by Malika from Lyon
Kimitake Hiraoka was born in Tokyo on January 14th 1925 and died on November 25th 1970. He was and he is still one of the best Japanese writer; his life, his thoughts and his works are full of passion. In fact in the books like Confessions of a Mask (1949), Forbidden colours (1951), The Sailor who fell from Grace with the sea (1963) or in his last series of four books The Sea of Fertility we can understand how he listened to, lived in and looked upon the World.
Using the penname Yukio Mishima, Kimitake Hiraoka communicated with the future winner of the Nobel prize, Yasunari Kawabata. Today he is considered as Mishima’s mentor because their important and beautiful correspondence probably helped the young Yukio to bear and to recognize his own talent. Thanks to his ‘popularity’ he finally decided to reveal his personal dream and his homosexuality (even he got married with Yoko Sugiyama because “to love men doesn’t mean to marry men”).
Since his death a lot of people have regarded him as a mad, a racist and a xenophobe. But I really think that their descriptions are too simplistic. If we really get into his life and his thoughts we will realize that he was just an admirer of human passions, traditional Japan and especially samurais’ ways of life (bushido). That was the reason why he has also organised a private army called the “Shield Society” whose only duty was to protect the Emperor.
In his last speech he implored the mobilisation of all strengths to preserve the Japanese ancestral splendour. And it was facing the opposition that he decided to carry out seppuku (traditional suicide). I think nobody is able to tell which enemy was he facing but that ‘vague and general” enemy is just one more part of Mishima’s mystery.
Who is my hero? What is a hero? It is a person who is admired for having done something very brave. Here we can’t say that carrying out seppuku is brave; in fact he just escaped from the reality and left the world in its decay. But I still consider him as a hero. Although he hasn’t made a difference in my life, his credit is to remind and probably to teach us the real meaning of the word PASSION.
Page created on 10/16/2009 12:47:32 PM
Last edited 10/16/2009 12:47:32 PM
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