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Ryōtarō Shiba (司馬 遼太郎)born Teiichi Fukuda (福田 定一 Fukuda Teiichi?, August 7, 1923 – February 12, 1996) in Osaka, Japan, was a Japanese author best known for his novels about historical events in Japan and on the Northeast Asian sub-continent, as well as his historical and cultural essays pertaining to Japan and its relationship to the rest of the world.

Shiba studied Mongolian at the Osaka School of Foreign Languages (now the School of Foreign Studies at Osaka University) and began his career as a journalist with the Sankei Shimbun, one of Japan's major newspapers. After World War II Shiba began writing historical novels. The magazine Shukan Asahi printed Shiba's articles about his travels within Japan in a series that ran for 1,146 installments. Shiba received the Naoki Prize for the 1959 novel Fukuro no Shiro ("The Castle of an Owl"). In 1993 Shiba received the Government's Order of Cultural Merit. Shiba was a prolific author who frequently wrote about the dramatic change Japan went through during the late Edo and early Meiji periods. His most monumental works include Kunitori Monogatari (国盗り物語), Ryoma ga Yuku (竜馬がゆく; see below), Moeyo Ken, and Saka no ue no kumo (坂の上の雲), all of which have spawned dramatizations, most notably Taiga dramas aired in hour-long segments over a full year on NHK television. He also wrote numerous essays that were published in collections, one of which—Kaidō wo Yuku—is a multi-volume journal-like work covering his travels across Japan and around the world. Shiba is widely appreciated for the originality of his analyses of historical events, and many people in Japan have read at least one of his works.

Several of Shiba's works have been translated into English, including his fictionalized biographies of Kukai (Kukai the Universal: Scenes from His Life, 2003) and Tokugawa Yoshinobu (The Last Shogun: The Life of Tokugawa Yoshinobu, 2004), as well as The Tatar Whirlwind: A Novel of Seventeenth-Century East Asia (2007).

(from Wikipedia)

Alternative Names:

Fukuda, Teiichi
Ryotaro, Shiba
Shiba, Ryoutarou
Ryoutarou, Shiba
Sima, Liaotailang
Shiba, Rëotaro
????, ???????
司馬, 遼太郎

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