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KIMONO. Text and photos by Paul van Riel, introduction and comments by Liza Dalby. Leiden: Hotel Publishing, 144 pp., color photos, $49.95.

It comes in module units, like tatami, and this implies a certain interchangeability, not only among the kimono but also among the wearers. Also it is structurally unisexual. A member of the 1852 Russian Japan Expedition wrote that upon hearing the swish of skirts “you look up and are disappointed.” I do not know what that implies.

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