December 01, 2013
Many years ago, a remarkable woman delivered the keynote address at a congress of the International Board of Books for Young People. I got hold of the text of her speech by chance and found it inexplicably beautiful. I was profoundly moved by her words.
October 30, 2013
In my early 20s, I single-handedly raised my baby. Then, when I was pushing 60--which was only a few years ago--I did the same thing again with a new child.
September 25, 2013
In a house in Osaka where my father was born and grew up, there was a small room with three framed photographs on display. One was that of Emperor Hirohito in a military uniform. The other two were of my two uncles, also in uniform, who died "hero's deaths" on the islands of Attu and Luzon during World War II.
September 07, 2013
The heat pushed the mercury near 40 degrees, and a chorus of singing cicadas bellowed from the dense growth of trees. I was on a visit back to Japan, and on this day before my return to Beijing, I visited Yasukuni Shrine in Tokyo's Kudankita district.
August 17, 2013
“Kaze Tachinu” (The Wind Rises), the latest animated film written and directed by Hayao Miyazaki, was released in theaters across Japan on the day before the July 21 Upper House election. I saw it at a packed theater near Tokyo’s Ginza district, but I did not notice any children in the audience. That’s quite unusual for a Miyazaki film.
POINT OF VIEW/ Nobuyoshi Sakajiri: Chen Guangcheng's thoughts on democratization on 'beautiful island'
July 25, 2013
Lightning accompanied the rain--an oft-occurring evening shower in the subtropics during this season--that would not stop.
July 17, 2013
I attended a preview of a documentary film titled "Rikkoho" (Standing for an election). The moment the theme music kicked in at at the end of the movie, tears began to stream down my face. When was the last time I cried like this? Not in years.
June 27, 2013
"Sayonara Hanryu" (Goodbye, the Korean Wave) by Minori Kitahara is an absolutely delightful book. It is about South Korean pop culture that has swept many Japanese women off their feet, including the author herself.
June 15, 2013
The gold-plated sign on a building a stone's throw from Tiananmen Square in Beijing makes clear that ordinary Chinese have no business there.
May 30, 2013
In April, I gave my first seminar of the new academic year at the university where I teach. But less than 50 percent of the class turned up. This is because students who expect to graduate next spring are now busy looking for jobs.
May 17, 2013
Earthquake survivors, holding placards made of cardboard, were seen skirmishing with hastily dispatched government officials around noon on April 22, two days after a magnitude-7.0 seismic event rocked the southwestern Chinese province of Sichuan.
May 08, 2013
My new assignment bounced me from Tokyo to Hong Kong. Spoken Cantonese is unintelligible to me, but at least I can guess the meaning of Chinese characters.
May 04, 2013
China now has an evangelist of "dreams"--none other than Xi Jinping, who was formally anointed as president in mid-March.
April 27, 2013
Philosopher Shunsuke Tsurumi once wrote: "Having been told of the nation's defeat in World War II during the summer holiday of 1945, the hearts of schoolteachers were heavy as they headed to school on September 1, the first day of the autumn term. They now had to teach their pupils the opposite of what they had been teaching.
April 18, 2013
In a farming village in China's Shanxi province, a place with vast stretches of dry yellow earth, I visited a woman they call "huohuashi," a living fossil.
March 30, 2013
I was watching a frankly dull documentary on YouTube when my vision suddenly blurred. God forbid, my eyes were tearing up!
March 25, 2013
As I dove into the interior of the 10-meter-tall parade float with the giant puppet eagles atop, I could only see a skeleton of steel pipes, the lining of fabric wrapped around its exterior and sheets of plywood.
POINT OF VIEW/ Nobuyoshi Sakajiri: Sino-Japanese cooperation still suffocating over China's air pollution
March 17, 2013
When I looked out the window one morning, light snow was falling. It was Feb. 25. The day before, Feb. 24, was Jan. 15 according to the lunar calendar, the day of the Lantern Festival. That night the firecrackers and fireworks marking the end of the Spring Festival (Chinese New Year) enveloped Beijing in thick smoke, although this winter the air would have been suffocating enough without it, due to serious air pollution.
March 07, 2013
Rap, as I assume you all know, is a form of pop music characterized by rhyming lyrics, chanted or spoken rapidly to an instrumental or synthesized beat.
March 02, 2013
News reports of a death sentence for a woman who was routinely subjected to domestic violence before killing her husband is causing an uproar in China.