Rahul Sharma (Editor)

1 Litre no Namida

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Original title  1リットルの涙
Language  Japanese
Pages  270 pp
Author  Aya Kitō
Publisher  Gentosha
Country  Japan
Translator  Ichi Rittoru no Namida
Media type  Print (Paperback)
Originally published  25 February 1986
Adaptations  A Litre of Tears (2005)
Genre  Non-fiction novel
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Publication date  Japan: February 25, 1986

1 Litre no Namida (1リットルの涙, Ichi Rittoru no Namida, lit. "1 Litre of Tears"; also called A Diary with Tears or A Diary of Tears) is a dramatic tragedy diary written by Aya Kitō (木藤亜也, Kitō Aya, July 19, 1962 - May 23, 1988) published shortly before her death. The diary, a true story based on her own life, was originally written in first person. It is about a girl coping with her teenage life along with a degenerative disease. She keeps a diary of not only what she does but how she feels and the hardships she must endure. Initially, the diary's purpose was for Kitō to chronicle impressions she had about how the disease was affecting her daily life. As the disease progressed, however, the diary became Kitō's outlet for describing the intense personal struggles she underwent in coping, adapting, and ultimately trying to survive her disease. As she notes in one entry, "I write because writing is evidence that I am still alive."


Plot summary

Aya Kitō was diagnosed with a disease called spinocerebellar degeneration when she was 15 years old. The disease causes the person to lose control over their body, but because the person can retain all mental ability the disease acts as a prison. So in the end she cannot eat, walk or talk.

Through family, medical examinations and rehabilitations, and finally succumbing to the disease, Aya must cope with the disease and live on with life until her death at the age of 25.


A Litre of Tears is the film version of the drama.

TV series

A Japanese TV drama, with the same title 1 Litre no Namida, was aired by Fuji TV in 2005 based on the life of Aya. The main character Aya Ikeuchi, played by Erika Sawajiri, depicts a girl with the same disease as Aya Kitō who goes through many of the same problems.


1 Litre no Namida Wikipedia