August 7, 1986 |
The 46th Nisei Week Japanese Festival this Friday through Aug. 17 provides a midsummer break and an opportunity to sample the best of an exotic culture. The festival was started by Nisei, or second generation Americans of Japanese ancestry, to honor their ethnic heritage.
April 21, 1987 |
Hitomi Sano ruefully remembers her first day at an American school in Irvine three years ago. When lunchtime came around, the 6-year-old girl from Japan unpacked her favorite meal--a rice ball laced with black seaweed. Her classmates laughed. "I couldn't speak (English), so I was crying," recalled Hitomi, who now speaks English so fluently that she accompanies her mother to parent-teacher meetings to serve as an interpreter.
February 28, 1993 |
It is not often that an American writes a Japanese-style book about Japan. Successful books of this sort are rare indeed. But John Elder has just produced a small masterpiece in the genre. "Following the Brush" is a collection of eight linked essays, all deriving from a remarkable year that Elder and his family spent in Japan. At home, Elder is a professor both of literature and of environmental studies at Middlebury College. As a literary type, he got interested in the poetry of Basho.
November 29, 2013 |
I honestly can't tell what's more disturbing, the fact that Katy Perry dressed up in “ yellowface ” or that anyone thought it was “ beautiful .” Last weekend, the “I Kissed a Girl” singer appeared at the American Music Awards to perform her new single, “Unconditional,” dressed in a kimono. Perry went all the way with borrowing from Japanese culture, writes Vulture: “geisha moves ... giant fans, cherry blossoms, The Great Wave off Kanagawa, and much more.” The Wall Street Journal's Jeff Wang commented that the “performance was also a harsh reminder of how deeply anchored the archetype of the exotic, self-sacrificing 'lotus blossom' is in the Western imagination.” However, Chris Talbott of the Associated Press didn't find anything wrong with it. Talbott responded by saying Perry looked “like a princess out of a classic Japanese painting.” Here we can see that the bigger issue with Perry's “ demeaning and harmful iconography ” is that some people don't see it as an issue - because cultural appropriation has become so commonplace.
March 7, 2013 |
Emotions have been running high at screenings of the historical drama "Emperor. " The Japanese American coproduction, which opens Friday, revolves around the dilemma Gen. Douglas MacArthur faced as he tried to restore order in post-World War II Japan: Should the country's divine leader, Emperor Hirohito, stand trial and face certain death on war crimes charges? When the producers screened "Emperor" recently in Japan, producer Gary Foster said, many men were in tears as they left the theater.
December 13, 2012 |
The five-star view will remain the same, but lots of other changes are planned for Hotel Chinzanso Tokyo when it officially changes its name Jan. 1. The hotel has operated as the Four Seasons Hotel Tokyo at Chinzanso for the last 20 years. Fujita Kanko, the property's owner, is investing $90 million to renovate Hotel Chinzanso Tokyo, which is known for its 16-acre Japanese botanical garden. Chinzanso means “villa on a mountain of camellias.” Among the upgrades are a new rooftop, meeting and event space, and Cafe Foresta, an open-kitchen-style restaurant specializing in sweets. "We possess a truly unique property, an urban resort in a lush garden setting," said Kouichi Urashima, the new general manager and a veteran hotelier.
September 6, 1987 |
A French court has banned a couple from christening their daughter with a Japanese name, court sources said on Saturday. They said a court in the southwestern city of Lyon had ruled a keen interest in Japanese culture was not enough of a reason for the local family to baptize their daughter Keiko. Under French law, a judge can ban parents from giving their children names deemed unsuitable.
September 28, 1986
The CBS movie "American Geisha" was one of the most exquisitely performed and sensitive pictures I have ever seen. Pam Dawber played the title role beautifully. The movie gave me an insight into the Japanese culture. I'd like to thank CBS for broadcasting "American Geisha" and for giving us something other than the "shoot-'em-up" movies with their constant and inevitable chase scenes. Vernice Irwin, Palm Springs
October 13, 2002 |
I went to Japan for the first time. I went with my brother Piet and Billy Shire, who owns the Wacko store in L.A. I wanted to see the two sides of Japan that interest me. The frenetic pop culture side [is] what we did in Tokyo. Shibuya is where all the kids go to be hip and hang out. It's like Melrose Avenue but kicked up. I loved it. We went to Kyoto. That was the other side of Japanese culture, the ancient imperial state of Japan. Our host was a Japanese pop star.