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The Donald Richie Reader: 50 Years of Writing on Japan Paperback – 17 Nov 2003

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Product details

  • Paperback: 276 pages
  • Publisher: Stone Bridge Press (17 Nov. 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1880656612
  • ISBN-13: 978-1880656617
  • Product Dimensions: 17.8 x 2 x 22.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 971,131 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

From the Publisher

This hardcover printing of THE DONALD RICHIE READER: 50 YEARS OF WRITING ON JAPAN is a limited first edition. Only 300 books will be printed and available for sale. (A trade paperback edition is also available.) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Donald Richie has been writing about Japan for over 50 years from his base in Tokyo and is the author of over 40 books and hundreds of essays and reviews. He is widely admired for his incisive film studies on Ozu and Kurosawa, and for his stylish and incisive observations on Japanese culture.


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By A Customer on 31 Oct. 2001
Format: Paperback
For a foreigner living in Japan it seems an alarmingly regular occurrence that any other alien you meet opens a chat with, "How long have you been here?"
And after the answer a creeping feeling of being trapped in either the camp of knowing less or more overcomes you. Your opinions on this curious country are discounted if you dare to have stayed less, and are competitively eyed with particular note made of language ability if dwelling longer.
So it's as refreshing as the change from summer to autumn to read the thoughts of Donald Richie, a man who's been here some 50 years but interprets with disarming freshness. This 77-year- old American first arrived in 1946 with the Maritime Services and despite his persistent feeling of alienation calls Tokyo home.
Silva's is an absorbing anthology of Richie's works on Japan, his introduction a rich treat of biographical facts, literary allusions and footnotes. His thickly layered style succeeds in making the reader enjoy Richie's spare prose that follows all the more.
Silva gives proper prominence to the young Richie's writing of seeing Mt Fuji while standing at Ginza crossing in 1947 on a cold winter day. The usual obstructions flattened by his countrymen's firebombing, the sky clear of the now constant pollution. "Block after block of rubble, stretching to the horizon ... Yet already people were returning to the city," he then wrote.
Silva reveals Richie's first ambition was to flee his Ohio hometown. And when he arrived he quotes the writer saying, "I knew nothing about Japan. The reasons I liked it were purely emotional. I was ready to fall in love with whatever fell in my lap."
A few years after arriving, Richie felt compelled to return home for a formal education.
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