Skip to content


June 14, 2011

Pretty orange flowers 1 | きれいなオレンジ色のお花1

Pretty orange flowers 2 | きれいなオレンジ色のお花2

There have been so many pretty shades of orange popping up around the kibbutz lately.

* * * * *

I came across Haruki Murakami’s acceptance speech at the 2011 International Catalunya Prize ceremony held in Barcelona last Thursday. I’ve only been able to find the full transcript in Japanese (Part 1 and Part 2) but here is an article about it in English. It was a very worthwhile read.

”The accident at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant is the second major nuclear detriment that the Japanese people have experienced,” he said in Japanese. ”However, this time it was not a bomb being dropped upon us, but a mistake committed by our very own hands.”

The Japanese people, having ”learnt through the sacrifice of the ‘hibakusha’ atomic bomb victims just how badly radiation leaves scars on the world and human wellbeing,” should have continued to stand firm in rejecting nuclear power, the novelist, clad in a gray blazer, said.

”Yet, those who questioned (the safety of) nuclear power were marginalized as being ‘unrealistic dreamers’,” while the Japanese government and utility companies put priority on ”efficiency” and ”convenience” and turned the quake-prone nation into the world’s third largest nuclear-powered country, he added.

”We must not be afraid to dream,” Murakami said in concluding his speech. ”Do not be caught up by the evil dogs that carry the names of ‘efficiency’ and ‘convenience.’ Instead, we must be ‘unrealistic dreamers’ who charge forward taking bold steps.”

–From article Novelist Murakami raps Japan’s nuke policy during award speech by The Mainichi Daily News–

While searching for this speech, I learned that Murakami had come to Israel in 2009 to accept the Jerusalem Prize, during which he also gave a very powerful speech (full transcript).






Much love,

5 Comments leave one →
  1. June 17, 2011 11:03 am

    Thanks for posting that. I was just talking about Murakami the other day to a friend about how he’s never been afraid to say negative things about Japan when needed…

    • June 17, 2011 12:45 pm

      You are very welcome! His words rings so true. I wasn’t aware of Murakami speaking out against Japan in the past, but I’ll be keeping my eyes open from now on.

  2. June 17, 2011 2:31 pm

    Just from reading his books in English, really. I always got the impression he doesn’t mind talking about both the negative and positive aspects of Japanese culture…about the war, about the Sarin gas attack, etc.

    • June 18, 2011 12:35 pm

      That Sarin book by him has always been on books I want to read. Now even more so!


  1. 121 « much love, kaori – letters from Israel

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: