With the advent of postmodernism in Japan from the 1980s, which fostered eclecticism and diverse stylistic practices, interest in the earlier Edo Period (1603-1868) was revived and it subsequently was embraced as a kindred spirit.

Kyoto National Museum's "Ueda Akinari 200th Memorial Retrospective," until Aug. 29, pursues the diversity of the Edo Period's cultural and intellectual life through the remembrance of the author of "Ugetsu Monogatari" ("Tales of Moonlight and Rain"), a popular collection of supernatural tales.

Like the varied artistic and literary circles in which he moved, Ueda Akinari's (1734-1809) own life was one of heady diversity, though to focus on that fails to yield a deeper understanding of the author's principal achievement — writing.