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Georges Bigot and Japan, 1882-1899: Satirist, Illustrator and Artist Extraordinaire

Georges Bigot and Japan 1882-1899 Satirist Illustrator and Artist Extraordinaire

Compiled and Edited by Christian Polak with Hugh Cortazzi

ISBN: 978-1-898823-75-9


Published - April 2018

Incorporating over 250 illustrations, this is the first comprehensive study in English of French artist and caricaturist George Ferdinand Bigot (1860-1927) who, during the last two decades of the nineteenth century, was renowned in Japan but barely known in his own country. Even today, examples of his cartoons appear in Japanese school textbooks.


British Foreign Secretaries and Japan, 1850-1990: Aspects of the Evolution of British Foreign Policy

British Foreign Secretaries and Japan 1850-1990 Aspects of the Evolution of British Foreign Policy

Edited by Antony Best and Hugh Cortazzi

ISBN: 978-1-898823-73-5


Published - June 2018

This book reviews the role of British Foreign Secretaries in the formulation of British policy towards Japan from the re-opening of Japan in the middle of the nineteenth century to the end of the twentieth century. It also takes a critical look at the history of British relations with Japan over these years.


Culture, Power and Politics in Treaty-Port Japan, 1854-1899. Key Papers, Press and Contemporary Writings

Culture Power and Politics in Treaty-Port Japan 1854-1899 Key Papers Press and Contemporary Writings

J.E. Hoare (ed.)

ISBN: 978-1-898823-61-2


Published - October 2018

This two–volume collection, supported by an in-depth introduction that addresses origins, actuality, endgame and afterlife, brings together for the first time contemporary documentation and more recent scholarship to give a broad picture of Japan’s Treaty Ports and their inhabitants at work and play in the second half of the nineteenth century. The material selected, shows how the ports’ existence and the Japanese struggle to end their special status, impacted on many aspects of modern Japan beyond their primary role as trading stations


The Japanese and German Economies in the 20th and 21st Centuries. Business Relations in Historical Perspective

The Japanese and German Economies in the 20th and 21st Centuries Business Relations in Historical Perspective

KUDO Akira

ISBN: 978-1-898823-69-8


Published - April 2018

Supported by a number of high-profile case studies, this volume offers a comprehensive exploration of Japanese-German economic relations through the whole of the twentieth and beginning of the twenty-first centuries. It also offers clarification on the structure and processes of the world economy in the same period.


China's Naval Operations in the South China Sea

Chinas Naval Operations in the South China Sea

Bruce Elleman

ISBN: 978-1-898823-67-4


Published - October 2017

This highly topical book examines the evolving perception of the People’s Republic of China’s (PRC) of the South China Sea (SCS), and Beijing’s accompanying maritime strategy to claim them, particularly in the context of the strategies of the neighbouring stake-holding nations. In addition to long-standing territorial disputes over the islands and waters of the SCS, China and the other littoral states — Vietnam, the Philippines, Brunei, Malaysia, Taiwan, and Indonesia — have growing and often mutually exclusive interests in the offshore energy reserves and fishing grounds.


Isabella Bird and Japan. A Reassessment

Isabella Bird and Japan A Reassessment

Kiyonori Kanasaka [Translator: Nicholas Pertwee]

ISBN: 978-1-898823-51-3


Published - June 2017

This book places Bird’s visit to Japan in the context of her worldwide life of travel and gives an introduction to the woman herself.  Supported by detailed maps, it also offers a highly illuminating view of Japan and its people in the early years of the ‘New Japan’ following the Meiji Restoration of 1868, as well as providing a valuable new critique on what is often considered as Bird’s most important work


A.B. Mitford and the Birth of Japan as a Modern State. Letters Home

AB Mitford and the Birth of Japan as a Modern State Letters Home

Robert Morton

ISBN: 978-1-898823-48-3


Published - July 2017

Drawing on his (unpublished) letters to his father, this new study on A.B. Mitford focuses for the first time on his life in Japan from 1866 to 1870 and examines the part he played during one of the great turning points in world history: the 1868 revolution that saw the demise of Japan’s 250-year feudal dynasty ruled over by a Shogun and its replacement by a modern state – the so-called Meiji Restoration


Consul in Japan, 1903-1941. Oswald White's Memoir 'All Ambition Spent'

Consul in Japan 1903-1941 Oswald Whites Memoir All Ambition Spent

Hugo Read (ed.)

