Japan may rank extraordinarily low — 105th out of 136 countries — on the world gender gap index, but this year’s winners of two famous literary prizes were all women, an irony that will surely not be lost on the prizewinners and their readers.

The winner of the 150th Akutagawa Prize was Hiroko Oyamada for her novel “Ana” (“Hole”), a story with a woman as the central character.

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