Katō Shūson

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Katō Shūson ( Japanese 加藤 楸 邨 ; born May 26, 1905 in Tokyo ; † July 3, 1993 ), actually Katō Takeo ( 加藤 健雄 ), was a Japanese haiku poet and literary scholar (Japanese literature). His wife was the haiku poet Katō Chiyoko .


Katō Shūson was born in Kitasenzoku , Tokyo , which is now the Kitasenzoku area in the Tokyo district of ta . The registration of the birth was due to the sudden transfer of the father, a railway official, but in the city of Ōtsuki . Since later further transfers followed, Shūson lived in the course of his youth in the regions of Kantō , Tōhoku and Hokuriku of the Japanese main island of Honshū . When the father retired in 1921, the family moved to Kanazawa , the mother's hometown. There Shūson continued the school education he had already started at the First Middle School (today: Kanazawa-Izumigaoka High School).

In 1923 he graduated from middle school and was an assistant teacher at the Matto elementary school for two years. (The city of Mattō , in which the school was located, is now part of Hakusan .) During this time Shūson developed an interest in tanka poetry, especially in the works of Ishikawa Takuboku or those from the so-called Araragi school named after the eponymous magazine for Tanka. In 1925 he lost his father to an illness and then moved with the entire family to Tokyo. In 1926 he attended the Faculty of Japanese Studies and Classical Chinese Literature of the Higher Education School (a forerunner of today's Tsukuba University ).

In 1929 he finished his training there and became a teacher at the Kasukabe Middle School . The same year he married Yano Chiyose , who later became the haiku poet Katō Chiyoko . In 1931, at the suggestion of a fellow teacher, he began to write haiku and published it in the magazine Ashibi, edited by Mizuhara Shūōshi . At the same time he became a student of Shūōshis. In 1935 he was accepted into the circle of Ashibi magazine. In 1937 he gave up teaching at the middle school and again moved to Tokyo with his family. There he began studying at the Faculty of Japanese Studies at the humanities and natural sciences University (which later became the Tsukuba University like the institute previously attended ) and at the same time worked on Shūōshi's recommendation in the publishing house of Ashibi magazine.

He graduated in 1940, became a teacher at Tokyo Eighth Middle School (now Koyamadai High School) and founded the Haiku magazine Kanrai ( 寒 雷 ). He retired from Ashibi magazine in 1942. In 1944 he went to China with other poets like Tsuchiya Bummei and wrote haiku on the scene of the war. He resumed the dormant edition of the magazine Kanrai in August 1946. He came under criticism for his “war poems”, as they cast doubt on a supportive attitude towards the imperial Japanese headquarters. In 1954 he became a professor at the Aoyama Gakuin Junior College of Women ( 青山 学院 女子 短期 大学 , Aoyama-gakuin joshi tanki daigaku ) and stayed there until 1974.

In 1968 his haiku collection Maboroshi no shika was honored with the Dakotsu Prize . In 1986 his wife Chiyose died. In recognition of his research work on Matsuo Bashō , which he had carried out since the middle of the Second World War , he received the medal on the violet ribbon , the Order of the Sacred Treasure third class and the Asahi Prize .

He had to be hospitalized at the beginning of 1993 and died on July 3 of the same year. Katō Shūson was 88 years old.


Haiku collections

  • Kanrai ( 寒 雷 ). 1941.
  • Hotaka ( 穂 高 ). 1940.
  • Setsugo no ten ( 雪 後 の 天 ). 1943.
  • Hi no kioku ( 火 の 記憶 ). 1948.
  • Yakoku ( 野 哭 ). 1948.
  • Kifuku ( 起伏 ). 1949.
  • Sammyaku ( 山脈 ). 1950.
  • Maboroshi no shika ( ま ぼ ろ し の 鹿 ). 1967.
  • Dotō ( 怒濤 ). 1986.


  • Bashō kōza ( 芭蕉 講座 ). 1951.
  • Issa shūku ( 一 茶 秀 句 ). 1964.
  • Bashō zenku ( 芭蕉 全 句 ). 1969.
  • Okunohosomichi ginkon ( 奥 の 細 道 吟 行 ). 1974.
  • Bashō no sanka ( 芭蕉 の 山河 ). 1980.
  • Katō Shūson zenshū ( 加藤 楸 邨 全集 ). 1982.
  • Katō Shūson shoki-hyōron shūsei ( 加藤 楸 邨 初期 評論 集成 ). 1992.