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About the Author

Toru Matsui (1910~1994) was social activist and essayist. His father (1870~1933) was a playwright named Shôyô Matsui. During the last war he was required by the Government General of Taiwan to take on the job of dramatic supervision in the whole island. In post-war days he formed Ari-no Machi (Ants Town) with those who shared the same aspiration and contributed to town-building for poor people (mostly garbage collectors) in Sumida Park in Tokyo, becoming the leader there with Satoko Kitahara. His book was made into the movie with the same title of his book, ”Arino Machino Maria” (Mary in Ants Town), featuring her, became famous.


His other writings include “Binbo Tsuihô – Arino Machino Keizaigaku” (Expelling Poverty – Economics of Ants Town), “Tengoku-wa Hadaka” (Naked is Heaven), “Shi-ni Katsu-madeno 30-nichi – Shôshikan Monogatari” (Thirty Days Overcoming Death – The Story of the Shôshikan), “Inochi Kiwami-nashi – Hokekyô Gensô” (Limitless is Life – Imagery of Lotus Sutra), “Zen-no Genryû-wo Tazunete – Tendai Shôshikan Kôwa” (In Pursuit of the Source of Zen – Lectures on Tendai’s Shôshikan), and many others.