The Sokudo Prince and the Stony Cat

In retrospect, Season of the Sun also articulated a cultural style that became an important aesthetic in the post-Occupation culture : the cultural style of speed, deliberate speed, a speed that accompanied “the excitements of electronic speed, (the rush to) face down nuclear anxiety, and incorporate newly aggressive demands and examples from…youth culture. In the novel, Tatsuya rushes away from basketball to take up boxing; the boys and girls fall into bed with each other almost instantly. We learn that Eiko’s former boyfriend died in a car accident on the way to a rendezvous with her : “He had sped along in his car and then crashed into a train“. Tatsuya and Eiko and their age-mates are always on the move, fast in their cars and boats and trains. On Tatsuya’s sailboat, Eiko switches on her portable transistor radio to instantly create a mood, though it turned out to be “a slow dance perfect for lovers“. Even the dynamics of Tatsuya and Eiko’s relationship is described with the term supiido (“he lost his own pace in her speed and intensity“); This love for speed certainly characterizes the postwar period’s modernity.

Ann Sherif, Japan’s Cold War: Media, Literature, and the Law, 2013, p.188

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