lamdha books -
Catalogue of books on Japanese life and culture

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Brown, Kendall (ed.)
Dangerous Beauties and Dutiful Wives Popular Portraits of Women in Japan, 1905-1925
Dover Publications Inc., New York NY, 2011.
Quarto; paperback; 106pp., colour illustrations. Remainder. New. This captivating gallery offers rare glimpses of Japanese culture during the early years of the 20th century. Drawn from popular women's magazines of the Taisho period, its kuchi-e (frontispiece pictures) of bijin (beauties) represent a variety of artists, from the visual poetry of famous painters to more prosaic efforts by anonymous designers. Printed in the era's latest techniques of colour lithography and offset printing, these kuchi-e bijin were created for mass production, yet they echo the form and appeal of woodblock prints from earlier generations. Their fashions are new enough to be exciting but sufficiently traditional to be reassuringly familiar. Embracing noble ideals and modern reality, the kuchi-e bijin suggest both the aspirations and the mundane truths of their audience, combining the sense of fine art and the sensibilities of popular illustration.
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Buchanan, Daniel Crump
Japanese Proverbs and Sayings
University of Oklahoma Press, 1965.
Octavo hardcover; orange cloth boards with white spine label and orange titling; 280pp., top edge speckled in orange. A few tiny marks on lower text block edge; well-rubbed dustwrapper with mild wear to edges. Very good to near fine. Wrapper now professionally protected by superior non-adhesive polypropylene film with white paper backing.
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Bush, Lewis
77 Samurai: Japan's First Embassy to America Based on the book by Itsuro Hattori
Kodansha International, Tokyo, 1968.
Octavo hardcover; quarter bound, brown cloth boards with white spine, gilt titling and upper board black title label, map endpapers; 248pp., monochrome plates and illustrations. Toned text block edges with one or two spots; mild edgewear with one or two tiny tears to illustrated dustwrapper. Very good. Wrapper now professionally protected by superior non-adhesive polypropylene film with white paper backing. Long forgotten by the US as well as Japan the embassy sent from Edo to Washington in 1860 was one of the most remarkable in the history of international relations. Seventy-seven Japanese, all anti-foreign, all opposed to the opening of their country to the world, spent ten months cheek by jowl with people whom they habitually referred to as 'the hairy ones' or 'the barbarians' during which time they received a warm-hearted and magnificent welcome unprecedented in the history of the then young United States. To the Americans, the two-sworded, top-knotted Japanese might easily have been creatures from another planet; and to the samurai, the Americans' way of life, their political system and their freedoms were both incredible and incomprehensible. The samurai were wined, dined and lionized at San Francisco, Washington, Baltimore and Philadelphia; in New York their procession from the Battery outshone anything that had been seen in the metropolis. The authors have drawn heavily upon Muragaki's diary - without doubt the most interesting of the journals kept during the trip. A penetrating, amusing, and an always authoritative account of two such differing cultures struggling to find a common meeting ground.
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Cooper, Michael (trans.)
This Island of Japon - Joao Rodrigues' Account of 16th Century Japan
Kodansha, Tokyo, 1973.
