The Silent Cry

The Silent Cry

Book - 1974
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The Silent Cry traces the uneasy relationship between two brothers who return to their ancestral home, a village in densely forested western Japan. While one brother tries to sort out the after-effects of a friend's suicide and the birth of a retarded son, the other embarks on a quixoticmission to incite an uprising among the local youth. Oe's description of this brother's messianic struggle to save a disintegrating local culture and economy from the depredations of a Korean wheeler-dealer called "The Emperor of the Supermarkets" is as chillingly pertinent today as it was whenfirst published in 1967. Powerful and daring, The Silent Cry is a thoroughly compelling classic of world literature.
Publisher: Tokyo : Kodansha International ; New York : Distributed by Harper & Row, [1974]
ISBN: 9780870112324
Call Number: F
Characteristics: 274 p. ; 22 cm


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Jun 18, 2018

This was a book that helped its author, Kenzaburo Oe, win a Nobel Prize. I had real difficulty reading it at first, although it got easier in the last third of the book. The novel details the conflict between two adult brothers in Japan in the early 1960s and how their conflict is intertwined with the family history--or what they each understand to be the family history--dating back to 1860. Set in a rural area of Shikoku, the story has one brother organizing what amounts to a cult to encourage local villagers to rise up against a Korean-run supermarket. Perhaps this book would be better if I read it again. Or not.


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