Powered by ProofFactor - Social Proof Notifications

Japanese Modernist Literature: Unveiling Literary Experimentation and Cultural Shifts

May 23, 2023 | 0 comments

May 23, 2023 | Essays | 0 comments

From the 1910s up to the 1930s was one of the very interesting times of the literature of the Japanese. These years were the beginning of the modernist movement and replacing the Meiji Restoration resulting in the early maturity of the Showa period. During these times, literary imagination responded more to the transformation of the nation because Japan was going through major industrialization and therefore they expanded more in Asia. In the twentieth century’s early decades, many writers worked more with self-internalization. It was also an exciting period of literary experimentation where different writers put into test Marxist thinking, cosmopolitanism, futurism, utopianism, and the avant-garde in their works of fiction. The majority of the writers who aliased with Angela Yiu, for example, the ones from Three Dimensional Reading just like those of the Shinkankaku-ha followed new methodologies and theories of art in different forms of languages, narrative strategy, and expression.


People Also Read


The first part of the anthropology constitutes four stories that were published between the years 1911-1926. They talk about ways the current author’s pictured interiority as they demonstrate the main boundary between space that is enclosed and open, urban exteriority. The second part however consists of six very short fictions. The urban spaces that are featured in this section contain social criticism. These spaces vary from fantasies that are homemade. In this case, Yiu tries to create the chances of many imaginary crossings where various temporary dimensions come together to bring a deeper reading experience. In part three of this anthropology, it is all about a variety of rich Utopian literature. Stories in this part are situated in an imaginary space which is made in man’s vision of Tanizaki’s aesthetic perfection. The works that are added in this anthropology represents well the time when there was a great test in the relationship between modernism and language (Huffman, 2013). Yiu uses these stories in locating the experimentation of Japanese modernist fiction with the exchange of global by giving the reader a chance to give a response to the transformation of urban. Most readers will see the relevance of this anthropology in understanding modern Japanese literature.

In the Three Dimensional Reading, she curates fourteen short stories that were published between the years 1911 and 1932 whereby the main theme of these stories was conceptual depth discovery. This is because it talks about the response of fictional imagination to Japanese modernism, its temporal, abstract, and spatial modern consciousness representation. The main themes in these stories are modernity and urbanization in Japan. Harry Harootunian states in one of his articles that, “A Walker in the City” is what the course of inflection in japan was with the experiences of modernization found all over the globe and therefore could be accessed as any occasion of the seekers. Yiu expects the same results and introduces these kinds of works to readers who speak in English from the Western and Japanese by using different concepts. With the use of great skills, she puts every author, his innovative and distinctive use of the spaces in urban areas, and how he has contributed to Japanese modernism development with the use of historic and cultural contexts. As much as there are not enough amounts of background and biographical information, the introductions given is very helpful to the reader as it assists in the visualization of the country before modernism. The stories are seen as more three dimensional when they receive compliments from different authors. You portray a visualization of multi-layered internal consciousness which is shown in phantasmal, temporal construction, and modernist spatial.

The main theme in Hell in a Bottle is freedom.it is seen that Keawe’s fingers are clasped on the stalk and he had taken breathe to be a cleaner man than he was. This explains why when he gets home to his room and undresses in front of a glass, he feels whole again on his flesh like a baby. He is confined to various things of the world and he needs freedom. He then feels a strange thing within him and realizes he had never seen a miracle before. For the first time, he realizes he does not care about the Chinese evil and very little about Kokua he feels he is free from all these and when he remembered in this place he was confined as the bottle imp eternally (Yiu, 2013). He needs redemption because if he stays here, he will forever be referred to that. There is the theme of love. Keawe is scared of being alone and as walks among happy faces, he hears a song he had played with Kokua playing, and all over sudden courage returned to him. This encouraged him and made him go back to Hawaii and hoped he would be wedded to Kokua. We are told that when these two were in a place together, Keawe’s heart became still but he befell into horror every time he was alone. Kokua had gone wholly to him and there was a leap of her heart when she saw him.


Huffman, J. L. (2013). Modern Japan: an encyclopedia of history, culture, and nationalism. Routledge.

Yiu, A. (2013). Three-Dimensional Reading: Stories of Time and Space in Japanese Modernist Fiction, 1911-1932. Hell in a Bottle, pp. 240-250. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press.

5/5 - (6 votes)

Need Support in Studies? 📚 – Enjoy 10% OFF on all papers! Use the code "10FALLHELP"