By now, Yukio Mishima’s (1925-1970) dramatic demise through an act of seppuku after an inflammatory public speech has become the stuff of literary legend. With Patriotism, Mishima was able to give his heartwrenching patriotic idealism an immortal vessel. A lieutenant in the Japanese army comes home to his wife and informs her that his closest friends have become mutineers....more
However, I have since had time to think about the Mishima/samurai/seppuku debacle, and now I'm not so impressed anymore.
Besides general issues that I may have with Mishima's political sentiments, the real seppuku undertaken by Mishima and his friends was a much less romantic undertaking and much more of a horribly messy affair.
In fact, horrific in it's garb...more
Who says that he has to kill his friends? He's not even sure if he's going to be ordered to kill them, or if he's going to be leading the unit. So why is he going to kill himself? It surely can't be out of patriotism--or at least our definition of patriotism: "love of one's...more
It is my first of Mishima. In fact I wanted to try out this before venturing into his other works. And now I am just stupefied. A novella that contains one of the powerful beginnings. The novella begins with a first chapter of just two pages in which the reader is already told of the tragedy. And then he narrates the events. The tragedy is always on every page and at the end when it really happens it is unbearable and you chok...more
Also, and I know it's odd to post this question here, but I came across this line in the Wikipedia entry on Mishima:
"In 1962, Mishima's most avant-garde work, Utsukushii Hoshi (Beautiful Star), which at times comes close to science fiction, was pu...more
He writes with sweeping power in a style so subtle, yet so...more
a little history on the great mishima..
"On November 25, 1970, Mishima and four members of the Tatenokai, under pretext, visited the commandant of the Ichigaya Camp - the Tokyo headquarters of the Eastern Command of Japan's Self-Defense Forces. Inside, they barricaded the office and tied the commandant to his chair. With a prepared manifesto and banner listing their demands, Mishima stepped onto the balcony to address the soldiers gathered below. His speech was intended to inspire...more
i don't need to give some wide-eyed slack-jawed revelation of the fact that *gasp* he actuall...more
i watched that gus van sant film, finding forrester, recently and saw a book by yukio mishima on one of the character's bookshelves. i had no idea who he was or what he was about. flash forward a few days, and i see this novella on a spinner at left bank. after picking it up and reading it in half an hour, i must repeat myself: whoa.
prepare yourself to be both repulsed and amazed. one of those reads, for me, where i was quite offended by undertones of misogyny an...more
Patriotism is a concise, graphic depiction of the ritual double-suicide of a young Lieutenant and his wife during the famous 2-2-6 incident. It has been said that this book depicts Mishima's ideology and was the prototype for his later self-immolation.
Strange that such powerful writing is contained is such a short book.
Mishima wrote 40 novels, 18 plays, 20 books of short stories, and at least 20 books of essays, one libretto, as well as one film. A large portion of this oeuvre comprises books written quickly for profit, but even if these are disregard...more