Shiba Ryotaro, one
of Japan's most popular authors, was born in Osaka
in 1923.He graduated from Osaka University of
Foreign Studies, where he studied Mongolian and
served in the Imperial Japanese Army during the
World War II, as did many other students.
After the war he worked as a newspaper reporter
and began to write novels, mainly based on Asian
By writing historical novels he embarked on a
lifelong exploration of people and events in Japanese
history, trying to establish how a nation's course
is set. In 1959 he received the Naoki Prize for
『Fukuro no shiro』 (The Owl Castle)and entered
into the group of popular novelists.
His many works, which often provide new interpretations
of the turbulent times of the Meiji Restoration,
have had enduring success with Japanese readers.
He was named a member of the Japan Art Academy
in 1981, cited as a Cultural Merit in 1991, and
conferred with the Order of Culture in1993.
After his sudden death in 1996, to continue his
cultural works, the Shiba Ryotaro Memorial Foundation
was established by his wife, Fukuda Midori. The
foundation set up the Shiba Ryotaro Prize and
Fellowship, and opened the Shiba Ryotaro Museum
『Ryoma ga yuku』 『Sakanoue no kumo』 『Kaidou wo
yuku』 『Kukai no fukei』 『Nanohana no oki』 etc.
『Drunk as a lord』 『The Last shogun』 『Kukai the
Universal』 『To you who live in the 21st century』