ISBN: 978-1-898823-64-3


Published - July 2017

Here is a rare first-hand account by a foreigner living and working in Japan in the first half of the twentieth century which provides a unique insight into this important period of Japan’s history, and complements the existing archival material. Beginning life as a student interpreter, he went on to become an assistant in Korea, Vice-Consul in Yokohama and Osaka, Consul in Nagasaki and Dairen, then Consul-General in Seoul, Osaka, Mukden and Tientsin.


A Unique Banchado. The Documentary Painting, with Commentary, of King Jeongjo's Royal Procession to Hwaseong in 1795

A Unique Banchado The Documentary Painting with Commentary of King Jeongjos Royal Procession to Hwaseong in 1795

Han Young-woo

ISBN: 978-1-898823-49-0


Published - July 2017

Fully illustrated in colour, here is the first introduction in English to one of Korea’s outstanding cultural assets – the banchado (‘painting of the order of guests at a royal event’) relating to all those taking part (1800 people) in the eight-day royal procession to Hwaseong ( Gyeonggi Province ) organized by King Jeongjo in 1795 in order to visit the tomb of his father and to celebrate his mother’s sixtieth birthday.  


Wars and Rumours of War, 1918-1945. Japan, the West and Asia Pacific. Selected Contemporary Readings on Crises and Conflict. Series 2: 1937-1945: From Manchuria to Tokyo Bay

Wars and Rumours of War 1918-1945 Japan the West and Asia Pacific Selected Contemporary Readings on Crises and Conflict Series 2 1937-1945 From Manchuria to Tokyo Bay

Roger Buckley (ed.)

ISBN: 978-1-898823-63-6


Published - February 2017

Supported by an in-depth Introduction and contextual analysis, this six-volume set complements Series I (1918-1937 – From Armistice to North China), addressing the history between 1938 and1945. Despite the widespread operation of war-time censorship and surveillance, publishers in the West and, to a lesser degree in East Asia, put out a range of material that remains of considerable value to later generations. Some of the texts selected are undeniably partisan but the quantity of the published material (and to some extent its quality) left the general public with a vast and varied archive of printed matter  that deserves to be consulted and debated by today's researchers and students. Greater attention is given to American and British literature rather than Chinese or Japanese simply by virtue of the practical realities.

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The State of the Japanese State: Contested Identity, Direction and Role

The State of the Japanese State Contested Identity Direction and Role

Gavan McCormack

ISBN: 978-1-898823-71-1


Published - June 2018

In this his latest work, Gavan McCormack argues that Abe Shinzo’s efforts to re-engineer the Japanese state may fail, but his radicalism continues to shake the country and will have consequences not easy now to predict.   The significance of this book will be widely recognized, particularly by those researching contemporary world politics, international relations and the history of modern Japan.


Carmen Blacker. Scholar of Japanese Religion, Myth and Folklore. Writings and Reflections

Carmen Blacker Scholar of Japanese Religion Myth and Folklore Writings and Reflections

Hugh Cortazzi with James McMullen and Mary-Grace Browning (eds)

ISBN: 978-1-898823-56-8


Carmen Blacker was an outstanding scholar of Japanese culture, known internationally for her writings on religion, myth and folklore – her most notable work being The Catalpa Bow: A Study of Shamanistic Practices in Japan . Importantly, a third of  the volume comprises significant extracts from the author’s diaries covering a period of more than forty years, together with a plate section drawn from the her extensive photographic archive , thus providing a rare opportunity to gain a personal insight into the author’s life and work.    


