Akamatsu Toshiko (1912–2000), the artist this book focuses on, is more famously known as Maruki Toshi. She is the female half of the Maruki couple, creators of the Nuclear Panels, a series of monumental mural paintings of Hiroshima in the aftermath of the bomb. Charlotte Eubanks's rather bold decision to use the artist's premarital name Akamatsu reveals how the fūfu dōsei system in Japan, which stipulates that married couples must share the same last name, might have done substantial injustice to the female artist. Akamatsu, whom Eubanks refers to as Toshi throughout The Art of Persistence, is a fascinating artist whose career took her from Hokkaido, to Tokyo, to the Japanese mandate in Micronesia, and to Moscow. She deserves an independent study that looks at her works separately from her husband's.

The introduction illuminates the book's key concepts, such as persistence and microhistory, and provides a biography of...

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