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Confessions of a Yakuza

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Confessions of a Yakuza (浅草博徒一代, Asakusa bakuto ichidai) is a book by Japanese doctor and author Junichi Saga (1991). It recounts a series of stories from the life of his patient Eiji Ijichi, a former Yakuza boss, as told in the last months of his life.The book starts with the teenage Ijichi running away from his family home in Utsunomiya to Tokyo, to find a judge's mistress who he was having an affair with. The book follows Ijichi through his first job at a family coal merchant's in the then district of Fukagawa, his various mistresses and treatment for syphilis, the 1923 Great Kantō earthquake, his initiation into the gang that controlled gambling in the Asakusa entertainment area, his various stretches in prison, his overseas service in occupied Korea in the 1920s, his rise to the boss of the gang, and his experiences during and after World War II. The book paints a colourful picture of life in Japan in the first half of the 20th century, the structure and customs of a yakuza gang, gambling sessions, prison and army life. The English translation of the book initially was published under the title "THE GAMBLER'S TALE: A Life in Japan's Underworld."
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original title: 浅草博徒一代
date of publication: 1991
genre: memoir

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