Asian studies in Lithuania
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Strange Tales from Liaozhai

Authors: Pu Songling
Translated by: Survilaitė, Ona
Translated from: Russian
Published on: 1987

‘Strange Tales from Liaozhai’ is a collection of novels written by Chinese writer Pu Songling. In this book author, who had chosen Liaozhai pseudonym, portrays China in 17th–18th centuries, the same that he had lived in. By using his unique literary skills Pu Songling narrates the most unexpected stories, which supposedly really happened in Shandong province, where Pu Songling had been living, or just retell stories, that he had heard from other people. These tales describe mythical creatures and magic in human world as well as other fantasy elements. More

Moteris smėlynuose (The Woman in the Dunes)

Authors: Abe, Kōbō
Translated by: Lenkauskienė, Dalia

One of the premier Japanese novels of the twentieth century, “The Women in the Dunes” combines the essence of myth, suspense, and the existential novel. In a remote seaside village, Niki Jumpei, a teacher and amateur entomologist, is held captive with a young woman at the bottom of a vast sand pit where, Sisyphus-like, they are pressed into shoveling off the ever-advancing sand dunes that threaten the village.

The Containers of Death

Authors: Morimura, Seiichi
Translated by: Nekrašius, Stanislovas
Translated from: Russian
Published on: 1986

This novel is about Japanese journalist named Hiran. Hiran worked in nothing special Japanese newspaper „Sagami Shimpo“. Containers of Death and Hiran story began very early in the book, (at his childhood) and ended in the end of the book. In the beginning there are three, the most important things: Hiran and girl named Mari first meeting, the „accident“ and meeting with the same girl after 20 years. These three events were the most important thing in this whole story, because they were in charge of beginning and continuation. Author knew exactly what he wanted from this book, so he decided to lead Hiran through the whole story to Mari without his own knowledge. More

August without Emperor

Authors: Kobayashi, Kyuzo
Translated by: Skuodžiūnienė, Danutė
Translated from: Russian
Published on: 1984

In “The August without Emperor” is a political detective story, the author is using facts from 1961 “self-defense forces” attempt to overthrow the Japanese government. He’s writing very cleverly about the main mechanics of this rebellion. The book talks about Japanese militarism concept, the corruption of politics, secret contacts with big company monopolies and fascist organizations. Also, the author is trying to show us the unofficial censorship of the press and governments trials to … More

The Sound of the Mountain

Authors: Kawabata, Yasunari
Translated by: Mickienė, Aldona
Translated from: Russian
Published on: 1983

The beginning of the story takes us to the 62nd summer of Shingo Ogata. The main character Shingo Ogata with his family (wife Yasuka, son Shuichi, daughter in law Kikuka) lives in the city of Kamakura.  And even though this family seems happy it is only a temporary illusion. Soon we find out that Shuichi is cheating on his wife Kikuka and Shingo has already begun to experience temporary lapses of memory.  The depressing memories and disturbing dreams can‘t seem to leave the aging hero alone. And when Shingo finally starts to get used to his vivid dreams one night he is woken up and hears the sound of the mountain. Which he later on takes as an omen of his impending death. Not long after the incident, Shingo’s married daughter Fusaka comes back barging in into his life. By only carrying and old Furoshike and her daughters she is here to stay. Shingo realizes that his past actions are to be blamed, and perceives the difficulties of his adult children to be the fruit of his poor parenting. And even though he‘s struggling to bring happiness to his family, he can never forget the face of Yasuka’s dead sister whom he still loves truly. More

Five women who loved love

Authors: Ihara Saikaku
Translated by: Ferensienė, Goda
Translated from: Russian
Published on: 1983

This book is composed of four sets of short stories. They depict Edo period in Japan and its residents of different castes and professions. These are real stories of the seventeenth century Japanese daily life, about the pleasures of love, life’s comicality and dangers of passion, Japanese traditions, castes’ and genders’ relations. The characters of Saikaku’s works transcend the laws of society and religion, and for that are punished or killed.  Author\’s ideal – a frugal, prudent trader, an industrious craftsman, a good father and son, a faithful wife and a dedicated daughter. However, he sympathizes with those whose deeds and feelings do not meet the rules of life, shows the tragedy of their lives. More

Madame Pearl

Authors: Kikuchi, Kan
Translated by: Viršulis, Antanas
Translated from: Russian
Published on: 1982

XIX century Japan rapidly developed capitalist industry and for a part from aristocracy, who didn‘t want to because poor, had to adapt to the newly emerging class – the bourgeoisie. That atmosphere is showed and in Kan Kikuchi novel “Madame Pearl“.

The novel tells the story how one of the main characters, Acumi Shinjitaru is traveling to Yagawara to his wife, accidentally becomes a fellow-traveller to Aoki Dziun, a young student who is hurt by  a loved woman, and he cannot find peace, decides to go away from Tokyo. But during their travel to Yagawara, a disaster occurs, More

Song about Seagulls

Authors: Inui, Tomiko
Translated by: Žemaitytė, Petrė
Translated from: Russian
Published on: 1982

The story of this book takes place in Kabushima island, Aomori prefecture. To this island, which is always full of herring and other fish, each year thousands of seagulls return to breed. In these places seagulls have long been considered sacred birds – messengers of the fish god. On this island temple of the fish god stands. Also, seagulls reserve was established.


The Cloud Dream of the Nine

Authors: Kim Manjun
Translated by: Montvilienė, Dalia
Translated from: Russian
Published on: 1977

“The Cloud Dream of the Nine” is a novel by the famous Korean writer Kim Man Jung. It is a love and life story of 8 fairies and the monk. They have broken the rules and were thrown away from heaven and sent to the diferent parts of Earth. Later they realated their destinies together. Fairies became beautiful girls and tempted the young man Yo Su (the ex monk). They also became wives and concubines of So Yu. What is more, the youngman married the daughter of the emperor. So Yu turned into the minister, grown as a respectful person. After returning to the teacher, So Yu and fairies sit down and started to learn the Buddha. More

Tough hangover

Authors: Kaiko, Takeshi
Translated by: Paraščiakas, Antanas
Translated from: Russian
Published on: 1977

A novel „Tough hangover“ by Takeshi Kaiko analizes Japanese state by the end of World War II. In the book, it tries to unveil Japanese nations spiritual shock after its capitulation and militaristic rezimes downfall. It shows arisen doubts about long lasting cultural traditions and future path choises of Japanese during those years. The author expresses its state through the main novels character. That is why it is possible to compare young boys doubts, distractions and experience with mid … More

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Initiators of the project: Japan foundation VDU