News Release

3rd Onkyo Braille Essay Contest. \Japanese Section


¡Winning Essays

The Otsuki Prize for First Place: 200,000 yen prize money and a user-friendly Onkyo stereo system
gLife Has Soundh@Mr. Minoru Furukawa (64), Osaka Prefecture
Runner-up:@100,000 yen prize money and a user-friendly Onkyo stereo system
gThe Remarkable Advance of Braille Booksh@Ms. Nobuko Iwamoto (63), Kyoto Prefecture
Highly Commended (3 essays):@30,000 yen prize money and 20,000 yen in CD gift certificates
gThe Chorush Ms. Kayoko Sasaki (48), Chiba Prefecture
gLooking Forward to the Shining Eyesh@Mr. Takahiro Sakamoto (54), Kumamoto Prefecture
gThoughts While Walkingh@Mr. Akio Miya (60), Tokyo Prefecture
Special Award (1 essay):@A user-friendly Onkyo stereo system
gFlute for the First Timeh@ Ms. Hiroe Kihara (14), Fukui Prefecture

Please click on the title to view the essay.

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Judging Committee

Judgefs Comments: gIndividual Self-Imagesh
Mr. Giichi Fujimoto, Writer



“¡–{‹`ˆêŽ
All the essays that passed the preliminary round were equally excellent. This is because all the applicants expressed their emotions based on individual experiences. The way in which each writerfs life was illuminated by Braille depended on his or her environment, gender, age and occupation.

The highest award this year went to gLife Has Soundh by Mr. Minoru Furukawa. When Mr. Furukawa was thirteen, the light was taken from his life in an instant. He was a movie fan who had been wholeheartedly looking forward to seeing the movie, Shane. Then, for him, a curtain was pulled in front of the screen.

I myself saw Shane when I was a student and was deeply moved by the sadness of the last scene. I felt Mr. Furukawa and the boy in the movie had something in common.

\Shane, come back!

I recall the last words by the boy. Mr. Furukawa epitomizes this moviefs representative audience. I felt that, though he has never actually seen the movie, he has in a sense seen it better than anyone else. He listened to the theme song, and, with his unique sensibility, conjured wonderful images of a trumpet in yellow, a flute in silver, and a pianofs high tones glittering like dew. The devotion of his wife and his interaction with his daughter shined through in this short essay as well. It clearly depicted a strong family scene \one that is slowly becoming lost in Japan.

Ms. Nobuko Iwamoto, who won the runner-up award with gThe Remarkable Advance of Braille Books,h overwhelmed me with her enthusiasm to finish in three days the Braille books of two Akutagawa Literary Award writers. It was refreshing to see her family reading the same stories and exchanging opinions after seeing her trials with Braille. I felt that Ms. Iwamoto, like Mr. Furukawa, was portraying the right kind of family image that modern-day Japan has been losing sight of.

gThe Chorush by Ms. Kayoko Sasaki, chosen for a Highly Commended award, had an excellent expressive quality. The tempo and rhythm perfectly matched the construction of the piece. I found it both pleasing and amusing that she expressed the ups and downs of the essay so skillfully.

Mr. Akio Miyafs gThoughts While Walkingh was the polar opposite of Ms. Sasakifs essay. It conveyed the suffering of navigating onefs life with a white cane, but, reading between the lines, I understood that his confidence and pride surpassed the suffering. I sensed, and was deeply impressed by, his strong spirit.

Mr. Takahiro Sakamoto, in his gLooking Forward to the Shining Eyes,h expresses infinite kindness. I was amazed at the mental shift that helped him gradually identify with innocent children.

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