During and After the World Wars: L. M. Montgomery and the Canadian Missionary Connection in Japan

  • Yoshiko Akamatsu Notre Dame Seishin University


It was a Canadian missionary in Japan, Loretta Leonard Shaw, who introduced Anne of Green Gables to its first Japanese translator, Hanako Muraoka, as a token of friendship when she left Japan before World War Two. Muraoka then devoted herself to translating it into Japanese as bombs rained down upon Tokyo. She was educated at Toyo Eiwa Mission School for Girls in Tokyo which was founded by Canadian Methodists. This paper will consider the Canadian missionary connection in Japan during and after the World Wars and examine the influence that they had on Muraoka and her translation of Montgomery's classic novel.

Author Biography

Yoshiko Akamatsu, Notre Dame Seishin University
Yoshiko Akamatsu, PhD, is a professor of literature at Notre Dame Seishin University in Okayama, Japan.  She translated Montgomery’s posthumous collection of short stories Akin to Anne: Tales of Other Orphans in 1988-89. In 1999, her article “Japanese Readings of Anne of Green Gables” was published in L. M. Montgomery and Canadian Culture, and in 2013, “The Continuous Popularity of Red-Haired Anne in Japan” appeared in Anne around the World.
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