Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Japanese diaries

So Lovely a Country Will Never Perish: Wartime Diaries of Japanese Writers

I had a look at this in the bookstore recently -- it is beautifully written and translated. Both Keene and the diarists he has translated have exceptional psychological insight into an interesting time in Japanese history. There are many striking anecdotes. For example, one diarist records the applause of cinema goers in occupied Japan during American newsreels showing kamikaze fighters striking US ships.

See also Modern Japanese diaries: the Japanese at home and abroad as revealed through their diaries, which chronicles the impressions of early Japanese travelers visiting America, Europe and other parts of the world.

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