Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Books on Japan

This is a selection of titles from our collection of books on Japan:

Japanese Law by Hiroshi Oda. This book presents the only English language, up-to-date, and comprehensive reference to Japanese law. It covers a wide range of topics, from the fundamentals of the Japanese legal system to the Civil Code, which is the cornerstone of private law in Japan and business related laws in a comprehensive manner. The author presents the current state of Japanese law in operation by referring to numerous cases and the latest discussions. Since the last edition in 1999, Japanese Law, in almost every area, has undergone substantial reform, all of which is reflected in the new text. In particular, the new edition contains the first comprehensive analysis of the new Company Law and the Financial Instruments and Exchange Law.

Modern Japan: A History in Documents by James L. Huffman. Employing a wide range of primary source materials, Modern Japan: A History in Documents, Second Edition, provides a colourful narrative of Japan's development since 1600. A variety of diary entries, letters, legal documents, and poems brings to life the early modern years, when Japan largely shut itself off from the outside world. A picture essay highlights the tumultuous decade and a half following the arrival of Commodore Matthew Perry and the U.S. Navy in 1853, which led to unprecedented changes and a new government. The dramatic rush to modernity in the late 1800s and early 1900s--accompanied by Japan's entry into the imperialist rivalry--is seen through travel accounts, novelists' recollections, and imperial rescripts, while editorial cartoons and prison memoirs recount the early twentieth-century rush, first toward pluralism, then toward war. Japan's recovery after defeat in World War II and its emergence as a vibrant democracy with the second largest economy in the world is chronicled through records as diverse as a funeral eulogy, a comic book description of Adam Smith's economic theories, and an e-journal interview. The documents are woven together in a scintillating narrative that brings to life one of the world's most remarkable national stories. The second edition includes an updated introduction with a note on sources and interpretation and 25 new documents including new evidence of Japanese imperialism, especially its expansion into Korea; the role of minorities in modern society; and events since the mid-1990s. There are additional editorial cartoons from the Meiji and Taisho eras, rare photos, archival maps, as well as excerpts from fiction and other literature, and updated further reading and website lists.

Art of Edo Japan: The Artist and the City 1615-1868 by Christine Guth. This beautifully illustrated survey examines the art and artists of the Edo period, one of the great epochs in Japanese art. Together with the imperial city of Kyoto and the port cities of Osaka and Nagasaki, the splendid capital city of Edo (now Tokyo) nurtured a magnificent tradition of painting, calligraphy, printmaking, ceramics, architecture, textile work, and lacquer. As each city created its own distinctive social, political, and economic environment, its art acquired a unique flavor and aesthetic. Author Christine Guth focuses on the urban aspects of Edo art, including discussions of many of Japan's most popular artists-Korin, Utamaro, and Hiroshige, among others-as well as those that are lesser known, and provides a fascinating look at the cities in which they worked. With index.

Japan and Japanese People: Views from a Transcultural Perspective - A Joint Project of Doshisha University and Eberhard Karls University Tubingen edited by Osamu Hattori and V. Eschbach-Szabo et al. This volume contains papers from a workshop on transcultural studies. The papers analyze Japan and Germany, including the exchange of ideas and cultural forms, mutual influence, and independent development in an age of globalization from different disciplines and perspectives.

Getting Genki in Japan: The Adventures and Misadventures of an American Family in Tokyo by Karen Pond and illustrated by Akiko Saito. Lively drawings enhance the anecdotes of the mother of a small American family new to the demands of daily life in Tokyo. Fortunately she emerges from social errors and disasters - and her coping strategies - with smiles. These and her rueful jokes bring laughs to the reader.

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