Japanese Studies in Britain. A Survey and History

Japanese Studies in Britain A Survey and History

Hugh Cortazzi and Peter Kornicki (eds)

ISBN: 978-1-898823-58-2


Published in association with the Japan Society, London

This book takes an in-depth look at the study of Japan in contemporary Britain, highlighting the many strengths but also pointing out some weaknesses, while at the same time offering a valuable historical record of the origins and development of Japanese Studies in British universities and other institutions.    


Anjin - The Life and Times of Samurai William Adams, 1564-1620. As Seen Through Japanese Eyes

Anjin - The Life and Times of Samurai William Adams 1564-1620 As Seen Through Japanese Eyes

Hiromi T. Rogers

ISBN: 978-1-898823-22-3


This is a highly readable account of Adams’ voyage to and twenty years in Japan, told for the first time from a Japanese perspective, and  enriched  by detailed observations of Japanese culture and society at this time. New light is shed on Adams’ relations with the Dutch and his countrymen, including the disastrous relationship with Captain John Saris, the key role likely to have been played by the munitions, including cannon, removed from Adams’ ship De Liefde in the great battle of Sekigahara (September 1600), as well as the shipbuilding skills that enabled Japan to advance its international maritime ambitions. This is the real story that inspired James Clavell’s Shogun


Britain & Japan: Biographical Portraits - Vol X

Britain amp Japan Biographical Portraits - Vol X

Hugh Cortazzi (ed.)

ISBN: 978-1-898823-44-5


Published in association with the Japan Society, London

This tenth volume in the series, comprising a total of sixty-nine essays, offers a further wide-ranging selection of  portraits and themes that celebrate the life and work of men and women, both British and Japanese, whose contributions are worthy of being remembered in the history of Anglo-Japanese relations.  Here, the portraits of key figures range from Sir Stamford Raffles in the nineteenth century to Lisa, Lady Sainsbury in more recent times


The History of Manchuria, 1840-1948. A Sino-Russo-Japanese Triangle

The History of Manchuria 1840-1948 A Sino-Russo-Japanese Triangle

Ian Nish

ISBN: 978-1-898823-42-1


The History of Manchuria, 1840-1948 is the first fully researched and documented history of its kind, representing a significant benchmark in scholarly studies of the region. In this his long-awaited final major work, Ian Nish provides valuable new perspectives on the turbulent times suffered by the three north-eastern provinces of China, generally called ‘Manchuria’, in the course of the last two centuries.


Wars and Rumours of War, 1918-1945. Japan, the West and Asia Pacific. Selected Contemporary Readings on Crises and Conflict. Series 1: 1918-1937: From Armistice to North China

Wars and Rumours of War 1918-1945 Japan the West and Asia Pacific Selected Contemporary Readings on Crises and Conflict Series 1 1918-1937 From Armistice to North China

Roger Buckley

ISBN: 978-1-898823-24-7


Wars and Rumours of War brings together a wide selection of contemporary English-language primary material in order to illustrate how authors from both Asia and the West saw contemporary events. For the first time, this new series makes available books, journal essays and periodical articles, many of which may be absent from standard bibliographies, with a view to widening debate and underlining the diversity of opinion that was available to contemporary audiences in Asia and beyond who were  anxious to follow developments as they unfolded.

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The Abe Experiment & the Future of Japan. Don't Repeat History

The Abe Experiment amp the Future of Japan Dont Repeat History

Junji Banno & Jirō Yamaguchi [Translated by Arthur Stockwin]

ISBN: 978-1-898823-21-6


With an author’s Foreword written on the day that the Abe cabinet decided to ‘revise the  Japanese Constitution by reinterpretation’ (Tuesday, 1 July 2014), this timely examination of Japan’s post-war history by two leading historians committed to democratic politics is highly challenging and prompts serious reflection by anyone concerned with the future of Japan. 


