By Rebecca Suter
Of specific curiosity is the repeated reappearance in smooth fiction of the so-called “Christian century” of Japan (1549–1638), the interval among the coming of the Jesuit missionaries and the final Christian insurrection earlier than the ultimate ban at the overseas faith. Literary authors as diverse as Akutagawa Ryūnosuke, Endō Shūsaku, Yamada Fūtarō, and Takemoto Novala, in addition to movie administrators, manga and anime authors, and videogame manufacturers have all expressed their fascination with the lives and works of Catholic missionaries and jap converts and produced imaginitive reinterpretations of the interval. In Holy Ghosts, Rebecca Suter explores the explanations at the back of the recognition of the Christian century in smooth jap fiction and displays at the position of cross-cultural representations in Japan. because the beginning of the ports within the Meiji interval, Japan’s dating with Euro-American tradition has oscillated among a force in the direction of Westernization and an antithetical urge to “return to Asia.” Exploring the twentieth-century’s fascination with the Christian Century permits Suter to mirror on sleek Japan’s complicated blend of Orientalism, self-Orientalism, and Occidentalism.
By on reflection at a time whilst the japanese interacted with Europeans in ways in which have been either just like and various from smooth dealings, fictional representations of the Christian century supply a chance to mirror severely not just on cross-cultural negotiation but additionally extra extensively on either jap and Western social and political formations. The ghosts of the Christian century that hang-out sleek eastern fiction hence advised us to reconsider traditional notions of East-West exchanges, mutual representations, and tool family members, complicating our knowing of world modernity.
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Holy Ghosts: The Christian Century in Modern Japanese Fiction by Rebecca Suter