Dogs and Demons: Tales from the Dark Side of Japan by Alex Kerr

By Alex Kerr

A superb evaluation of the mess ups and successes of contemporary Japan.

In Dogs and Demons, Alex Kerr chronicles the various aspects of Japan's contemporary, and protracted, crises -- from the failure of its banks and pension money to the decline of its as soon as wonderful smooth cinema. he's the 1st to provide an entire document at the nation's endangered surroundings -- its shores covered with concrete, its roads resulting in nowhere within the mountains -- in addition to its "monument frenzy," the destruction of previous towns equivalent to Kyoto and building of drab new ones, and the attendant cave in of its vacationer undefined. Kerr writes with humor and keenness, for "passion," he says, "is a part of the tale. thousands of eastern consider as heartbroken at what's going as I do. My jap associates inform me, 'Please write this -- for us.'"

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Every morning, in the elevator of the Asahi building, Yamazaki cannot escape an obligatory round of hieratic bows and salutations as he recognizes his bosses or fellowemployees. In his relations on the newspaper, and with business acquaintances, he exercises a circumspection and a consciousness of rank and position that no American or European of his views and status would think of. He would like Japan to have a real system of social equality, without these shadings of position that dominate every Japanese social circle.

The Emperor is the institution which gives a moral sanction to the contracts and stamps the web society with a seal of permanence. Japanese have never believed that he was a "God" in the Western sense. " This does not imply obvwus superhuman powers. It bases itself on a faith that the Emperor, descending in an unbroken line from the founders of Japan, who were gods, expresses the principle that Japan is a divinely inspired nation with a divine mission. It insists that the Emperor, as a result, can do no wrong.

The poor and oppressed were moved by its insistence on the absolute equality of all men. Jesuits preached to the outcasts, the landless peasants and the slaves.

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