Takeru Inukai

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In this Japanese name, the family name is Inukai.
Takeru Inukai
Takeru inukai.jpg
Inukai Takeru in 1932
Native name 犬養 健
Born (1896-07-28)28 July 1896
Tokyo, Japan
Died 28 August 1960(1960-08-28) (aged 64)
Tokyo, Japan
Resting place Aoyama Cemetery, Tokyo
Occupation writer, politician
Language Japanese
Alma mater Tokyo Imperial University
Genre novels, stage plays

Takeru Inukai (犬養 健 Inukai Takeru?, 28 July 1896 – 28 August 1960) was a Japanese politician and novelist active in Shōwa period Japan. Also known as "Inukai Ken", he was the third son of Prime Minister of Japan, Inukai Tsuyoshi.


Inukai was born in the Ushigome district of Tokyo. Although accepted into the Tokyo Imperial University’s School of Philosophy, he left without graduation. Interested in literature from his student days, he gravitated to the Shirakaba ("White Birch") literary society due to its liberal humanistic outlook. His works were influenced by Mushanokōji Saneatsu and Nagayo Yoshirō, and he became a member of the Japanese chapter of the International PEN.

He ran for a seat from the Tokyo 2nd District in the lower house of the Japanese Diet, under the Rikken Seiyūkai party in the 1930 General Election, and was elected twelve times holding a seat until his death in August 1960. Inukai was a press secretary under the first Konoe Fumimaro administration. He split with the Rikken Seiyūkai in 1939, joining a neutral faction led by Tsuneo Kanemitsu. He was held for questioning by the police in the Sorge Spy Incident.

As his father, Inukai Tsuyoshi, had always supported friendly relations with China, Inukai had contacts and good relations with Chinese politicians during the pre-war period. After his father's assassination in the May 15 Incident, he continued to strive for restoration of good Sino-Japanese relations, and especially provided support to the Wang Jingwei government in hopes that it would bring the stability that would allow Japan to withdraw its troops from the China quagmire.

During the 1942 General Election, Inukai was reelected as an independent candidate opposing the Taisei Yokusankai.

After World War II in 1945, Inukai helped organize the Japan Progressive Party, of which he became chairman. The party merged with the Democratic Party, one of the forerunner of the Liberal Democratic Party in 1948. In 1952, under the 4th Yoshida Shigeru cabinet, Inukai became Minister of Justice. He continued in the same position in the 5th Yoshida cabinet in 1953. However, in the Shipbuilding Scandal of 1954 (under pressure from Prime Minister Yoshida), Inukai refused to approve of the prosecution of ex-Prime Minister Satō Eisaku, who had been indicted for corruption and misuse of public funds. Afterwards, he resigned as Justice Minister in protest.

Inukai died in 1960 at the age of 64, and his grave is located at Aoyama Cemetery in Tokyo.[1] His son, Inukai Yasuhiko (b. 1928) was president of Kyodo News.


  • Hoshii, Iwao. Japan's Pseudo-democracy. Routledge. (1993). ISBN 1873410077
  • Mitchell, Richard H. Political bribery in Japan. University of Hawaii Press (1996) ISBN 0824818199
  • Stockwin. J.A.A. Dictionary of the Modern Politics of Japan. Taylor & Francis. (2003). ISBN 0203402170


Political offices
Preceded by
Tokutarō Kimura
Minister of Justice
Succeeded by
Ryōgorō Katō
House of Representatives of Japan
Preceded by
Nirō Hoshijima
Representative for Okayama 2nd district
Served alongside: Nirō Hoshijima, Ryōgo Hashimoto, many others
Succeeded by
Saburō Eda
Ryūtarō Hashimoto
New district Representative for Okayama At-large district
(purged in 1947, lifted in 1948)
Served alongside: Takuichi Inoue, many others
District eliminated
Preceded by
Tsuyoshi Inukai
Representative for Okayama 2nd district
Served alongside: Tanjirō Nishimura, Gōtarō Ogawa, others
District eliminated
Preceded by
Yadanji Nakajima
Representative for Tokyo 2nd district
Served alongside: Ichirō Hatoyama, Isoo Abe, others
Succeeded by
Isoo Abe
Party political offices
Preceded by
Yūsuke Tsurumi
Secretary-general of the Japan Progressive Party
1945 or 1946 (under party president Chūji Machida)
Succeeded by
Sadayoshi Hitotsumatsu
Preceded by
Takao Saitō
General council chairman of the Japan Progressive Party
1946 or 1947 (under party president Kijūrō Shidehara)
Party dissolved
Merged into Democratic Party