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Bushido, The Soul of Japan

Bushido, The Soul of Japan [Kindle Edition]

Inazo Nitobe
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Product Description

Pyrrhus Press specializes in bringing books long out of date back to life, allowing today’s readers access to yesterday’s treasures.
This book looks at the history and culture of the Japanese over the centuries. From the preface:
“About ten years ago, while spending a few days under the hospitable roof of the distinguished Belgian jurist, the lamented M. de Laveleye, our conversation turned, during one of our rambles, to the subject of religion. "Do you mean to say," asked the venerable professor, "that you have no religious instruction in your schools?" On my replying in the negative he suddenly halted in astonishment, and in a voice which I shall not easily forget, he repeated "No religion! How do you impart moral education?" The question stunned me at the time. I could give no ready answer, for the moral precepts I learned in my childhood days, were not given in schools; and not until I began to analyze the different elements that formed my notions of right and wrong, did I find that it was Bushido that breathed them into my nostrils.
The direct inception of this little book is due to the frequent queries put by my wife as to the reasons why such and such ideas and customs prevail in Japan.
In my attempts to give satisfactory replies to M. de Laveleye and to my wife, I found that without understanding Feudalism and Bushido,[1] the moral ideas of present Japan are a sealed volume.”

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1109 KB
  • Print Length: 86 pages
  • Publisher: Pyrrhus Press (8 Aug 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #162,460 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful introduction 7 Jan 2004
Inazo Nitobe (1862-1933) was a Japanese author with a unique perspective; he was an educator and a Quaker. When queried about the basis of morality in Japan, he thought long and hard on the subject. His answer was that Bushido was the Soul of Japan, and from that idea flowed this book.
In this wonderful book, Mr. Nitobe explains Bushido to the Western observer. Using the Bible and other Western literature as examples of common points of reference, he explains 1) the origins and sources of Bushido, 2) its character and teachings, 3) its influence, and 4) its continuity and permanence.
So, if you are interested in Bushido in particular, or Japan in general, then I strongly recommend this book. Even though it was first published in 1905, it makes a wonderful introduction to the Western reader. I highly recommend this book!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Bushi book 24 Oct 2011
By Simon
This book is written by a member of a samurai family and is quite in depth but don't be put off the first time, I had to read it twice! It does of course give you an insight in to the way of bushi culture and presents some good opinions though maybe not practicable in this century.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A bit strange 27 May 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The author was a Japanese living in America, and writing in English before WW1 for an American and European audience. He was also a Christian convert. The intent was apparently to make the Japanese appear likeable to The West.

A strange book therefore, but worth reading if you are interested in the history of Japan's relations with The West.
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