First edition: hardcover, octavo; maroon cloth boards with gilt spine titling, decorated endpapers; 354pp., colour frontispiece and monochrome plates. Owner's name. Faint spotting to upper text block edge; a few scattered spots on half-title page; dustwrapper spine panel slightly faded and mild wear to edges. Very good to near fine. Wrapper now professionally protected by superior non-adhesive polypropylene film with white paper backing. The importance of the early Jesuit missionaries' eyewitness account of Japan in that colourful and eventful period between the rise of Oda Nobunaga and the implementation of the 'closed-country' policy by the Tokugawa Bakufu in 1639-40, has long been recognized by historians, both Japanese and western. Of all the missionaries - indeed of all the Europeans - who visited or lived in Japan during the 16th-17th centuries, none knew the country, the people, and their culture, better than did Joao Rodrigues. A Portuguese who arrived in Kyushu as a 16-year-old lad in 1577, when Otomo Yoshishige was a power in the land, he remained in the island-empire, with the exception of a short trip to Macao in 1596, until his expulsion from Nagasaki in 1610. At the time of his death at Macao in 1633, he was still actively working on the draft of his manuscript History of the Japan Mission. Portions of this work (from later copies) were used by previous historians such as the Jesuit Fathers Cros (1900) and Schurhammer (1923-72), but the work as a whole has only been thoroughly analysed and publicized by Michael Cooper. This Island of Japon contains all the information about Japan which Rodrigues wrote and which is likely to be of interest to the modern student of the period. Fr. Cooper has purged the rambling Portuguese text of numerous irrelevant digressions and needless repetitions, with the result that the English translation reads more smoothly and coherently than the original. All the material concerning Japanese culture, in the more restricted sense of the term has been retained, and herein lies the real importance and interest of Rodrigues' work. His grasp of Japanese literature, his appreciation of Japanese art, his knowledge of the tea-ceremony and of many other distinctive aspects of Japanese culture, were not to be attained by any other westerner until the 19th century. An indispensable book of the Momoyama and Keicho periods, and it is excellently edited, illustrated and produced. - From C.R. Boxer
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Dekura, Hideo
Teppanyaki Barbecue - signed Japanese Cooking on a Hotplate
New Holland Publishers, Sydney NSW, 2007.
Quarto; hardcover; quarter bound in cloth with illustrated boards, silver-gilt spine and upper board titles and decorative red endpapers; 192pp., with many full-colour illustrations. Mild wear; inscribed to person in ink to the title page by the author; bumped lower board corners and mild rubbing to covers. No dustwrapper, as issued. Very good to near fine.
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Fahr-Becker, Gabriele & Narimi Hatano (Klaus Frahm, illus.)
Ryokan A Japanese Tradition
Konemann/Tandem verlag, Koln Germany, 2005.
Quarto; hardcover; 335pp., colour illustrations. Mild wear; top corners bumped. Lightly scuffed dustwrapper with slight edgewear (now professionally protected by superior non-adhesive polypropylene film). Very good. The Ryokan - or travellers' inn - was a mainstay of medieval Japan, a place where weary walkers could stop for a night and break their progress until the next day. More than a hotel or even a bed 'n' breakfast, the ryokan offers sanctuary and solitude, at once banishing the bustling outside world and responding the guests' needs. Over time certain features of the ryokan have become de rigeur and this volume covers all the perquisites for replicating the "style" in one's own domestic arrangement.
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Joly, Henri L.
Legend in Japanese Art A Description of Historical Episodes, Legendary Characters, Folk-Lore, Myths, Religious Symbolism, Illustrated in the Arts of Old Japan
Charles E. Tuttle Co., Rutland VT, 1968.
Reprint: quarto; hardcover, with gilt spine titles and upper board decorations, upper board titles and decorative endpapers; 623pp., with a colour frontispiece, 15 colour plates and many monochrome illustrations. Mild wear; somewhat shaken; text block edges lightly toned; mild offset to the endpapers; previous owner's name in ink and small scrape to the flyleaf. Dustwrapper is rubbed and mildly edgeworn with a few small tears to the edges; spine panel sunned; now backed by archival-quality white paper and professionally protected by superior non-adhesive polypropylene film. Very good. "This voluminous work might be well described as a dictionary. Its plan is to give alphabetically an account of the mythological persons who are often represented in Japanese art. The book is one to which collectors will turn to identify objects, either carvings or drawings, and to them it will be of great use with its seven hundred illustrations and eleven hundred and twenty entries from 'A to Z'. " - The Spectator
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Kamekura, Junichi, Mamoru Watanabe & Gideon Bosker
Ekiben The Art of the Japanese Box Lunch
Chronicle Books, San Francisco CA, 1989.
