Tanizaki Jun'ichiro Prize

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Tanizaki Jun'ichiro Prize

A prize established in 1965 by the venerable publisher Chuo Koron-sha (now renamed Chuo Koron Shinsha) to commemorate its 80th anniversary. The award was named for the writer Jun'ichiro Tanizaki (18861965), who had long-standing ties to Chuo Koron, including its publication of his Complete Works and his modern Japanese translation of The Tale of Genji.

The annual prize seeks to honor "an outstanding work of fiction or drama that is representative of the age," with the tremendous genre-crossing breadth of Tanizaki's oeuvre cited as the benchmark for its intended scope. In practice it is usually awarded to a novel-length work of literary fiction, with only an occasional nod to the entertainment end of the literary spectrum. The prize has a record of picking titles that go on to be regarded as among the authors' most important works, such as Nobuo Kojima's Embracing Family (tr. 2005) and Kenzaburo Oe's The Silent Cry (tr. 1974). For a number of years in the 1990s, the prize committee included Donald Keene, the great western scholar of Japanese literature. The prizewinner is announced in late August.