Toshiko Tamura (Tamura Toshiko) was the pseudonym of early modern feminist novelist, Toshi Satō (Satō Toshi).
Born in the Asakusa district of Tokyo, Tamura enrolled in the faculty of literature at Japan Women’s University at the age of seventeen. However, due to health issues she was forced to withdraw after one term. Despite no formal training, she began her writing career as a disciple of Kōda Rohan and later Okamoto Kido. Most notably, her debut novel Akirame (Resignation) won the Osaka Asahi Shimbun literary prize in 1911. She became a best-selling writer, and contributed numerous works to such mainstream literary magazines as Chūō Kōrōn and Shincho. Tamura’s work during the Shōwa period incorporated issues of gender, class, and modernization.
Toshiko Tamura left Japan in 1918, to follow her lover, Asahi Shimbun journalist Suzuki Etsu, to Vancouver, Canada. She lived there for 8 years before returning to Japan in 1936,
In 1942, she moved to Shanghai, then under Japanese occupation, where she became a journalist and editor. She died of a brain hemorrhage in Shanghai in 1945. After her death, her royalties were used to establish a literary prize for women writers called the Toshiko Tamura Prize.
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