At the Goodbye to Nuclear Power Rally that attracted 60,000 people in Tokyo’s Meiji Park last September, one woman’s speech stirred the audience. The speaker was Ruiko Muto, a long-time devotee to anti-nuclear activism from Miharu Town, Fukushima. Her cogent words expressed the confused and conflicted feelings experienced by people in Fukushima since the earthquake of March 11, 2011, as well as their determination and hope to rise again. The powerful speech traveled all over the world via YouTube and Twitter, bringing tears to many eyes.
Her book, From Fukushima to You (Otsuki Shoten), includes Muto’s speech at the Rally and a newly written account of her life, along with photographs by photojournalist Takashi Morizumi. The simple prose poignantly describes her earlier struggles to live without nuclear power in the beautiful natural landscape of Fukushima and the profound sorrow caused by the radioactive pollution after the incident.
Muto now locates her hopes in women’s movements such as the Sit-in Protest of 100 Women Who Say No to Nuclear Power. “We can always unlock and leave the invisible cage we are trapped in,” she proclaims.
Yuho Asaka, an old friend of Muto and an activist/writer herself, contributes to the book as well.
Original article on the WAN Website written by Yui Iwashita (March 2, 2012)
Translated and Adapted by Aya Kitamura
Muto's speech at the Rally can be viewed here.