The Cocktail Party, a play by Oshiro Tatsuhiro

From left to right: Mr. Ryan Buyco (MA Asian studies student), Mr. Tatsuhiro Oshiro (Guest of honor and winner of the Akutagawa Prize in literature), and Professor Robert Huey (Director of Center for Japanese Studies) at a reception preceding The Cocktail Party, which was organized by the Center for Okinawan Studies

On October 27th, UH Manoa’s Center for Okinawan Studies coordinated and presented, The Cocktail Party, a play by Mr. Tatsuhiro Oshiro at the Orvis Auditorium on the UH-Manoa campus.  Originally published as a novella in 1967, The Cocktail Party is the first Okinawan literary work to win Japan’s most prestigious literary honor, the Akutagawa prize.

Mr. Oshiro (depicted above) is considered to be the founder of modern Okinawan literature. He has a distinguished writing career of six decades and has written fiction, drama, essays, and other writings on Okinawan culture and history.

In his play adaptation of The Cocktail Party, the plot centers on Mr. Uehara, an Okinawan, who visits his daughter in Washington DC in 1995.  As Mr. Uehara reminisces with his daughter about the past–along with her husband, an American, they bring up many important social and cultural issues which has shaped and still shapes the world’s relationship with Okinawa, which makes the drama especially relevant today.

Please visit these websites for more information regarding The Cocktail Party, Okinawan culture, and/or Okinawan literature: The Cocktail Party ProgramCenter for Okinawan Studies, Voices of the Okinawan Spirit, Manoa Journal


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