Japanese History
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Tokyo: A Biography: Disasters, Destruction and Renewal: The Story of an Indomitable City
Tokyo: A Biography: Disasters, Destruction and Renewal
The Story of an Indomitable City
Paperback      ISBN: 4805313293
The history of Tokyo is as eventful as it is long. A concise yet detailed overview of this fascinating, centuries-old city, Tokyo: A Biography is a perfect companion volume for history buffs or Tokyo-bound travelers looking to learn more about their destination.

In a whirlwind journey through Tokyo's past from its earliest beginnings up to the present day, this Japanese history book demonstrates how the city's response to everything from natural disasters to regime change has been to reinvent itself time and again. A calamitous fire results in a massive expansion of the city's territory. A debate over the Samurai code creates far-reaching social change. A malleable boy becomes the figurehead for powerful forces which change an ancient feudal society into a modern industrialized power within a generation. Utter destruction wipes the slate clean again so Tokyoites may start all over. And so it goes.

Tokyo's story is riveting, and by the end of Tokyo: A Biography, readers see a city almost unrivaled in its uniqueness, a place that--despite its often tragic history--still shimmers as it prepares to face the future.
The Book of Five Rings: A Classic Text on the Japanese Way of the Sword
The Book of Five Rings
A Classic Text on the Japanese Way of the Sword
Paperback      ISBN: 1590302486
The Book of Five Rings is one of the most insightful texts on the subtle arts of confrontation and victory to emerge from Asian culture. Written not only for martial artists but for anyone who wants to apply the timeless principles of this text to their life, the book analyzes the process of struggle and mastery over conflict that underlies every level of human interaction.

The Book of Five Rings was composed in 1643 by the famed duelist and undefeated samurai Miyamoto Musashi. Thomas Cleary's translation is immediately accessible, with an introduction that presents the spiritual background of the warrior tradition. Along with Musashi's text, Cleary translates here another important Japanese classic on leadership and strategy, The Book of Family Traditions on the Art of War by Yagyu Munenori, which highlights the ethical and spiritual insights of Taoism and Zen as they apply to the way of the warrior.
Secrets of the Japanese Art of Warfare: From the School of Certain Victory
Secrets of the Japanese Art of Warfare
From the School of Certain Victory
Hardcover      ISBN: 0804847835
This samurai strategy books is the first widely available English translation of Yamamoto Kansuke's classic treatise on strategy and tactics.

Secrets of the Japanese Art of Warfare is Thomas Cleary's translation of the seminal writings attributed to Yamamoto Kansuke on Japanese martial arts and military service. A mysterious man of humble origins, Yamamoto distinguished himself in the service of the redoubtable Takeda Shingen. Yamamoto was a career soldier and founder of the so-called school of certain victory, from which the famous Miyamoto Musashi (The Book of Five Rings) emerged. His school developed the art of discerning situational combat advantage so that a warrior was able to commit to action only when success was virtually assured.

Translated and accompanied with helpful insights by Thomas Cleary, one of the foremost translators of the martial wisdom of Asia, this book is for all persons engaged in military, law enforcement, or emergency response, as well as for martial artists, athletes, business executives, diplomats and politicians.
Tokyo Vice: An American Reporter on the Police Beat in Japan
Tokyo Vice
An American Reporter on the Police Beat in Japan
Paperback      ISBN: 0307475298

A riveting true-life tale of newspaper noir and Japanese organized crime from an American investigative journalist.

Jake Adelstein is the only American journalist ever to have been admitted to the insular Tokyo Metropolitan Police Press Club, where for twelve years he covered the dark side of Japan: extortion, murder, human trafficking, fiscal corruption, and of course, the yakuza. But when his final scoop exposed a scandal that reverberated all the way from the neon soaked streets of Tokyo to the polished Halls of the FBI and resulted in a death threat for him and his family, Adelstein decided to step down. Then, he fought back. In Tokyo Vice he delivers an unprecedented look at Japanese culture and searing memoir about his rise from cub reporter to seasoned journalist with a price on his head.
Encyclopedia Japanese Pop Culture
Encyclopedia Japanese Pop Culture
Paperback      ISBN: 0834803801

In the West, Japanese culture comes in the form of Power Rangers, Godzilla movies, and Sanrio products, but of course the indigenous pop culture is much richer. Rather than focus on what the rest of the world has already encountered, Mark Schilling provides an encyclopedic compendium of books, movies, music, comedians, and cultural scandals that have had the greatest impact in Japan. Thus, for the outsider, The Encyclopedia of Japanese Pop Culture is an insider's guide to post-war Japan. Not content to simply catalog his entries, Schilling provides real depth and analysis in his articles, opening up Japan's rich pop heritage to the world at large.

