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Martin Laflamme
“True View of Mount Asama” by Ike Taiga
CULTURE
Mar 1, 2024
Ike Taiga's revolutionary act of capturing natural beauty
Idemitsu Museum of Arts showcases the Edo Period painter's realistic landscapes at the first retrospective of his work in Tokyo in 13 years.
Trial participants listen to wartime leader Hideki Tojo give his defiant testimony in the old Army Ministry courtroom during the International Military Tribunal for the Far East in January 1948.
CULTURE / Books
Nov 16, 2023
'Judgment at Tokyo' investigates powers at play in postwar tribunal
Gary J. Bass' new book thoroughly delves into the prosecution of Japanese military atrocities and its divisive legacy.
Japan Times
Books / Reviews
Jul 9, 2023
Today’s regional tensions all come down to that ‘other great game’
Sheila Miyoshi Jager demonstrates in her ambitious and wide-ranging new book that the tensions that developed from the second half of the 19th century reverberate in Asia to this day.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Art
Jun 1, 2023
Paul Jacoulet: The vibrant worldview of an eccentric expatriate
Raised in Tokyo from a young age, the French artist embraced the life of a Japanese creative and sought to reflect the world as he saw it — in all its colorful glory.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Books
May 7, 2023
‘Japanese Yokai and Other Supernatural Beings’: Ghosts and ghouls in all their macabre glory
Ukiyo-e expert Andreas Marks digs deep into the folklore of Japan’s most terrifying creatures, detailing 100 supernatural beings with lavish illustrations.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Art
Jan 7, 2023
Ukiyo-e art brings Chinese literary heroes to life
The new exhibition at the Ota Memorial Museum of Art showcases playful renderings of rogues and warriors from historical stories.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Books
Nov 6, 2022
'Our Man in Tokyo': An ambassador's view of a decade of turbulence
Through diary entries, diplomatic dispatches and firsthand accounts, biographer Steve Kemper explores the pivotal years leading up to World War II from the perspective of Joseph Grew.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Art
Oct 29, 2022
Matsuo Basho's lost travelogue finds its way to Kyoto
A new joint exhibition at two museums complement the poet's travel manuscript, which went missing for half a century, with paintings by Yosa Buson and Ito Jakuchu.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Art
Jun 17, 2022
Shin-hanga and one man's vision to rejuvenate ukiyo-e traditions
A sweeping show containing works by 25 artists who formed the core of the last significant woodblock print movement, championed by one savvy businessman, is currently touring Europe.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Books
Jun 4, 2022
Toshio Watanabe lifts the veil on the bureaucrats who developed Taiwan
Readers will get a clear understanding of what colonial administrators were trying to achieve, but are largely left in the dark as to what the local population thought.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Art
Apr 1, 2022
The Smithsonian unveils Buddhist paragons who put 'Mind Over Matter'
The National Museum of Asian Art in Washington, D.C. displays the breadth of its Zen artifacts, from both Japan and China, for the first time in a new exhibition.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Books
Mar 6, 2022
‘Eleven Winters of Discontent’: The nightmare that began after World War II
Sherzod Muminov's well-researched academic study identifies explanations for Joseph Stalin's decision to intern half a million Japanese prisoners of war in Soviet work camps.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Art
Feb 19, 2022
Tsukioka Kogyo: The man who dedicated his art to saving noh
The ukiyo-e artist's extensive body of work devoted to Japan's oldest living form of theater has gone largely overlooked — until now.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Books
Dec 5, 2021
‘Sesson Shukei’: An artist’s portrait emerges from the shadows
Art historians Frank Feltens and Yukio Lippit shed light on Sesson Shukei, a prominent figure in medieval art whose history has been mostly lost to time.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Books / RECENTLY PUBLISHED BOOKS ABOUT JAPAN
Nov 7, 2021
‘Ogata Korin’: The libertine artist who made beauty his business
Curator Frank Feltens' informative monograph illustrates how the inability of a youthful Ogata Korin to manage his affairs had a profound impact on Japanese art.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Books
Oct 24, 2021
‘North Korea in a Nutshell’: An effective introduction to an enigmatic nation
Ralph Hassig and Kongdan Oh's survey of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea covers the history of the country skillfully, albeit with some gaps in documenting sources.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Art
Sep 11, 2021
Utagawa Kuniyoshi: When censorship strikes, art gets playful
Ota Memorial Museum of Art's two-part exhibition of the woodblock print artist's works reveals his impish sense of humor.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Books
Aug 21, 2021
Philip Jodidio: ‘A willingness to transgress and a desire to be extremely innovative’
u2018Contemporary Japanese Architecture' author Philip Jodidio discusses the past and future significance of Japanese architecture and his career as an art/architecture critic and editor.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Books
Aug 21, 2021
‘Contemporary Japanese Architecture’: Embracing nature and the need for sustainability
Architecture critic Philip Jodidio's new book examines the ingenuity of Japan's architects, particularly in their response to climate change.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Books
Jun 6, 2021
'Prelude to Pearl Harbor': With diplomatic lines drawn and soft power spent, a standoff emerges
Author John Gripentrog looks at the events and attitudes that paved the way to the Second World War in “Prelude to Pearl Harbor: Ideology and Culture in US-Japan Relations 1914-1941.”

Longform

The Japanese government updated its English education guidelines in 2017 to emphasize communication over grammar and memorization. Public school teachers are incredibly busy, however, which means schools haven’t been able to implement changes uniformly. Private and alternative schools are attempting to remedy this.
The language of opportunity: Bilingual education is on the rise in Japan