8th Manga Division Grand Prize
Town of Evening Calm, Country of Cherry Blossoms
KOUNO Fumiyo [Japan]
The setting is Hiroshima in 1955. This work portrays the reality of the A-bomb and the days thereafter, through the eyes of a woman. It asks what the war and the A-bomb mean to ordinary people.
Reason for Award
This work takes as its subject “Hiroshima”. The manga artist who produced it belongs to the post-war generation and though the story is only 10 pages long, its depiction of “the dark shadow of war” is excellent and clearly draws on experience. This is why this work was highly regarded from the early stages and won this prize ahead of other longer works. The extension of hope from the older generation to the younger is clearly drawn, as are the subtle differences in the values received to those conveyed. I was impressed by the method of expression which, whilst conveying a powerful message, never imposes upon the reader, but rather serves to evoke understanding and acceptance.