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27 JANUARY 2004

Woman of the Dunes (Suna No Onna)

"Junpei Niki is an amateur entomologist. He aspires to discover a new kind of insect, and takes a weekend trip to the dunes to look for insects. He finds a village there, where villagers live in deep sand pits. He decides to stay at a widow's house in a pit just for a night. He learns that in this village in the dunes, residents must shovel the sand almost continuously to prevent the house from being buried in sand. The next day he realises that none of the villagers are coming back to pick him up. He makes several attempts to escape from the pit, and tries to force his excape through taking the woman hostage. No one in the village, however, cares Junpei's action since he is in danger himself unless he and the woman shovel the sand. Still dreaming of escape, Junpei gradually starts to feel comfortable and accepts his fate. While Junpei shovels with the woman, villagers deliver newspapers, a little alcohol and tabacco. The woman sleeps naked under the sand that continuously falls on her white skin, which is a scene Junpei likes to watch. The woman is almost idiotic and plain, but innocently aspires to buy a radio when her nightly work brings enough money. ... At the school where Junpei used to work, people decide to report his missing to the police, but they soon give up and forget him."
(Kumiko Sato)

Originally posted on the Whitney Museum Portal at:
http://www.personal.psu.edu/kxs334/academic/fiction/abe_suna.html (this link is now dead)

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TAGS

1964beachblack and white • enclose • entomologist • entomologyfreedom • Hiroshi Teshigahara • Japanese filmprisonersandspecimen • Suna no Onna • trapped • Woman in the Dunes • Woman of the Dunes (1964)
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