The Japan Society
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The Japan Society Review

The Japan Society Review is published on a bimonthly basis, both online and printed (members are entitled to receive a copy by post). Since the starting of the publication in 2006, each issue covers a selection of Japan-related books and films, as well as theatre and stage productions, tv series and exhibitions. Its purpose is to inform, entertain and encourage readers to explore the works for themselves.

The Japan Society Review is possible thanks to the work of volunteers who dedicated their time and expertise to help us to promote the learning and understanding of Japanese culture and society.

Things Remembered And Things Forgotten

Books

Things Remembered And Things Forgotten

By Nakajima Kyoko Forced to deliver their emotional payload within a compact format, time and again Nakajima lulls us into a sense of comforting security, only to pull a killer twist on us. What we think we know is always only half the story. Review by Laurence Green

Eating Wild Japan: Tracking the Culture of Foraged Foods, with a Guide to Plants and Recipes

Books

Eating Wild Japan: Tracking the Culture of Foraged Foods, with a Guide to Plants and Recipes

By Winifred Bird In this book, journalist Winifred Bird eats her way from one end of the country to the other in search of the hidden stories of Japan's wild foods, the people who pick them, and the places whose histories they've shaped. Review by Katie Croft

Tokyo Junkie: 60 Years of Bright Lights and Back Alleys... and Baseball

Books

Tokyo Junkie: 60 Years of Bright Lights and Back Alleys... and Baseball

By Robert Whiting As journalist and author who has lived in Tokyo on and off for more than fifty years, Robert Whiting looks back over that vast spread of years comes in the form of a fascinating memoir, interweaving his personal narrative into the unfolding backdrop of Japan’s own great journey through time. Review by Laurence Green

Arbiters of Patriotism: Right-Wing Scholars in Imperial Japan

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Arbiters of Patriotism: Right-Wing Scholars in Imperial Japan

By John D. Person In this book, John D. Person explores the lives of two of the most notorious right-wing intellectuals responsible for leading such attacks in prewar and wartime Japan: Minoda Muneki (1894-1946) and Mitsui Koshi (1883-1953) of the Genri Nippon (Japan Principle) Society. Review by Francesco Cioffo

Japan from Anime to Zen: Quick takes on Culture, Art, History, Food…And More

Books

Japan from Anime to Zen: Quick takes on Culture, Art, History, Food…And More

By David Watts Barton Japan from Anime to Zen is the latest in a long line of guidebooks and travelogues that attempt to answer that eternal ‘why?’ we have all posed at one point or other when considering what exactly it is that fascinates us so much about Japan. Review by Laurence Green

The Day the Sun Fell: Memoirs of a Survivor of the Atomic Bomb

Books

The Day the Sun Fell: Memoirs of a Survivor of the Atomic Bomb

By Hashizume Bun The Day the Sun Fell is an accessible emotional thriller through which we follow Hashizume and her family and friends as they try to recover from the atomic bomb in Hiroshima. Review by Elizabeth Chappell

A Life of Sir Harry Parkes: British Minister to Japan, China and Korea, 1841-1885

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A Life of Sir Harry Parkes: British Minister to Japan, China and Korea, 1841-1885

By Robert Morton In this well-illustrated biography of Harry Parkes, Robert Morton records his life and achievements, as well as his personality in a balanced and judicious way, and with a biographer’s voice that is an attractive mixture of chatty enthusiasm and rigorous scholarship. Review by David Warren

British Engagement with Japan, 1854–1922: The Origins and Course of an Unlikely Alliance

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British Engagement with Japan, 1854–1922: The Origins and Course of an Unlikely Alliance

By Antony Best This is an extremely well-researched book which charts the relationship of Britain and Japan from its earliest days until the demise of the Anglo-Japanese alliance in the early 1920s. Review by Robert Morton

Flower Petals Fall, but the Flower Endures: The Japanese Philosophy of Transience

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Flower Petals Fall, but the Flower Endures: The Japanese Philosophy of Transience

By Seiichi Takeuchi The Japanese philosophy of impermanence is the subtitle and the core of the book, but I felt the meat of the content only spoke to one aspect of impermanence, the vicissitudes of life buffeting our self-determinations. Review by Chris Arning

Tokachi Millennium Forest: Pioneering a New Way of Gardening with Nature

Books

Tokachi Millennium Forest: Pioneering a New Way of Gardening with Nature

By Dan Pearson with Midori Shintani This book charts the design, creation and evolution of the Tokachi Millennium Forest, which the author has been involved with for the last 20 years. Review by Katie Croft