BAMBOO IN JAPAN, by Nancy Moore Bess, with Bibi Wein. Tokyo and New York: Kodansha International, 2001, 224 pp., 160 color prints and duo-tone photographs, 5,800 yen.

Bamboo, the ancient, ubiquitous grass, is everywhere in Japan. Of the over 1,500 species worldwide, nearly half are found here. It is very much a part of the history and culture of the country; as Basil Hall Chamberlain noted early on, “So extensive is the part played by bamboo in the Japanese domestic economy that the question is rather, what does it not do?”

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