Making Xavier’s Dream Real
Vernacular Writings of Catholic Missionaries in Modern Japan
Future Titles / History
Published by JPIC | Hardcover | ISBN 978-4-86658-134-7 | *** pages | 210mm (h) x 148mm (w) | March 2020
※Information for this title is still tentative and subject to change prior to publication
About the Book
This book reveals how St. Francis Xavier’s (1506–1552) dream of evangelizing Japan has been realized by four Catholic missionaries: Aimé Villion (1843–1932), Sauveur Candau (1897–1955), Hermann Heuvers (1890–1977), and Georges Neyrand (1920–2011). All of them lived in Japan until death, and wrote and published widely in Japanese for the populace. Their writings are testimony to their endeavors in learning the language, understanding the people, and enriching Japanese culture via Christianity.
This book re-examines Xavier’s proficiency in Japanese, investigates his influence on missionaries who followed his footsteps to Japan, and explores modern missionaries’ observations of Japan from their insider-outsider perspectives. Their works have fascinated millions of Japanese because of their insightful interpretations of Japan as well as enlightening advice.
The literature penned by these missionaries not only enhances our understanding of the five-centuries-long dialogue between Europe and Japan, but also enables us to recognize and appreciate the extremely important role that Christianity has played in shaping today’s Japanese culture. By analyzing as well as providing historical background for their literary output, this book makes an important contribution to the newly developing research field of “Vernacular Writings by Christian Missionaries in Japan.”
About the Author
Professor Nanyan Guo (PhD) teaches at the Center for the Development of Global Leadership Education at the University of Tokyo. Born in Shanghai, she received both her MA and PhD degrees from Ochanomizu University (Tokyo), and taught for fifteen years at the University of Otago in New Zealand before returning to Japan to conduct research at the International Research Center for Japanese Studies. (Kyoto) for ten years. She is a member of the Academy of Europe. Her research focues on modern Japanese literature, Christianity in Japanese culture, and vernacular writings of Christian missionaries in East Asia. Her monographs include Zabieru no yume o tsumug: Kindai senkyōshi-tachi no Nihongo bungaku (Heibonsha, 2018), Shiga Naoya de sekai bungaku o yomitoku (Sakuhinsha, 2016), and Refining Nature in Modern Japnanese Literature: The Life and Art of Shiga Naoya (Lexington Books, 2014). Among her recent edited volumes are Do Ro hanga no tabi: Yōroppa kara Shanhai ~ Nagasaki eno tabunkateki yūgō (Sōjusha Bijutsu Shuppan, 2019) and Kirishitan ga hiraita Nihongo bungaku: Tagengo tabunka kōryū no engen (Akashi Shoten, 2017).
Original Japanese Edition / 原書情報
郭 南燕 (著)