Waseda University in Tokyo will house a library exclusively featuring the works of Haruki Murakami, a renowned Japanese novelist. A literature house devoted to a living author is indeed quite unprecedented, as pointed out by many in the field.
The Asahi Shimbun reported that Murakami said in the press conference held on Wednesday that he felt a bit nervous. “I wish a place like this had been built after my death; what if I commit a crime? It would cause serious trouble to Waseda,” joked the Japanese novelist, saying that he would fully cooperate for the betterment of the library and expressing a wish that the library expands to include works and books of other novelists as well.
The literature house was renovated from an old building within the university’s site. Five stories high with one underground floor, the library was funded by Tadashi Yanai, the founder of the parent company of Uniqlo and a Waseda alumnus, and was renovated by prominent architect Kengo Kuma.
The Murakami Haruki library will house translations of his work in 50 different languages, including Korean and English, along with his collection of records and about 10,000 materials, including manuscripts personally donated by the author himself.