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In Praise of History

Earl Miner, 1 March 1984

A History of Japanese Literature. Vol. I: The First Thousand Years 
by Shuichi Kato, translated by David Chibbett.
Macmillan, 319 pp., £20, September 1979, 0 333 19882 4
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A History of Japanese Literature. Vol. II: The Years of Isolation 
by Shuichi Kato, translated by Don Sanderson.
Macmillan, 230 pp., £20, October 1983, 0 333 22088 9
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A History of Japanese Literature. Vol. III: The Modern Years 
by Shuichi Kato, translated by Don Sanderson.
Macmillan, 307 pp., £20, October 1983, 0 333 34133 3
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World within Walls 
by Donald Keene.
Secker, 624 pp., £15, January 1977, 0 436 23266 9
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Modern Japanese Poets and the Nature of Literature 
by Makoto Ueda.
Stanford, 451 pp., $28.50, September 1983, 0 8047 1166 6
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Low City, High City: Tokyo from Edo to the Earthquake 
by Edward Seidensticker.
Allen Lane, 302 pp., £16.95, September 1983, 0 7139 1597 8
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... the ways of executing such an important enterprise. The partial alternative to Kato in English is Donald Keene, who has published a counterpart to Kato’s Edo period volume. World within Walls is to be followed before long by two volumes on modern Japanese literature. Keene is not simply the most prolific of ...

Growing Vegetables

Phyllis Birnbaum: Kiyosawa Kiyoshi, 11 November 1999

A Diary of Darkness: The Wartime Diary of Kiyosawa Kiyoshi 
translated by Eugene Soviak.
Princeton, 391 pp., £30, January 1999, 9780691001432
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... however intellectual or unintellectual, into fervent support of the war effort. According to Donald Keene, some of the Japanese writers ‘who expressed themselves so joyously’ on 8 December 1941 – the day after the attack on Pearl Harbor – probably ‘feared that unless they appeared enthusiastic they might fall under suspicion of harbouring ...

At the Hayward

Peter Campbell: Roy Lichtenstein, 18 March 2004

... years, has regularly dipped into it. But there is a difference between Degas’s attitude to, say, Keene and Japanese prints and Lichtenstein’s to commercial art. For Degas, Keene was a great draughtsman. Lichtenstein, on the other hand, needed crude performances, not great ones. He said of the moment when he began to use ...

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