Rouse Up O Young Men of the New Age!

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Grove Press, 2003 - Fiction - 259 pages
9 Reviews
Rouse Up O Young Men of the New Age! is a virtuoso novel hailed as "a dark jewel" (The Village Voice) and "a dazzlingly unconventional fiction . . . capable of frequently reducing the reader to helpless (albeit grateful) tears" (Kirkus Reviews). Wise and illuminating, it is a masterpiece from one of the world's finest writers.

K is a famous writer living in Tokyo with his wife and three children, one of whom is mentally disabled. K's wife confronts him with the information that this child, Eeyore, has been doing disturbing things -- behaving aggressively, asserting that he's dead, even brandishing a knife at his mother -- and K, given to retreating from reality into abstraction, looks for answers in his lifelong love of William Blake's poetry. As K struggles to understand his family and assess his responsibilities within it, he must also reevaluate himself -- his relationship with his own father, the political stances he has taken, the duty of artists and writers in society. A remarkable portrait of the inexpressible bond between this father and his damaged son, Rouse Up O Young Men of the New Age! is the work of an unparalleled writer at his sparkling best.

 

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Review: Rouse Up, O Young Men of the New Age!

User Review  - Goodreads

A lot of this book went over my head given I know very little about Japans recent history. I also have no interest in Blake. However I am giving it 4 stars anyway because the description of the ... Read full review

Review: Rouse Up, O Young Men of the New Age!

User Review  - Goodreads

Painfully beautiful and mind-expanding. A lovely thunder-storm that incurs a great deal of damage. Read full review

Contents

Songs of Innocence Songs of Experience
1
A Cold Babe Stands in the Furious Air
27
Down Down thro the Immense with Outcry
61
The Ghost of a Flea
79
The Soul Descends as a Falling Star to the Bone at My Heel
121
Let the Inchained Soul Rise and Look Out
157
Rouse Up O Young Men of the New Age
203
Copyright

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About the author (2003)

Kenzaburo Oe was born on January 31, 1935. He was born in a small village on the island of Shikoku, Japan. A winner of numerous Japanese literary prizes, Oe came to manhood during World War II and the occupation. At Tokyo University, Oe studied Jean-Paul Sartre and absorbed many popular leftist ideas. These influences appear in his early writings, which often deal with contemporary issues. With the birth of his deformed son, father and son became the new focus of his work. In his two books, A Personal Matter (1964) and A Healing Family (1996), Oe describes the pain involved with accepting his brain-damaged son and the small victories involved their lives as his son progressed. In 1994, Oe won the Nobel Prize for Literature.

John Nathan is the author of the definitive biography of the novelist Yukio Mishima & has translated the novels of both Mishima & the Nobel laureate Kenzaburo Oe into English. He is an Emmy Award-winning filmmaker & lives in Santa Barbara, California.

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