Itō Seikō’s mourning voice(s)

  • Veronica De Pieri (Autor/in)
    University of Bologna

    Veronica De Pieri is currently a Junior Research Fellow at Alma Mater Studiorum University of Bologna on female journalism related to collective trauma and catastrophe on a big scale. She is a former Ph.D in Japanese studies at Ca' Foscari University of Venice. Her interests have been focusing on testimonial narrative, trauma studies and the ethics of memory since 2011, with a comparative literature perspective (Shoah literature, atomic bombing literature, 3.11 literature). De Pieri has been collaborating with Kyoto University for the translation of atomic bomb testimonies (NET-GTAS) for the Hiroshima and Peace Museum since 2013. She is currently a translator for atomic bombing and Fukushima literary testimonies.

Identifier (Artikel)


Two years after the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami or 3.11 as it is more commonly known, Japanese author Itō Seikō いとうせいこう achieved a resounding success with his novel Sōzō Rajio 想像ラジオ, an atypical story of a radio program whose main protagonists are the deceased. Ten years later, on the occasion of the tenth anniversary of the disaster, the nonfictional work entitled Fukushima monorōgu 福島モノローグ makes its appearance on the bookshelves. This late publication brings back the voices of the 3.11 survivors in a specular fashion in comparison with the previous work and elicits the misleading juxtaposition of fiction and death, and non-fiction and life.

This study explores the representational power of Itō’s literature when it comes to mourning death and loss in the wake of the 3.11 disaster. By applying a psychological reading of his works, the article pursues the main objective, which is to investigate the role of literature in dealing with psychological trauma and examine how trauma is represented, thus emphasizing the value attributed by the writer to the victim’s mourning voices.




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ITŌ, Seikō いとうせいこう (2021): Fukushima monorōgu [Fukushima monologue] 福島モノローグ. Tōkyō: Kawaden shobō shisha.

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Akademisches Fachgebiet und Untergebiete
Japanese Studies, Japanische Literatur
Sōzō Rajio , Fukushima monorōgu , psychological trauma , mourning, Itō Seikō, 3.11, Fukushima