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3 new books on Japan

yasukuniThree books on Japan just arrived in my mailbox from Columbia University Press. They are: Yasukuni, the War Dead and the Struggle for Japan’s Past by John Breen, Troubled Apologies Among Japan, Korea, and the United States by Alexis Dudden, and Chronicles of My Life: An American in the Heart of Japan by Donald Keene.

Since we will be in the air on our way to Denmark a week from now these will have to wait until our return in August. I hope to have reviews posted here on each in August and/or September.

japan us koreaFor the trip I plan to take Philip K. Dick: Five Novels of the 1960s & 70s. Why? Because last summer I read Four Novels of the 1960s on my trip to Chicago, and I have fond memories of the readings coupled with my time in Chicago. Plus, Five Novels is much longer than the three titles on Japan so it should keep me busy longer. I don’t really want to carry around multiple books.

heart of japanDo you have any books that you have read that are forever linked in your brain with a trip or vacation?

I certainly do. For instance, I can’t think of Neil Young’s biography without thinking of my trip to Canada last fall or vice versa. Ditto with a trip to Hawaii and Origins Reconsidered: In Search of What Makes Us Human and probably a dozen or more other trips/books read on the trip.

4 Responses to “3 new books on Japan”

  1. 1

    My review of Troubled Apologies can be found here:

  2. 2

    My review of Yasukuni can be found here:

  3. 3

    My review of Chronicles of My Life: An American in the Heart of Japan can be read here:

  4. 4
    John Breen:

    John Breen here. I think your comments on my Yasukuni book were not far off the mark. So, many thanks. If you want to read some more pro-Yasukuni arguments, can I suggest an article I have coming out? It is called ‘The danger is ever present: Catholic critiques of the Yasukuni shrine in post war Japan’. It will appear in the June 2009 issue of the Japan mission journal. You will have to decide whether the pro-Yasukuni arguments discussed there are any more persuasive than those in the Yasukuni book.
    I think they are worth reading.
    best wishes