Ishimure Michiko, Writer of Minamata Disease Books, Dies at 90 (News)
Tokyo, Feb. 10 (Jiji Press)—Ishimure Michiko, a prominent Japanese author known for her books about Minamata mercury poisoning disease, died of acute exacerbation of Parkinson's disease at a care facility in the southwestern Japan city of Kumamoto on Saturday. She was 90.
Born in Amakusa in Kumamoto Prefecture, Ishimure soon moved to Minamata in the same prefecture.
While supporting patients of Minamata disease, a neurological disorder, she published in 1969 Kugai jōdo, which is translated as Paradise in the Sea of Sorrow.
In the work, she depicted sufferings and dignity of Minamata disease patients, contributing to raising public awareness about the pollution-caused disease.
For her series of writings about the disease, Ishimure won the Ramon Magsaysay Award, known as Asia's Nobel Prize, which was established in 1957 in the honor of former Philippine President Ramon Magsaysay.[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]