Translated by William Johnston
With a Foreword by Martin Scorsese
“Silence I regard as a masterpiece, a lucid and elegant drama.”—The New York Review of Books
Seventeenth-century Japan: Two Portuguese Jesuit priests travel to a country hostile to their religion, where feudal lords force the faithful to publicly renounce their beliefs. Eventually captured and forced to watch their Japanese Christian brothers lay down their lives for their faith, the priests bear witness to unimaginable cruelties that test their own beliefs. Shūsaku Endō is one of the most celebrated and well-known Japanese fiction writers of the twentieth century, and Silence, a classic novel of enduring faith in dangerous times, is widely considered to be his great masterpiece.
Shūsaku Endō, born in Tokyo in 1923, was raised by his mother and an aunt in Kobe where he converted to Roman Catholicism at the age of eleven. Before his death in 1996, Endō was the recipient of a number of outstanding Japanese literary awards: the Akutagawa Prize, Mainichi Cultural Prize, Shincho Prize, and the Tanizaki Prize, and was widely considered the greatest Japanese novelist of his time.
Silence has been adopted for First-Year Experience programs at:
Loyola Marymount University (CA); Wheaton College (IL)