Square quarto paperback, 118pp., colour illustrations. Owner's name. Mild creasing along front fore-edge. Otherwise minor wear; very good to near fine. Ekiben, the Japanese box lunch available at train stations, is fast food elevated to high culinary art and design. Each of the country's five thousand stations sells a unique box lunch that reflects the cooking of the region, served in an eye-catching container. These beautifully designed boxes are sometimes even shaped like masks, tennis rackets, nuts, golf balls or other traditional or whimsical objects. More than twelve million are sold to travellers and commuters in Japan every day.
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Keene, Donald
The Blue-Eyed Tarokaja: A Donald Keene Anthology
Columbia University Press, New York, 1996.
First edition thus. Octavo hardcover; quarter bound, black boards with black spine and blue gilt spine titling; 290pp. One or two tiny marks on text block; mildly rubbed dustwrapper. Otherwise near fine. Wrapper now professionally protected by superior non-adhesive polypropylene film. The preeminent Western authority on Japanese literature a presents a collection of personal essays and literary vignettes that offers a fresh and personal insight into his prolific career as a writer and translator, traveler and social observer.
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Keene, Donald
Modern Japanese Diaries The Japanese at Home and Abroad as Revealed Through Their Diaries
Henry Holt & Co., New York, 1995.
Octavo paperback; 534pp. Minor wear only; near fine.
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Keene, Donald
Travelers of a Hundred Ages The Japanese as Revealed Through 1000 Years of Diaries
Henry Holt & Co., New York, 1989.
Octavo paperback; 468pp. Minor wear only; near fine.
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le Nestour, Patrick, with Audie Bock (Akeji Sumiyoshi, illus.)
The Mystery of Things Evocations of the Japanese Supernatural
John Weatherhill Inc., New York NY, 1972
Royal octavo; hardcover, with gilt spine titles, an upper board decoration on a wooden label and decorative endpapers; 141pp., with many monochrome illustrations and decorations. Minor wear. Dustwrapper now professionally protected by superior non-adhesive polypropylene film. Near fine. A collection of Japanese tales of the supernatural illustrated with paintings composed of the title or theme of each story in calligraphy.
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"Madame Yukio Ozaki"
Romances of Old Japan Rendered into English from Japanese Sources
Simpkin Marshall Hamilton Kent & Co. Ltd., London, 1920.
Royal octavo; hardcover, with gilt spine and upper board titles and decorations; 279pp., with a colour frontispiece (with tissue guard), a decorated title page and 31 other colour and monochrome plates (with tissue guards). Moderate wear; shaken; spine extremities softened; text block edges well embrowned; scattered foxing throughout; previous owner's name in ink to the flyleaf. Dustwrapper is well rubbed and edgeworn; spine panel sunned and chipping to the extremities; now backed by archival-quality white paper and professionally protected by superior non-adhesive polypropylene film. Very good.
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Masatsugu, Mitsuyuki
The Modern Samurai Society Duty and Dependence in Contemporary Japan
Amacom, New York, 1982.
Octavo hardcover; black boards with gilt spine titling; 226pp. Minor wear; dustwrapper slightly rubbed. Very good to near fine. Wrapper now professionally protected by superior non-adhesive polypropylene film with white paper backing.
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Matsuhisa, Nobu (Masashi Kuma, illus.)
Nobu's Vegetarian Cookbook
Pie Books, Tokyo Japan, 2011.
Quarto; hardcover, illustrated boards with upper board titles and decorated endpapers; 175pp., with many colour illustrations. Minor wear; small bump to the lower board bottom edge. Slightly rubbed dustwrapper; now professionally protected by superior non-adhesive polypropylene film. Near fine. Nobu's restaurants are known the world over for the quality of their ingredients and for the skill and originality with which the food is prepared and presented. Now, in this first cookbook by Nobu to focus on vegetable dishes, the master chef shares his expertise and deep knowledge of Japanese cuisine in sixty recipes that showcase vegetables in all their variety. Throughout the book, the emphasis is on fine and healthy Japanese dining. Nobu uses a wide range of cooking techniques - from marinating and pickling to steaming, roasting, boiling, frying, grating, etc. - to bring out the full flavors and textures of the vegetables. He also introduces tofu and yuba, both traditional Japanese ingredients made from soybeans, and offers ten recipes for vegetable sweets and fifteen for cocktails.
