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Haruo Sato


  • Biography
1882-1964. Poet and writer. Sato withdrew from Keio University. He studied under Choko Ikuta and Hiroshi Yosano and published his poems in Subaru and Mita Bungaku magazines. He hit the limelight with his novel Den’en no Yuutsu (Melancholy in the Countryside) in 1918, and his book of poems Junjo Shishu (Collection of Sentimental Verses) in 1921. He is also known to have served as a member of the screening committee of the Akutagawa Awards from its first presentation in 1960. He became a leading figure of the literary world in his later years and was reputed to have taught 3,000 students.

  • Association with Minato City
Free-spirited school days in Mita

He enrolled in the preparatory course at Keio University in 1910 with the poet Daigaku Horiguchi, whom he met through the literary group Shinshisha, led by the poet Hiroshi Yosano. There were only three students in his class, Sato, Horiguchi, and himself. The professors of the Faculty of Literature included Kafu Nagai, and senior students included the writer Takitaro Minakami, and the playwright Mantaro Kubota. Although Sato published poems one after another in Mita Bungaku, he advanced only a year after studying at Keio for five years and eight months because he was so absorbed by his creative activities and socializing.

In his autobiography, he writes this in looking back on the days he spent with his school friends: “It was our regular routine to leave Shiba Park and go to a cafe in the Ginza called Paulista via the Shimbashi Station waiting room.” He also writes about Shiba Park back in those days: “It is very much a park that is tranquil and atmospheric, and the wisterias along the pond that used to be west of the present Tokyo Tower were truly beautiful. We sat under them losing our sense of time.” After withdrawing from school, he published novels based on his unique sense of aesthetics, such as Spain Inu no ie (The Spanish House of Dogs) and Utsukushiki Machi (Beautiful Town), and became the darling of the literary world in his 20s.

References
Nihon Jinmei Diajiten (Japanese Biographical Dictionary) (Kodansha)
Sakka no rinju - Bohi Jiten (Writer’s Last Hours - Tombstone Encyclopedia) (Edited by Hiroshi Iwai / Tokyodo Shuppan)
Sakka no jiden 12: Haruo Sato (Writer’s Autobiography 12: Haruo Sato) (Nihon Tosho Center)

  • Literary Works
Denen no Yuutsu (Melancholy in the Countryside) (Iwanami Bunko)
Utsukushiki machi - Spain Inu no Ie (Beautiful Town - Spanish House of Dogs) (Iwanami Bunko)
Shosetsu Chiekosho (Novel: Chieko) (Kadokawa Bunko)
Masako Mandara (Kodansha Bungei Buko)
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  • Related Publications
Shincho Nihon Bungaku Album: Sato Haruo (Shincho Japanese Literary Album: Haruo Sato) (Shinchosha)
Bunjin Boshoku (Writer’s Gluttony) (Mitsuzaburo Arashiyama / Magazine House)
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