lamdha books -
Catalogue of Japanese poetry, drama and prose

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Akiko, Yosano (Dennis Maloney & Hide Oshiro, trans.)
Night Fading to Pale Rose
White Pine Press, Fredonia NY, 1986.
Landscape duodecimo; paperback, stapled booklet; 20pp. Mild wear; some insect damage to the front cover. Very good. Limited edition of 500 copies.
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Blyth, R.H.
Japanese Life and Character in Senryu
Hokuseido Press, Tokyo, 1960.
First edition. Hardcover, octavo; beige cloth boards with black spine titling and small blind-stamped insignia on rear board; 630pp., colour frontispiece with tissue-guard and 17 colour and b&w plates all with tissue-guards, decorated endpapers, in plain cardboard mailer with spine and upper board titles and publisher's bird insignia on lower board. Minor wear; mild toning and spotting to text block, faint offsetting to endpapers. Illustrated beige dustwrapper mildly sunned along the spine panel; light wear to edges with slight scraping at corners and spine panel extremities; now professionally protected by superior non-adhesive polypropylene film with white paper backing. Very good to near fine. Tightly fitting mailer.
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Kirkwood, Kenneth
Renaissance in Japan A Cultural Survey of the Seventeenth Century. Japan's Literary Giants: Basho, Saikaku, Chikamatsu
Tuttle, Rutland, 1971.
Hardcover, octavo; green cloth boards with gilt spine titling; 414pp. Mildly toned and faintly marked text block edge; slight offsetting to endpapers. Illustrated cream dustwrapper with small tear on upper front corner. Very good. Wrapper now professionally protected by superior non-adhesive polypropylene film.
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Kitasono, Katue
Black Rain Poems and Drawings
The Divers Press, Palma de Mallorca Spain, 1954.
Landscape octavo; paperback; unpaginated (28pp.), with colour decorations and 2 plates. Minor wear. Some mild sunning to the dustwrapper. Very good.
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Komparu, Kunio
Noh The Noh Theatre - Principles and Perspectives
John Weatherhill Inc., New York NY & Tokyo Japan, 1983.
First edition: octavo; hardcover, in plum silk with silver-gilt spine-titling and an upper board decoration, with laid paper endpapers; 376pp. with many monochrome illustrations. Minor wear; text block edges lightly toned. Dustwrapper very lightly rubbed and edgeworn; now professionally protected by superior non-adhesive polypropylene film. Very good to near fine. This is probably not the first book the neophyte turns to for an introduction to the Noh, but it should certainly be the second. This book has great depth; it is neither a general introduction nor a technical study though it partakes of both. With the enthusiasm of a passionate amateur and the knowledge of a thorough professional, the author places this 'theatre of the mind' against a truly formidable background embracing such fields as modern physics, urban studies, architecture, psychiatry and Western dance, drama and music.
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LaFleur, William R.
The Karma of Words: Buddhism and the Literary Arts in Medieval Japan
University of California Press, Berkeley, 1986.
