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Shūsaku Endō (1923–1996)

Author of Silence

163+ Works 7,753 Members 185 Reviews 31 Favorited

About the Author

Shusaku Endo was born in Tokyo in 1923 and, with his family, converted to Catholicism while he was still a child. Much of his writing centers on the conflict this conversion engendered as he struggled to develop faith in a deity foreign to Japanese culture. His writings also reflect on his show more experiences during World War II during the bombings and the subsequent shortage of basic human necessities for the Japanese people. He explores the suffering endured and the inevitable shock wave upon human relationships and the human psyche. Endo graduated from Keio University and then journeyed to France after the war to continue his studies, but was forced to return to Japan because of illness. After a period of convalescence Endo decided on a writing career, publishing his first novel, Shiroihito, in 1955. His novel The Samurai, published in the United States in 1996, is considered one of his finest works. His novel Silence, was made into a major motion picture and premiered in November 2016. Endo's reputation is due in part to his exploration of moral dilemma as it relates to divergent cultures. Endo has won many literary awards. In 1982 he was elected to the Japan Arts Academy. Shusaku Endo died in 1996. (Bowker Author Biography) show less

Works by Shūsaku Endō

Silence (1966) 3,752 copies
The Samurai (1980) 799 copies
Deep River (1993) 610 copies
A Life of Jesus (1978) 367 copies
Scandal (1986) 350 copies
The Sea and Poison (1957) 330 copies
When I Whistle (1974) 207 copies
Wonderful Fool (1959) 189 copies
Stained Glass Elegies (1959) 175 copies
Volcano (1959) 128 copies
The Girl I Left Behind (1972) 124 copies
Foreign Studies (1989) 122 copies
The Final Martyrs (1985) 109 copies
Five by Endo (2000) 84 copies
The Golden Country (1970) 46 copies
大変だァ 4 copies
Song of Sadness (1977) 4 copies
悲しみの歌 (1981) 4 copies
狐狸庵閑話 4 copies
Douleurs exquises (1991) 4 copies
生き上手死に上手 (1994) 3 copies
決戦の時 下 (1991) 3 copies
女の一生 2部 (1986) 3 copies
影法師 (1974) 3 copies
死について考える (1996) 3 copies
父親 (1989) 3 copies
王の挽歌 下巻 (1996) 3 copies
母なるもの (1975) 3 copies
彼の生きかた (1977) 3 copies
生き上手死に上手 (1991) 3 copies
真昼の悪魔 (1990) 3 copies
火山 3 copies
留学 (新潮文庫) (1968) 3 copies
夫婦の一日 (1997) 3 copies
眠れぬ夜に読む本 (1996) 3 copies
決戦の時 上 (1991) 3 copies
落第坊主の履歴書 (1993) 2 copies
イエス巡礼 (1995) 2 copies
ぐうたら人間学 (1976) 2 copies
春は馬車に乗って (1992) 2 copies
小説身上相談 (1978) 2 copies
哀歌 (1984) 2 copies
ユーモア小説集 (1973) 2 copies
留学 2 copies
楽天大将 2 copies
怪奇小説集 2 copies
わが恋う人は 下 (1990) 2 copies
わが恋う人は 上 (1990) 2 copies
妖女のごとく (1991) 2 copies
満潮の時刻 (2002) 2 copies
悪霊の午後 上 (1986) 2 copies
反逆 下 (1991) 2 copies
反逆 上 (1991) 2 copies
父親 下 (1983) 2 copies
父親 上 (1983) 2 copies
宿敵 下 (1987) 2 copies
宿敵 上 (1987) 2 copies
最後の殉教者 (1984) 2 copies
協奏曲 (1979) 2 copies
王の挽歌 上巻 (1996) 2 copies
一・二・三! (1973) 2 copies
悪霊の午後 下 (1986) 2 copies
Vaikus (2016) 2 copies
私の愛した小説 (1988) 2 copies
万華鏡 (1996) 2 copies
それ行け狐狸庵 (1974) 2 copies
勇気ある言葉 (1977) 2 copies
お茶を飲みながら (1984) 2 copies
سکوت 1 copy
Samuraj 1 copy
Når jeg fløjter (1974) 1 copy
Escândalo 1 copy
沈黙 1 copy
反逆 1 copy
心の砂時計 (1992) 1 copy
Silence c.6 1 copy
大変だァ 1 copy

Associated Works


Common Knowledge



122. Silence by Shusaku Endo in Backlisted Book Club (March 2022)
Group Read, July 2015: Silence in 1001 Books to read before you die (May 2017)
Group read: Silence by Endo? in Catholic Tradition (January 2017)
Scandal by Shusaku Endo in Author Theme Reads (December 2012)
Deep River by Shusaku Endo in Author Theme Reads (December 2012)
When I Whistle by Shusaku Endo. in Author Theme Reads (December 2012)
Five by Endo by Shusaku Endo in Author Theme Reads (December 2012)
The Samurai by Shusaku Endo in Author Theme Reads (September 2012)
A Life of Jesus by Shusaku Endo in Author Theme Reads (August 2012)
[Silence] by [[Shusaku Endo]] in Author Theme Reads (August 2012)
The Sea and Poison by Shusaku Endo in Author Theme Reads (March 2012)
Stained Glass Elegies by Shusaku Endo in Author Theme Reads (January 2012)
Volcano by Shusaku Endo in Author Theme Reads (January 2012)


One of the greatest books ever written. A must read.
Aidan767 | 98 other reviews | Feb 1, 2024 |
Pretty bleak. Sort of 1984, but set in 17th century Japan, and the main character is a Portuguese priest/missionary.
aleshh | 98 other reviews | Jan 12, 2024 |
"Endo's graceful life of Christ ranks with Francois Mauriac as one of the great volumes of its kind written in this century" (Harry James Cargas)

"He knows the land. His descriptions of the Judean countryside and the little towns that dot it, and of the incredibly bleak and empty desert, are among the most real and poetic I have ever read." (The Catholic Review)

"Endo is consummate writer who, as a master photographer, brings intense sentimant, character, and movement out of the subtle light and shadows that he focuses around his subject." (Choice)

" Shusaku Endo is considered one of Japan's greatest modern writers. His novel Silence is acknowleged as a masterpiece and has been translated into many languages. The Final Martyrs, published in English just before his death in 1996, reinforces his reputation as a major literary figure. Endo was born in 1923 and concerted to Christianity as a boy. His stories and novels attempt to integrate his religious faith with Japanese culture." (Publisher, back of book)
… (more)
staylorlib | 3 other reviews | Dec 19, 2023 |
Japanese novelist Endo combines a harsh critique of the emptiness in modern lives with a religious vision of spiritual rebirth. (Publishers Weekly)

"This novel is a fascinating study of cultural truths revealed through a rich and varied cast. Endo, one of Japan's leading writers, skillfully depicts the small details of life, investing them with universal significance. Highly recommended." (Library Journal)
staylorlib | 22 other reviews | Dec 19, 2023 |



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