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Land of Volcanic Ash: A Play in Two Parts by KUBO Sakae

40 LandVolcanicAsh
Translated and introduced by David G. GOODMAN
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Kubo Sakae's Land of Volcanic Ash (Kazanbaichi) is recognized as the major socialist realist drama of pre-war Japan. The play, which describes the struggles of a reform-minded intellectual in the Hokkaido countryside, is based on events surrounding the famine of 1934. It has been described not only as Kubo Sakae's most representative work, but as the finest realist drama of the pre-war period. | 250 pages


  • Acknowledgments
  • Introduction
  • Cast of Characters
  • Act One: A New Year's Market
  • Act Two: A New Year's Party
  • Act Three: Inspection at the Kilns
  • Act Four: The Experimental Fields
  • Act Five: The Flax Mill
  • Act Six: The festival (Day)
  • Act Seven: The festival (Night)
  • Appendix: Scientific Names of Major Plants Mentioned in the Text

  • "Land of Volcanic Ash makes a major contribution to our understanding of the nature and history of shingeki, its practitioners, major works and significance as an intellectual phenomenon." — Journal of Association of Teachers of Japanese
  • "Kubo Sakae is among the most important modern Japanese playwrights, and Goodman has made him an open door for Western readers." — Journal of Asian Studies

  • KUBO Sakae, Author.
  • David Goodman (1946-2011) is the translator of After Apocalypse: Four Japanese Plays of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, editor of Five Plays by Kishida Kunio; and author of Japanese Drama and Culture in the 1960s. He was Professor of East Asian Languages and Cultures at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

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