Octavo paperback. 204pp. Minor wear only; very good to near fine. The Karma of Words is a study of Buddhist ideas in Japanese literature from the early Heian period down to the seventeenth century. It attempts to describe 'the arc of Japan's medieval experience', but consists of largely independent chapters on particular themes, works and genres. In his introduction LaFleur suggests that 'medieval Japan' be defined as 'that epoch during which the basic intellectual problems, the most authoritative texts and resources, and the central symbols were all Buddhist'. Japanese Buddhist writings were didactic, 'argumentative and insistent' at the beginning and end of the period, when they were facing rival ideological systems, and more subtle in between. They exhibit an ambivalence about the Buddhist symbolic tradition and 'a strong conflation of the religious and literary dimensions of human experience'. The first work considered is the early Heian Nihon ryoi-ki, which presents bluntly didactic explanations of anomalies ('miracles') using the Buddhist system of karma and the cycle of rokudo. This illustrates the threat of despair and four approaches to escaping the cycles: through the infiltration of bodhisattvas such as Kannon and Jizo, by transcending them, as in the 'Western Paradise' of Pure Land Buddhism, by postulating their interpenetration, as in Tendai, or through a ludic or game-playing approach, as in Zen.Turning to mujo or impermanence, LaFleur analyses the tropes/topoi of the hermit's hut and the traveller's inn, in works by Chomei and others. In some ways these were opposed, but both can be contrasted with settled people in stable houses, the first with impermanent housing, the second with moving people. Japanese literature shaped by Confucian values or even pre-Buddhist values may celebrate the overwhelmingly attractive sense of security provided by one's own domicile, but an orthodox Buddhist position would be that both inn and hermitage are more closely in harmony with the real structure of the universe. Looking at 'depth' in poetry and the aesthetic of yugen, LaFleur focuses on Tendai Buddhism, and the Lotus Sutra in particular, and its use in a treatise on poetry by Fujiwara Shunzei. This is radically non-dualist and non-Platonist: parables are not just pointers to an underlying reality, but attempt a breakdown of the divide between observer and observed, between phenomena and interpretation. LaFleur concludes with an analysis of a short passage from Basho's Narrow Road to the Far North, in which Basho writes down thoughts on the etymology of the Chinese character for 'chestnut'. This links to the 8th century seer Gyogi and the 12th century poet Saigyo, providing a trajectory which LaFleur uses to highlight the gradual rather than radical introduction of 'modernity' in Japanese thought. There are references in The Karma of Words to Kuhn, Foucault, and so forth but it makes no attempt to impose any theoretical, rather than historical, framework. It proceeds rather by the close reading of texts in their intellectual contexts. In this it goes into quite some density of detail, but it is never dull and is presented in such a way that it can be enjoyed by those without much knowledge either of Buddhist ideology or Japanese literature. - from Danny Yee's review
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Mishima, Yukio (Alfred H. Marks, trans.)
Forbidden Colours
Martin Secker & Warburg Ltd., London, 1968.
First UK edition: octavo; hardcover, with silver-gilt spine-titling; 403pp. Moderate wear; mild offset to endpapers with tape mark on front endpaper; toned and spotted text block edges with some insect damage to top edge. Chipping to dustwrapper spine panel extremities and corners; now backed by archival-quality white paper and professionally protected by superior non-adhesive polypropylene film. Bookseller's sticker, Good to very good.
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Oe, Kenzaburo (Philip Gabriel, trans.)
Atlantic Books, London, 2003.
Octavo; hardcover, with gilt spine-titling and decorated endpapers; 570pp. Minor wear. Dustwrapper slightly crumpled along upper edge (now professionally protected by superior non-adhesive polypropylene film). Very good.
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Oe, Kenzaburo (trans. Deborah Boliver Boehm)
Death by Water
Grove Press, New York, 2015.
First edition. Octavo hardcover; 424pp. Dustwrapper. Remainder. New.
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Philippi, Donald (ed. & trans.) (Kuzunishi Sosei, illus.)
This Wine of Peace, This Wine of Laughter A Complete Anthology of Japan's Earliest Songs
Mushinsha Grossman, New York NY, 1968.
Royal octavo; hardcover; 236pp., with many monochrome illustrations. Minor wear; a few faint spots on the text block edges. Slightly worn dustwrapper; a tiny tear to the top edge of lower panel. Very good. Poetry antedating influences from the Chinese mainland. Notes and commentary.
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Saikaku, Ihara (William Theodore de Bary, trans.)
Five Women Who Loved Love Amorous Tales from 17th Century Japan
Charles E Tuttle Co., Rutland VT, 1958.
Reprint: octavo; hardcover, quarter bound in cloth; 264pp., with monochrome illustrations. Mild wear; previous owner's name; chipping and rubbing to board edges; toned and spotted text block edges. Rubbed dustwrapper with mild edgewear and a few marks and spots; professionally protected by superior non-adhesive polypropylene film. Very good.
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Tanizaki, Junichiro (Anthony H. Chambers, trans.)
The Secret History of the Lord of Musashi & Arrowroot Two Novellas
Secker & Warburg, London, 1983.
First UK edition: octavo; hardcover; 199pp. Mild wear; lightly toned text block edges with spotting on upper edge. Slightly scuffed dustwrapper with lightly worn edges and corners; inner flaps spotted; now professionally protected by superior non-adhesive polypropylene film. Very good to near fine.
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