Confessions of a Mask

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New Directions, 1958 - Fiction - 255 pages
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The novel that made Yukio Mishima famous: a young man confronts his sexuality in WWII Japan.
     Confessions of a Mask tells the story of Kochan, an adolescent boy tormented by his burgeoning attraction to men: he wants to be "normal."  Kochan is meek-bodied, and unable to participate in the more athletic activities of his classmates. He begins to notice his growing attraction to some of the boys in his class, particularly the pubescent body of his friend Omi. To hide his homosexuality, he courts a woman, Sonoko, but this exacerbates his feelings for men. As news of the War reaches Tokyo, Kochan considers the fate of Japan and his place within its deeply rooted propriety.
     Confessions of a Mask reflects Mishima's own coming of age in post-war Japan. Its publication in English--praised by Gore Vidal, James Baldwin, and Christopher Isherwood-- propelled the young Yukio Mishima to international fame.

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About the author (1958)

YUKIO MISHIMA completed his first novel the year he entered the University of Tokyo and his last novel the day of his death on November 25, 1970. He is the author of numerous novels, stories, plays, and essays, and he even directed one film, Patriotism. Mishima was a strict disciplinarian and undertook a rigid bodybuilding and martial arts regime.  At the height of his fame and vitality, he committed suicide by ceremonial seppuku after a failed coup d'etat.  He was forty-five.

MEREDITH WEATHERBY was an American publisher of Japanese texts.

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