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Novelist Oe inducted into France's Legion of Honor.

TOKYO, May 22 Kyodo

Nobel laureate novelist Kenzaburo Oe was inducted into France's Legion of Honor and given the rank of commander on Wednesday at the French Embassy in Tokyo, embassy officials said.

French Ambassador to Japan Maurice Gourdault-Montagne expressed respect for Oe's works that are full of intellectualism and moral ideas.

''My philosophy of human beings, society and politics is based on French humanism,'' Oe said.

''Now I am about to start writing probably my last novel, called 'Ni Hyaku Nen no Kodomo' (200 Years of Children) and feel that it is a sign of good fortune to receive such a dignified accolade established 200 years ago,'' he added.

Oe was given the highest distinction the French government conveys on civilians.

Several Japanese nationals including architect Kenzo Tange and former U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees Sadako Ogata have received the same honor.

Oe, 67, won the 1994 Nobel Prize for Literature.
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Publication:Japan Weekly Monitor
Date:May 27, 2002
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