Scattered-All-Over-the-Earth
2023 Longlist

Scattered All Over The Earth

Translated from the original Japanese by Margaret Mitsutani
artwork-image

ABOUT
THE BOOK

Welcome to the not-too-distant future. Japan, having vanished into the sea, is now remembered as ‘the land of sushi’. Hiruko, a former citizen and a climate refugee herself, has a job teaching immigrant children in Denmark with her invented language Panska (Pan-Scandinavian): ‘homemade language. no country to stay in. three countries I experienced. no time to learn three different languages. might mix up. insufficient space in brain. so made new language. homemade language most Scandinavian people understand’. Hiruko soon makes new friends to join her in her travels searching for anyone who can still speak her mother tongue: Knut, a graduate student in linguistics, who is fascinated by her Panska; Akash, an Indian man who lives as a woman, wearing a red sari; Nanook, an Eskimo from Greenland, first mistaken as another refugee from the land of sushi; and Nora, who works at the Karl Marx House in Trier. All these characters take turns narrating chapters, which feature an umami cooking competition; a dead whale; an ultra-nationalist named Breivik; Kakuzo robots; uranium; and an Andalusian bull fight. Episodic, vividly imagined and mesmerising, Scattered All Over the Earth is another sui generis masterwork by Yoko Tawada.

 

 

 

 

 

ABOUT
THE AUTHOR Yoko
Tawada

Yoko Tawada was born in Tokyo in 1960, moved to Hamburg when she was twenty-two, and then to Berlin in 2006. She writes in both Japanese and German and has received the Akutagawa, Lessing, Kleist, Noma, Adelbert von Chamisso and Tanizaki prizes as well as the Goethe Medal. In 2018, her novel The Emissary won the National Book Award.

Yoko Tawada was born in Tokyo in 1960, moved to Hamburg when she was twenty-two, and then to Berlin in 2006. She writes in both Japanese and German and has received the Akutagawa, Lessing, Kleist, Noma, Adelbert von Chamisso and Tanizaki prizes as well as the Goethe Medal. In 2018, her novel The Emissary won the National Book Award.

ABOUT
THE TRANSLATOR Margaret
Mitsutani

Margaret Mitsutani is a translator of Yoko Tawada and Kenzaburo Oe (Japan’s 1994 Nobel Prize laureate).

Margaret Mitsutani is a translator of Yoko Tawada and Kenzaburo Oe (Japan’s 1994 Nobel Prize laureate).

NOMINATING LIBRARY COMMENTS

In a not too distant future, Japan has disappeared from the face o the earth due to an environmental catastrophe. In Yoko Tawada’s latest novel, we follow Hiruko, a climate refugee on her trip through Europe searching for someone else who speaks her mother tongue. Others join her and the small group is traveling from one bizarre and thoroughly comical situation to the next. It is fascinating how Tawada manages to combine the themes of our time in this first part of a planned trilogy: climate change, migration, globalization – and above all the key question: What does language mean for identity and human community? – Zentral und Landesbibliothek, Berlin, Germany

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Date published
26/04/2018
Country
Japan
Original Language
Japanese
Author
Translator
Margaret Mitsutani
Translation
Translated from the original Japanese by Margaret Mitsutani

RELATED FEATURES

Video May 8 2024

Alexis Wright – Praiseworthy Q&A

Q&A with Alexis Wright, one of the six shortlisted authors for the 2024 Dublin Literary Award in which she discusses her passion for libraries and explores the influences behind her novel Praiseworthy
Video May 8 2024

Mircea Cărtărescu – Solenoid Q&A

Q&A with Mircea Cărtărescu, one of the six shortlisted authors for the 2024 Dublin Literary Award for his novel Solenoid
Video May 8 2024

Emma Donoghue – Haven Q&A

Q&A with Emma Donoghue, one of the six shortlisted authors for the 2024 Dublin Literary Award for her novel Haven
Video May 8 2024

Suzette Mayr – The Sleeping Car Porter Q&A

Q&A with Suzette Mayr, one of the six shortlisted authors for the 2024 Dublin Literary Award for her novel The Sleeping Car Porter

STAY CONNECTED

Stay in touch and sign up to our newsletter to receive all the latest news and updates on the Dublin Literary Award.