Rising from the Flames: The Rebirth of Theater in Occupied Japan, 1945-1952

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Samuel L. Leiter
Rowman & Littlefield, 2009 - Всего страниц: 429
On August 15, 1945, when the war ended, almost all of Tokyo and Osaka's theaters had been destroyed or heavily damaged by American bombs. The Japanese urban infrastructure was reduced to dust, and so, one might have thought, would be the nation's spirit, especially in the face of nuclear bombing and foreign occupation. Yet, less than two weeks after the atom bombs had been dropped, theater began to show signs of life. Before long, all forms of Japanese theater were back on stage, and from death's ashes arose the flower of art. Rising from the Flames contains sixteen essays, many accompanied by photographic illustrations, by thirteen specialists. They explore the triumphs and tribulations of Occupation-period (1945-1952) theater, and cover not only such traditional forms as kabuki, no, kyogen, bunraku puppet theater (as well as the traditional marionette theater, the Yuki-za), and the comic narrator's art of rakugo, but also the modern genres of shingeki, musical comedy, and the all-female Takarazuka Revue. Among the numerous topics discussed are censorship, theater reconstruction, politics, internationalization, unionization, the search for a national identity through drama, and the treatment of the emperor on the pre- and postwar stage. The essays in this volume examine how Japanese theater, subject to oppressive thought control by prewar authorities, responded to the new--if temporarily limited--freedom allowed by the American occupiers, attesting to Japan's remarkable resilience in the face of national defeat.

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From Bombs to Booms When the Occupation Met Kabuki
Playing for the Majors and the Minors Ichikawa Girls Kabuki on the Postwar Stage
The Good Censors Evading the Threat to Postwar Kabuki
The Mitsukoshi Gekijō The Little Theater That Could
Performing the Emperors New Clothes The Mikado The Tale of Genji and Lèse Majesté on the Japanese Stage
Other Traditional Theaters
Mitsuwa Kai vs Shōchiku Occupation Reforms and the Unionization of Bunraku
Surviving and Succeeding The Yūkiza Marionette Theater Company
Laughter after Wars Rakugo during the Occupation
Modern Theater
SCAPs Problem Child American Aesthetics the Shingeki Stage and the Occupation of Japan
From War Responsibility to the Red Purge Politics Shingeki and the Case of Kubo Sakae
A Fabulous Fake Folklore and the Search for National Identity in Kinoshita Junjis Twilight Crane
To the Rhythm of Jazz Enokens Postwar Musical Comedies

Nō and Kyōgen during the Occupation

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Об авторе (2009)

Samuel L. Leiter is Distinguished Professor of Theater Emeritus, Brooklyn College, CUNY, and the Graduate Center, CUNY.

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