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The highest prize in Japanese literature, it has been awarded on a roughly semiannual basis since 1935, although it was halted between 1944 and 1949. It is named for novelist Akutagawa Ryunosuke. Popular fiction does not receive the Akutagawa—it is reserved for the densest, most groundbreaking work in the language.

Winners are:

1935 Ishikawa Satomi
1936 Oda Takeo, Tsuruda Tomoya, Ishikawa Atsu, Tomizawa Aritameo
1937 Ozaki Itsuo, Hino Ashihei
1938 Nakayama Yoshihide, Nakazato Tsuneko
1939 Handa Yoshiyuki, Nagatani Ken, Samukawa Kotaro
1940 Sakurada Tsunehisa
1941 Tada Yukei, Shibaki Yoshiko
1942 Kuramitsu Toshio
1943 Ishizuka Kikuzo, Higashinobe Kaoru
1944 Yagi Yoshinori, Obi Juso, Shimizu Motoyoshi
1945-1948 not awarded
1949 Otani Tsuyoshi, Yuki Shigeko, Inoue Yasushi
1950 Tsuji Ryoichi
1951 Abe Kobo, Ishikawa Toshimitsu, Hotta Yoshie
1952 Gomi Kosuke, Matsumoto Seicho
1953 Yasuoka Shotaro
1954 Yoshiyuki Junnosuke, Kojima Nobuo, Shono Junzo
1955 Endo Shusaku, Ishihara Shintaro
1956 Kondo Keitaro
1957 Kikumura Itaru, Kaiko Takeshi
1958 Oe Kenzaburo
1959 Shiba Shiro
1960 Kita Morio, Miura Tetsuo
1961 Uno Koichiro
1962 Kawamura Akira
1963 Goto Kiichi, Kono Taeko, Tanabe Seiko
1964 Shibata Shoji
1965 Tsumura Sadako, Takai Yuichi
1966 Murayama Takeshi
1967 Ogi Tatsuhiro, Kashiwara Heizo
1968 Marutani Saiichi, Oba Minako
1969 Shoji Isao, Takubo Hideo, Kiyooka Takuyuki
1970 Yoshida Kazuko, Furuyama Komao, Furui Yukichi
1971 Ri Kaisei, Higashi Mineo
1972 Hatayama Hiroshi, Miyabara Akio, Yamamoto Michiko, Go Shizuko
1973 Miki Taku, Noro Kuninobu, Mori Atsunori
1974 Hino Keizo, Sakada Hiro
1975 Hayashi Kyoko, Nakagami Kenji, Okamatsu Kazuo
1976 Murakami Ryu
1977 Mita Masahiro, Ikeda Masuo, Miyamoto Toteru, Takagi Shumi
1978 Takahashi Kiichiro, Takahashi Michitsuna
1979 Shigekane Yoshiko, Seino Satoshi, Mori Reiko
1980 Otsuji Katsuhiko
1981 Yoshiyuki Michie
1982 Kato Yukiko, Kara Juro
1983 Kasawara Hiroshi, Takagi Nobuko
1984 Kizaki Satoko
1985 Yonedani Fumiko
1986 not awarded
1987 Murata Kiyoko, Ikezawa Natsuki, Miura Kiyohiro
1988 Arai Mitsuru, Namboku Keishi, Ri Yanji
1989 Oka Akira, Takizawa Mieko
1990 Tsujihara Noboru, Ogawa Yoko
1991 Henmi Isao, Ogino Anna, Matsumura Eiko
1992 Fujiwara Satomi, Tawada Yoko
1993 Yoshimeki Haruhiko, Okuizumi Hikaru
1994 Muroi Mitsuhiro, Shoya Yoriko
1995 Hosaka Kazushi
1996 Matayoshi Eiki, Kawagami Hiromi, Tsuji Hitonari, Yu Miri
1997 Medoruma Satoshi
1998 Hanamura Mangetsu, Fujizawa Makoto, Hirano Keiichiro
1999 Haruka Runa, Fujino Chiyo
2000 Machida Tsuyoshi, Matsuura Hisaki, Seirai Yuichi, Horie Toshiyuki
2001 Genyu Munehisa, Nagashima Kuniaki
2002 Yoshida Shuichi
2003 Yoshimura Manichi
Note: This list was taken from a Japanese source, so some of these names may be romanized incorrectly: if you spot an error, please /msg me.

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