Tuesday, March 15, 2011

For Japan

Yesterday's Der Spiegel announced "Das Ende des Atomzeitalters," the end of the atomic age. The death of Aikichi Kuboyama, a crew member of the Japanese fishing boat Lucky Dragon, in 1954 marked what Gunther Anders called "das erste Fernopfer des Atomzeitalters," the first distant victim of that atomic age. Kuboyama's death was a result of radiation poisoning from the U.S. army's testing of the nascent hydrogen bomb at Bikini Atoll. Anders, the anti-nuclear philosopher, composed an epigraph in memory of Kuboyama, which Herbert Eimert used as a basis for his 1957-1962 Epitaph for Aikichi Kuboyama, composed in the WDR Studio in Cologne. Here it is, in three parts, with a brief spoken introduction.

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