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Toppamono: Outlaw. Radical. Suspect. My Life in Japan's Underworld

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3.97  ·  Rating Details  ·  32 Ratings  ·  6 Reviews
Shot, stabbed, and beaten, Miyazaki Manabu somehow emerged intact from his first fifty years to put his astonishing life story down on paper. Born the son of a yakuza boss in 1945, he grew up in a household of gang members and social misfits before his conversion to Marxism launched him into the violent world of 1960s student radicalism. After dropping out of university an ...more
Hardcover, 480 pages
Published June 15th 2005 by Kotan Publishing
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 100)
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Bruce
May 24, 2014 Bruce rated it really liked it
Shelves: yakuza, japan
If you want to hear about old school yakuza gangs, Japanese student riots in the 60s from the perspective of one involved this is a pretty good read.
Jamie
Apr 27, 2009 Jamie rated it really liked it
Shelves: history
A life story too disparate and weird to be fiction, Manabu Miyazaki's memoir is a fascinating first person account of the past fifty years of Japanese history by someone who always seemed to be in the middle of something huge.

Written for a Japanese audience, this book may not make much sense to anyone unfamiliar with modern Japan. It is also not the best written book, and doesn't have much of an overall arc, sometimes the narrative is interrupted completely to go on a tangential anecdote that w
...more
J
Jul 09, 2011 J rated it liked it
Shelves: reviewed
For some very unknown reason, I absolutely love all things yakuza. Actually, I like all things gangster, but there’s something about the Japanese yakuza culture in particular that appeals to me. Miyazaki is not yakuza. He just happens to know a few. The title leads you to believe that the book is more interesting than it is. Toppamono is a very long, autobiographical vanity piece written by someone who is very clearly not a writer. Toppamono does detail the political unrest in Japan in the 60′s ...more
James
Apr 16, 2012 James rated it really liked it
This memoir style book was a very interesting read. It gives a unique perspective on the life of an outsider in Japanese society. A significant portion read like fiction because of the grandiose telling of the story by the other. If even half of this book is true, Miyazaki would officially be the most interesting man in the world.
Dillon Font
Apr 22, 2012 Dillon Font rated it really liked it
A fascinating look not only at the economics and lives of the Japanese underworld during Showa Japan, but also provides a backstage view of the student riots of the 60s
Miami University Libraries
Sep 23, 2011 Miami University Libraries marked it as to-read
Shelves: banned-books
Banned/challenged in Japan
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