα πιο σημαντικά – για το πρόσφατο μυθιστόρημά του, το οποίο έχει αποσπάσει καταιγισμό επαίνων. Είναι ικανοποιημένος από την οικογενειακή ζωή και το έργο του, καθώς πιστεύει ότι έχει πια να αποκτήσει την πολυπόθητη αρμονία – την απόλυτη ηδονή για αυτόν. Άλλωστε, έχει πια γίνει το πρότυπο ανθρώπου που προβάλλει μέσα από το ...more
Dec 19, 2012 Pearl rated it liked it
I need to admit my prejudices before I write my review. There is something about Japanese literature and films and sometimes even Japanese visual art that I don't care for. Not that they're bad or inferior to other countries or cultures' arts. Just that they doesn't appeal to me.

So while Endo is no doubt a very good and important writer, I did't really like this novel. To me, it depicts the two attributes of beauty and cruelty that seem inherent in Japanese art (written and visual) and are suppo
Amy Gentry
Jun 02, 2016 Amy Gentry rated it really liked it
I picked up Scandal at a used bookstore knowing nothing about Shusaku Endo and thoroughly unprepared for this oddly paced, ugly little thriller of spiritual despair. Protagonist Suguro is a celebrated Japanese novelist similar to Endo in many ways--tubercular, Christian--who is just beginning to sense the end of his life looming ahead. Despite having spent an illustrious career writing hopeful, humanistic novels about his faith, the thought of death doesn't fill Suguro with peaceful thoughts of ...more
Jun 16, 2012 Trias rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Suguro, sosok seorang penulis Katholik kawakan, dianggap masyarakat sangat "suci" dan tidak akan pernah melakukan hal-hal yang melanggar norma dan moral seksualitas apalagi dalam hal sadokis-masokhis. Sungguh jauh dari bayangan penggemar bahkan orang yang tidak memahami sastra sekalipun.

Kehidupan dan tulisannya yang "suci" membuat seorang wartawan, Seguro, muak dan berusaha mencari-cari kesalahan Suguro. Dia mendapati kesalahan tersebut ketika Suguro menerima penghargaan sastra.
Suguro sendiri me
Mhd Sulhan
May 26, 2013 Mhd Sulhan rated it liked it
Jika disuruh mendeskripsikan buku ini dalam tiga kata saya akan menyebutkan "manusia, sex, anxiety".

Anxiety - (KBBI) Sebuah keadaan kekhawatiran, ketidakpastian, dan ketakutan sebagai akibat dari antisipasi terhadap suatu realiatas atau khayalan pada peristiwa atau situasi yang mengancam, sering mengganggu fungsi fisik dan psikologis.

Suatu saat anda akan menua.

Suatu saat anda akan bosan.

Suatu saat anda akan merasa muda kembali.

Suatu saat anda akan merasa bergairah kembali.

Pada manusia, ada hal y
Sep 16, 2011 Anna rated it really liked it
Not for the faint of heart.

But, Endo. I appreciate taking it on. And, I have to say I trust him, though I am not sure the book does all it can.

I have read two others by Endo this summer-- Silence and Deep River, both extraordinary books. Silence in which a priest has all but belief at the time of the persecution when Portugese priests come to Japan--he is pushed literally to the edge of it and Deep River--a story of Japanese tourists in India at the Ganges River (honestly, anyone who has read Ge
Zach Branson
Jun 26, 2016 Zach Branson rated it it was ok
I remember Vladimir Nabokov once said about Lolita that (more or less), "It was almost impossible to publish - regular publishers thought it was too pornographic, and more racy publishers thought it wasn't pornographic enough."

This is where Scandal is somewhat similar to Lolita. The first part becomes suddenly really erotic, but somehow the middle-schooler in Scandal that openly talks about prostitution to old men is not as believable as Lolita. To make things more confusing, this middle-schoole
Ordinary Dahlia
Jul 26, 2010 Ordinary Dahlia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Aneh, kudengar buku ini baru pertama kali diterjemahkan dalam bahasa tapi aku sangat yakin pernah membaca terjemahannya pas kuliah dulu, jadi ini kedua kalinya baca
Pertama baca memang bingung dan baru berkenalan dengan yang namanya sadisme-masokist (SM) *sayah masih lugu waktu ituh, maaf maaf sajah hahaha...boonk!*

Kali ini terasa berbeda karena aku merasa cukup terbuka untuk mencoba memahaminya (walau belum bisa mengerti dan menerima konsep kenikmatan dalam SM mengingat aku benci setengah mati r
Natasha Primaditta
There are certain aspects that I like in Japanese literature; 1) they are very imaginative, 2) sometimes too imaginative, 3) entangled with mysteries, and 4) even absurd. When I read books that were written by Japanese author, I don't feel restrictions within the story they spun. There are times that I questioned, 'why is it so?'. Then I read this book, about a popular Christian author, Suguro-sensei, whose comfortable and peaceful life starts to shake due to unruly rumour about him visiting ...more
Jayan Parameswaran
Shusaku Endo's novel, examines the darker side of human life. The duality of the public image and the hidden dark side, which comes out unnoticed to the person himself. One has no control on his on adverse side, and its actions. At many a time, one can not comprehend their own behaviour. The revelation of his own darker side was a shock to Endo, at the same time a relief. Endo, excels in this examination of duality in human life. Its this meditation, its this abandonment to the reality, its this ...more
Suguro, a Christian novelist like Endo, is threatened by a strange double of himself who's seen frequenting scandalous places. Over the course of the novel, he meets a woman named Madame Naruse who sparks a desire in him to understand a darker side of humanity than what he'd previously been willing to explore in his novels. A journalist named Kobari, threatened by Suguro's success, appears throughout the book trying to bring him down. Suguro begins to question whether this double of his actually ...more
Daniela Serban
Sep 10, 2016 Daniela Serban rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: japanese
Interesting. Can't say I was surprised by the ending, the whole thing was pretty obvious, but an enjoyment nonetheless. I like novels that look into the dark corners of humanity rather than only seeing it as light and rainbows...
Nov 09, 2012 Jonathan rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Readers who like a novel with philosophic undertones, and elements of psychology.
Recommended to Jonathan by: My English teacher
Well, a good read indeed, with an intriguing story to tell.
Although one shouldn't read it for the sake of its plot -because, however well worked, it is not the strongest point of the book- readers will love the unique 'gray' narrative, as the writer builds on his novel with a dark tone.
It is a book about old age, and in that respect only it might remind you of the 'Steppenwolf' by Herman Hesse - at least it happened to me.
Having read only Haruki Murakami before Endo, this book only confirms that
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The Theme of Old Age in Shusaku Endo's Scandal 2 9 May 08, 2013 03:19AM  
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Shusaku ENDO (遠藤 周作), born in Tokyo in 1923, was raised by his mother and an aunt in Kobe where he converted to Roman Catholicism at the age of eleven. At Tokyo's Keio University he majored in French literature, graduating BA in 1949, before furthering his studies in French Catholic literature at the University of Lyon in France between 1950 and 1953. A major theme running through his books, which ...more
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“True religion should be able to respond to the dark melodies, the faulty and hideous sounds that echo from the heart of men.” 21 likes
“A person never knows their own true face. Everybody thinks that the phoney, posed social mask they wear is their real face.” 14 likes
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