Kan, Kikuchi 1888–1948
Kan, Kikuchi 1888–1948
PERSONAL: Born December 26, 1888, in Kagawa, Japan; died of a heart attack, March 6, 1948, in Tokyo, Japan. Education: Attended Kyoto Imperial University.
CAREER: Playwright, short story writer, and novelist. Founder (under name Hiroshi Kikuchi) of Bungei Shunju (monthly journal), beginning 1923.
Kiseki, 1916, translation by G.W. Shaw published as The Miracle in Tojuro's Love and Four Other Plays, 1925.
Chichi kaeru, 1917, translation by G.W. Shaw published as The Father Returns in Tojuro's Love and Four Other Plays, 1925.
Tojuro no koi, 1919, translation by G.W. Shaw published as Tojuro's Love in Tojuro's Love and Four Other Plays, 1925.
Ojuko no kyojin, 1919, translation by G.W. Shaw published as The Madman on the Roof in Tojuro's Love and Four Other Plays, Hokuseido (Tokyo, Japan), 1925.
Katakiuchi ijo (dramatic version of Onshu no kanata ni), 1920, translation by G.W. Shaw published as Better than Revenge in Tojuro's Love and Four Other Plays, 1925.
Tojuro's Love and Four Other Plays, Hokuseido (Tokyo, Japan), 1925.
Plays also appear in Three Modern Japanese Plays, Steward Kidd Company (Cincinnati, OH), 1923; and Anthology of Japanese Literature, edited by D.L. Keene, Grove Press (New York, NY), 1955.
Kokoro no okoku, 1919.
Ren'aibyo kanja, 1924.
Toki no ujigami, 1924.
Shohai, 1932, translation by K. Nishi published as Victory or Defeat, Kairyudo (Tokyo, Japan), 1934.
(Under name Hiroshi Kikuchi) History and Trends of Modern Japanese Literature, translated by Shigeyoshi Sakabe, Kokusai Bunka Shinkokai (Tokyo, Japan), 1936.
Beyond the Pale of Vengeance, Karinbunko (Kyoto, Japan), 1961.
Also author of other works under name Hiroshi Kikuchi.
ADAPTATIONS: Many of Kikuchi's stories have been adapted as films.
SIDELIGHTS: A popular author of short stories and plays as well as novels, Kikuchi Kan is credited with contributing a clean, clear style to modern Japanese fiction. After studying English literature at Kyoto Imperial University, Kikuchi began a career in publishing, eventually starting his own literary magazine, Bungei Shunju. At the same time, he produced a prolific output of short stories and plays. Kikuchi's first successes came with the 1918 publication of his short story "Mumei sakka no nikki" ("Diary of an Unknown Writer") and the 1920 revival of the play Chichi kaeru, which was originally produced in 1917. A successful theater career ensued, with many of Kikuchi's short stories adapted for the stage as one-act plays; many of these stories were also adapted for film. Later in his career Kikuchi wrote three novels, of which Shohai and Sankatei are considered the most significant. Through his literary magazine, Kikuchi also promoted Japanese writing and established two prestigious literary awards, the Akutagawa and the Naoki prizes. In addition, his magazine served as the forerunner of a large publishing company.
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Theatre Journal, May, 1993, Shawn Rene Graham, "Blood! Love! Madness!," p. 251.