Spiritualism and modernism in the work of Kawabata Yasunari

Nihei Masato, Joshua Solomon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Kawabata Yasunari held a deep interest in the study of spiritualism from his very youth. He demonstrates his knowledge of the field in his writing in a variety of ways, particularly in the short stories he published during the prewar period. Thus far, scholarship has considered Kawabata's relationship with spiritualism primarily in terms of his biography: there has yet to be a satisfactorily rigorous study taking into account historical context and his use of spiritualism as novelistic technique. This article analyzes Kawabata and spiritualism with respect to modernism by looking at the short stories ‘The Full White Moon’, ‘Requiem’, and ‘Lyric Poem’. This analysis will also help illuminate the diversity of Kawabata's approaches to modernism.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)69-84
Number of pages16
JournalJapan Forum
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Jan 2


  • Japanese literature
  • Kawabata Yasunari
  • modernism
  • spiritualism


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