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Morley, John David
Pictures from the Water Trade An Englishman in Japan
Andre Deutsch Ltd., London, 1985.
Octavo; hardcover, with silver-gilt spine titles; 259pp. Minor wear; boards slightly fanned; text block and page edges toned with some spots. Dustwrapper is mildly rubbed and edgeworn; now professionally protected by superior non-adhesive polypropylene film. Very good. "The Water Trade" is the Japanese term for night-clubs, bars, brothels and so on. The Japanese sense of what is proper in any given situation is even stronger than that of the English, and it is not until Boon discovers that it is perfectly proper for a man to be improper when he is out on the tiles that he makes a real friend, the ebullient and witty Ichimonji, and has a real entry into Japanese life.
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Ponting, Herbert G.
In Lotus-Land Japan With 8 Illustrations in Colour and 96 in Monochrome from Photographs by the Author
Macmillan and Co. Ltd., London, 1910.
First edition: quarto; hardcover, with gilt spine and upper board titles and gilt upper board decorations; 395pp., all edges dyed green, with a tipped-in full-colour frontispiece, 7 plates likewise and 96 monochrome and duotone plates. Moderate wear; shaken; spine extremities softened and frayed; boards rubbed with some mild insect damage; endpapers offset; some toning to the plate pages and tissue guards. No dustwrapper. Good to very good.
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Ravina, Mark
The Last Samurai The Life and Battles of Saigo Takamori
John Wiley, Hoboken NJ, 2004.
Hardcover, octavo; black boards with gilt spine titling; 265pp., monochrome illustrations. Owner's name. Minor wear only to lower board edges and mild rubbing to dustwrapper; minimal wear to edges. Near fine. The Last Samurai traces Saigo's life from his early days as a tax clerk in far southwestern Japan, through his rise to national prominence as a fierce imperial loyalist. Saigo was twice exiled for his political activities - sent to Japan's remote southwestern islands where he fully expected to die. But exile only increased his reputation for loyalty, and in 1864 he was brought back to the capital to help his lord fight for the restoration of the emperor. In 1868, Saigo commanded his lord's forces in the battles which toppled the shogunate and he became a leader in the emperor Meiji's new government. But Saigo found only anguish in national leadership. He understood the need for a modern conscript army but longed for the days of the traditional warrior. Saigo hoped to die in service to the emperor. In 1873, he sought appointment as envoy to Korea, where he planned to demand that the Korean king show deference to the Japanese emperor, drawing his sword, if necessary, to defend imperial honour. Denied this chance to show his courage and loyalty, he retreated to his homeland and spent his last years as a schoolteacher, training samurai boys in frugality, honesty, and courage. In 1876, when the government stripped samurai of their swords, Saigo's followers rose in rebellion and Saigo became their reluctant leader. His insurrection became the bloodiest war Japan had seen in centuries, killing over 12,000 men on both sides and nearly bankrupting the new imperial government. The imperial government denounced Saigo as a rebel and a traitor, but their propaganda could not overcome his fame and in 1889, twelve years after his death, the government relented, pardoned Saigo of all crimes, and posthumously restored him to imperial court rank. Saigo's life is a fascinating look into Japanese feudal society and a history of a country as it struggled between its long traditions and the dictates of a modern future.
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Reischauer, Edwin O.
The Japanese
Harvard University Press, Cambridge, 1978.
Octavo hardcover; beige cloth boards with red spine titling, decorated endpapers; 443pp., monochrome illustrations. Mild rubbing to lower board edges; one or two faint marks on text block edges; rubbed illustrated dustwrapper with some wear and scraping to edges and faded spine. Very good. Wrapper now professionally protected by superior non-adhesive polypropylene film with white paper backing. The former United States Ambassador to Japan examines, within their historical and geographical settings, the salient characteristics of contemporary Japanese society, personality, politics, and culture.