Japan's Cultural Code Words
Japan's Cultural Code Words
Trade Paperback      ISBN: 4805311045
Yokohama Yankee: My Family's Five Generations as Outsiders in Japan
Yokohama Yankee
My Family's Five Generations as Outsiders in Japan
Paperback      ISBN: 0984457666

"A lovely, unsettling family story and a vivid traversal of modern Japanese history that will impress the jaded Japan scholar and inspire the curious general reader or memoir fan." -- Library Journal

Helm was the Tokyo correspondent for the Los Angeles Times when he realized that the majority of the articles he had written were "critical of Japan in some way." This was surprising considering Helm was born in Japan and is part Japanese himself. In this lovingly researched memoir, he sifts through five generations of Helms living in Japan...history buffs will relish Helm's painstaking detail and impressive command of the material. -- Publishers Weekly

"Yokohama Yankee is a marvelous and eloquent work of family history. What makes it more remarkable is this family's history also sheds light on the political, economic, cultural, and racial interactions and tensions between Japan and the United States for more than a century and a half, right up to the present day. This is a humane and insightful book that will be read many years from now." -- James Fallows, national correspondent for The Atlantic and author of China Airborne

"Like a sword cleaving a bittersweet fruit, Leslie Helm's saga of his mixed-blood family in Japan cuts to the inescapable isolation of being white in a country where blood still means so much. Yokohama Yankee is a painfully intimate story that spans more than a century and brings the wrenching history of modern Japan into a focus that is both razor sharp and deeply human." -- Blaine Harden, author of Escape from Camp 14 and former Tokyo bureau chief of The Washington Post


"Leslie Helm has written a lively and engaging account of his remarkable family history and its intertwining with Japan ... It is a warm and human story that will charm its readers." -- Kenneth B. Pyle, Henry M. Jackson professor of Asian history and Asian studies, University of Washington, and recipient of Japan's Order of the Rising Sun


"One of the finest correspondents to have reported on Japan, Leslie Helm tells the riveting, sometimes painful story of his multinational, biracial merchant family. Living in Yokohama for generations in war and peace, the Helms are at the heart of Japan's long modern history without ever actually becoming 'Japanese.'" -- Sheldon Garon, Nissan professor of Japanese history at Princeton University


"Helm mines the many treasures of his family's past, and the multicultural futures of his adopted, Japanese children, to investigate the mysteries of identity that are locked away inside all of us. The family fortune disappears, and relatives scatter in the winds of war and reconstruction. But this lovely story remains, about an erudite man trying to make sense of the world, of the past, and of himself." -- Alex Beam, Boston Globe columnist


" A] wonderful work full of pathos, insight and humanity." -- Fred G. Notehelfer, emeritus professor of Japanese history at UCLA and author of Japan Through American Eyes: The Journal of Francis Hall, 1859-1866


Leslie Helm's decision to adopt Japanese children launches him on a personal journey through his family's 140 years in Japan, beginning with his great-grandfather, who worked as a military advisor in 1870 and defied custom to marry his Japanese mistress. The family's poignant experiences of love and war help Helm overcome his cynicism and embrace his Japanese and American heritage.


This is the first book to look at Japan across five generations, with perspective that is both from the inside and through foreign eyes. Helm draws on his great-grandfather's unpublished memoir and a wealth of primary source material to bring his family history to life.

Ninja Attack!: True Tales of Assassins, Samurai, and Outlaws
Ninja Attack!
True Tales of Assassins, Samurai, and Outlaws
Paperback      ISBN: 4805312181
Ninja Attack introduces dozens of unforgettable real-life ninja straight out of the annals of Japanese history--many of whom are all but unknown outside their home country.

Ninja masters. Solo assassins and operatives. Femme fatales as deadly as they were beautiful. Swordfighters out of legend. And the Shogun and warlords who commanded them. Each individual in this graphic novel is profiled with a full-page manga-style drawing and a dossier brimming with top-secret information, including photos, anecdotes, and dramatic stories of the individuals in action.

The book covers ninja clothing styles, the types of weapons that were used, ninja tools, ninja tricks of the trade, and the basics of the ninja diet. It also includes a do-it-yourself tour of ninja related spots in modern Tokyo.

Ninja Attack is everything you always wanted to know about ninja but were too afraid you'd get a shuriken in the eye to ask.

Legendary ninja covered in this book include:
  • Prince Shotoku
  • Mochizuki Chiyojo
  • Hattori Hanzo
  • Matsuo Basho
  • Mamiya Rinzo
  • Jiraiya

Book 2 of 3 in the Yokai Attack series. Others include Yokai Attack and Yurei Attack .
Japan: Reports from an Enigmatic Land
Japan
Reports from an Enigmatic Land
Paperback      ISBN: 3765816248
The Chrysanthemum and the Sword
The Chrysanthemum and the Sword
Paperback      ISBN: 0618619593

Essential reading for anyone interested in Japanese culture, this unsurpassed masterwork opens an intriguing window on Japan. Benedict's World War II-era study paints an illuminating contrast between the culture of Japan and that of the United States. The Chrysanthemum and the Sword is a revealing look at how and why our cultures differ, making it the perfect introduction to Japanese history and customs.