Aino Folk Tales

Aino Folk Tales

Basil Hall Chamberlain

The Ainu are an ethnic minority in Japan, living primarily on the northernmost Japanese island of Hokkaidō. This is a collection of tales from their culture. Stories include, The Loves of the Thunder-Gods, Why Dogs cannot speak, The Owl and the Tortoise, The Man who Married the Bear-Goddess, The Man who was changed into a Fox, and The Rat Boy.

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Ancient Tales and Folk-lore of Japan

Ancient Tales and Folk-lore of Japan

Richard Gordon Smith

With 62 color illustrations. This is a collection of 57 historical legends and folktales from Japan. Nearly all of them are set in a well-defined time and place, instead of ‘once upon a time.’ Themes include ghosts; unrequited love across social boundaries; Shinto landscape, tree and ocean spirits; and tales driven by Bushido and Buddhist ethics. Chapters include: The Golden Hairpin; The Spirit Of The Willow Tree…

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The Book of Tea

The Book of Tea

Okakura Kakuzo

The Book of Tea is a long essay linking the role of tea (teaism) to the aesthetic and cultural aspects of Japanese life. Addressed to a western audience, it was originally written in English and is one of the great English tea classics.

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Bushido, The Soul of Japan

Bushido, The Soul of Japan

Inazo Nitobe

Bushido: The Soul of Japan written by Inazo Nitobe is, along with the classic text Hagakure by Tsunetomo Yamamoto, a study of the way of the samurai. A best-seller in its day, it was read by many influential foreigners, among them President Theodore Roosevelt, President John F. Kennedy and Robert Baden-Powell. It may well have shaped Baden-Powell’s ideas on the Boy Scout movement he founded.

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The Creed of Half Japan

The Creed of Half Japan

Arthur Lloyd

This is a scholarly study of the evolution of Mahayana Buddhism in Japan. Chapters include; Mahāyāna; The Stage on which S’akyamuni made his Appearance; The Buddha and his Greatest Disciple; The Pre-Christian Expansion of Buddhism; Pusityamitra; The New Testament in Touch with the East; Alexandria and Antioch at the Time of Christ…

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Genji Monogatari

Genji Monogatari

Murasaki Shikibu

Genji Monogatari, or the Tale of Genji, is a classic work of Japanese fiction from the tenth century. Written by a noblewoman, Lady Murasaki, Genji is a milestone in world literature. It is a gateway into the courtly life of 10th century feudal Japan, during the Heian period. It has been called the first novel, and the writer, Lady…

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The Gist of Japan

The Gist of Japan

R. B. Peery

Roughly the first half of this book is actually about Japan; the people, the religions, the way of life, etc. Then the second half turns into some kind of manual for Christian missionaries, with chapters on overcoming the problems of building churches, qualifications needed to be a missionary and a brief history of the missions in Japan.

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Gleanings in Buddha-Fields

Gleanings in Buddha-Fields

Lafcadio Hearn

This is a wonderful collection of Lafcadio Hearn’s essays on Buddhism, Japan, and Japanese folklore. Chapters include: A Living God; Out Of The Street; Notes Of A Trip To Kyôto; Dust; About Faces In Japanese Art; Ningyô-No-Haka; In Ôsaka; Buddhist Allusions In Japanese Folk-Song; Nirvana, A Study In Synthetic Buddhism; The Rebirth Of Katsugorô; and, Within The Circle.

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Glimpses of Unfamiliar Japan, Vol 1

Glimpses of Unfamiliar Japan, Vol 1

Lafcadio Hearn

Chapters include, My First Day In The Orient; The Writing Of Kobodaishi; Jizo; A Pilgrimage To Enoshima; At The Market Of The Dead; Bon-Odori; The Chief City Of The Province Of The Gods; Kitzuki: The Most Ancient Shrine In Japan; In The Cave Of The Children’s Ghosts; At Mionoseki; Notes On Kitzuki; At Hinomisaki; Shinju; Yaegaki-Jinja, and Kitsune.

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A Handbook of Colloquial Japanese

A Handbook of Colloquial Japanese

Basil Hall Chamberlain

As the title says, this is a learning tool for those wishing to learn colloquial Japanese. Chapters cover Pronunciation and Letter Changes, nouns, pronouns, post-position, numerals, adjectives, verbs, and syntax. It also includes short phrases and easy questions and answers.

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A Hundred Verses from Old Japan

A Hundred Verses from Old Japan

William N. Porter

Each poem is illustrated in this edition with an 18th century Japanese woodcut. This is a collection of 100 specimens of Japanese Tanka poetry collected in the 13th Century C.E., with some of the poems dating back to the 7th Centry. These little gems are on themes such as nature, the round of the seasons, the impermanence of life, and the…

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The Ideals of the East

The Ideals of the East

Okakura Kakuzo

This is a short but very concise introduction to Asian art. Written from a Japanese perspective, and focusing on Japanese art, one of the major themes is the relationship between spirituality, particularly Buddhism, and the evolution of Asian art.

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In Ghostly Japan

In Ghostly Japan

Lafcadio Hearn

A collection of ghostly stories from Lafcadio Hearn. Images of ghosts and goblins, touches of folklore and superstition, salted with traditions of the nation. While some of these stories contain ghosts and monsters, others are not ghostly or ghastly at all. ‘Bits of Poetry’ offers an engaging study on verse, and ‘Japanese Buddhist Proverbs’ explains…

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Japan, An Attempt at Interpretation

Japan, An Attempt at Interpretation

Lafcadio Hearn

An early Western attempt to decipher the ‘outward strangeness’ of all things in Japan, and to place the nation and its people in a larger historical context. This is a lyrical work, singing with respect and love, written by someone who truly made himself part of Japan and its culture.

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Japan, From the Age of the Gods to the Fall of Tsingtau

Japan, From the Age of the Gods to the Fall of Tsingtau

Frederick Hadland Davis

Chapters include: The Ainu, and the Coming of the Japanese; The Age of the Gods; From Jimmu to Jingo; From Ojin to Senkwa; The Coming of Buddhism; The Fujiwara and the Nara Period; The Wars of the Gem-Pei; Two Famous Warriors; Hideyoshi and the Korean Wars; Nobunaga and Christianity; and, The Dutch Traders and Will Adams.

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