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Serizawa, Katsusuke & Maru Kusumi
Clinical Acupuncture A Practical Japanese Approach
Japan Publications Inc., Tokyo Japan, 1988.
Quarto; hardcover, with gilt spine titles; 231pp.,with many monochrome illustrations. Minor wear; a slight stain to the spine heel; previous owner's ink inscription to the flyleaf. Dustwrapper mildly rubbed and edgeworn; now professionally protected by superior non-adhesive polypropylene film. Very good.
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Sugimoto, Etsu Inagaki (Ichiro Hori & Tekisui Ishii, illus.)
A Daughter of the Samurai How a daughter of feudal Japan, living hundreds of years in one generation, became a modern American
Charles E. Tuttle Company Inc., Rutland VT, 1968.
Second printing: octavo; hardcover, full decorative cloth with gilt spine and upper board titles and decorations, and decorative endpapers; 314pp., with a monochrome portrait frontispiece and an illustration likewise. Minor wear; slightly rolled; mildly toned and lightly spotted text block edges; some mild offset to the endpapers. Price-clipped dustwrapper mildly edgeworn with some sunning to the spine pane;, now backed by archival-quality white paper and professionally protected by superior non-adhesive polypropylene film. Very good to near fine. A Daughter of the Samurai tells the true story of a samurai's daughter, brought up in the strict traditions of feudal Japan, who was sent to America to meet her future husband. An engrossing, haunting tale that gives us insight into an almost forgotten age. Madam Sugimoto was born in Japan, not in the sunny southern part of the country which has given it the name of "The Land of Flowers," but in the northern province of Echigo which is bleak and cold and so cut off from the rest of the country by mountains that in times past it had been considered fit only for political prisoners or exiles. Her father was a Samurai, with high ideals of what was expected of a Samurai's family. His hopes were concentrated in his son until the son refused to marry the girl for whom he was destined and ran off to America. After that all that was meant for him fell to the lot of the little wavy-haired Etsu who writes here so delightfully of the things that happened in their childhood days in far-away Japan.
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Tsuji, Shizuo, with Mary Sutherland (Introduction by M.K. Fisher)
Japanese Cooking A Simple Art
Kodansha International, Tokyo Japan, 1980.
Royal octavo; hardcover; 517pp., with 16pp. of colour plates and many monochrome illustrations. Minor wear to dustwrapper edges. Otherwise near fine.
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Wakuda, Tetsuya
Tetsuya - signed
HarperCollins, Pymble NSW, 2001.
Quarto hardcover; black boards with silver gilt spine titling and silver endpapers; 178pp., colour and monochrome illustrations. Signed in ink by the author. Faint spotting to upper text block edge. Otherwise near fine in like dustwrapper. Combining a Japanese philosophy of natural flavours, the freshest Australian produce and traditional French cooking techniques, Tetsuya creates imaginative dishes unparalleled anywhere in the world.
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Yamata, Kikou (Emma Craufurd, trans.)
Three Geishas
Cassell, London, 1956.
Octavo, hardcover; cream boards with red spine titling; 187pp., coloured frontispiece. Binding slightly rolled; offsetting to endpapers, browned and spotted page and text block edges, mild rubbing to board edges and corners. Slightly foxed illustrated dustwrapper with tiny missing segments on spine panel extremities and corners. Very good. Wrapper now professionally protected by superior non-adhesive polypropylene film with white paper backing. Inspired by a post-War need to reassert the role of geisha as something other than merely a prostitute, the author re-tells the stories of three of Japan's most famous geisha and elevates the occupation above the status of whores pandering to the needs of post-Hiroshima US soldiers stationed in Tokyo (to which explicit condition the author feels the occupation has been reduced). These tales of extraordinary women are ancient in Japanese culture and are superbly re-told here.
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