Yuasa Yoshiko

Yuasa Yoshiko

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Yuasa Yoshiko

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was a Russian language scholar and translator of Russian literature in Shōwa period Japan.


Born in Kyoto, Yuasa was an early supporter of the feminist movement in late Taishō and early Shōwa period Japan. Moving to Tokyo, she was also drawn to leftist political movements and became involved with leading female proletarian literature movement novelist Nakajo Yuriko. In 1924, after Nakajo divorced her husband, the two women began to live together, and from 1927–1930, traveled together to the Soviet Union, where they studied the Russian language and Russian literature and developed a friendship with noted movie director Sergei Eisenstein.

Evidence suggests that the relationship between Yuasa and Nakajo was a romantic if not sexual one. While Yuasa has also been romantically linked to writer Tamura Toshiko among others, Nakajo is said to have been the love of her life. Yuasa was never again romantically linked to another woman after Nakajo's marriage to proletarian author and Japan Communist Party leader Miyamoto Kenji, though in an interview late in life Yuasa said that the word "lesbian" (rezubian/レズビアン) applied to her.An account of their relationship can be found in 沢部ひとみ 『百合子、ダスヴィダーニヤ—湯浅芳子の青春』、東京:女性文庫・学陽書房、 1990. (Sawabe Hitomi, Yuriko, dasuvidāniya: Yuasa Yoshiko no seishun (Yuriko, do svidanya: Yuasa Yoshiko's youth), Tokyo: Josei bunko /...
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