My Shanghai, 1942-1946. A Novel

My Shanghai 1942-1946 A Novel

Keiko Itoh

ISBN: 978-1-898823-23-0


It is 1942. Shanghai after Pearl Harbor. Newly-arrived Eiko Kishimoto, a twenty-year-old, London-educated Japanese housewife, settles into a privileged existence in the French Concession as a member of the community of the Occupying Power. Initially, her days are filled with the rich fare of high society life, amidst an ebullient, cosmopolitan community that makes up Shanghai.


Cantankerous Essays. Musings of a Disillusioned Japanophile

Cantankerous Essays Musings of a Disillusioned Japanophile

Ron Dore

ISBN: 978-1-898823-19-3


After six decades following developments in Japanese society, economy and culture and as a well-known ‘leftie’ – the author describes the evolution of his cognitive and evaluative/emotional perceptions of Japan, and explains why he can no longer be described as a ‘Japanophile’.  To which are added essays on more general issues of the present day, such as events in the Ukraine, Iran and Israel, the ‘Piketty boom’, Japan and China, Japan and North Korea and the ‘new Cold Wars’


The Growing Power of Japan, 1967-1972. Analysis and Assessments from John Pilcher and the British Embassy, Tokyo

The Growing Power of Japan 1967-1972 Analysis and Assessments from John Pilcher and the British Embassy Tokyo

Hugh Cortazzi (ed.)

ISBN: 978-1-898823-14-8


Sir Hugh Cortazzi who was to follow in John Pilcher’s footsteps, has compiled the defining reports to Whitehall from Pilcher’s time in Tokyo – resulting in an invaluable record of Japan’s progress at this important point in her post-war history, as well as providing unique insights into the activities, hopes and expectations of the British government in her dealings with Japan. Pilcher was appointed British Ambassador to Japan in 1967 and brought to his role a particular understanding of Japanese civilization together with a critical analysis of Japanese attitudes and way of life.  

 [Published in association with the Japan Society, London]


An Image of the Times. An Irreverent Companion to Ben Jonson's Four Humours and the Art of Diplomacy

An Image of the Times An Irreverent Companion to Ben Jonsons Four Humours and the Art of Diplomacy

Nils-Johan Jorgensen

ISBN: 978-1-898823-17-9


Here is a witty and learned literary excursion into the world of humour and comic literature as revealed inter alia by the works of Shakespeare, Ben Jonson, Oliver Goldsmith and Henry Fielding – leading in the second half to some glorious insights and observations provided by the author’s life experience in the world of diplomacy. It is a rich and fascinating mix of literary idiom, the theatre of the absurd and the comic element of the human condition.


Magnolia. A Novel

Magnolia A Novel

Agnita Tennant

ISBN: 978-1-898823-18-6


Here is an extraordinary love story that speaks to the crisis of separation and scorn, love and hate, following the Korean War ceasefire in July 1953. Four years later, Sukey, a graduate with much promise, falls in love with Kwon, a man who confesses to having been a North Korean spy. Although hostilities are over, enmity towards the North is the social norm and deeply entrenched.  With anti-spy campaigns, street searches, and arrests of any suspect, citizens are urged to be vigilant and to report on any suspicious goings-on.


Rhythms, Rites and Rituals. My Life in Japan in Two-step and Waltz-time

Rhythms Rites and Rituals My Life in Japan in Two-step and Waltz-time

Dorothy Britton

ISBN: 978-1-898823-17-9


Including  a description of her survival as a small child in Japan’s Great Kanto Earthquake of 1923, this book is an enthralling account of the late Dorothy Britton’s life, loves and experiences in an amazingly varied life and career. Amusing episodes and stories of fascinating people and relationships abound in the book, as do valuable insights into topics such as the post-war Occupation and its impact on everyday life, the role of women, learning Japanese, marriage customs, food and many other aspects of Japanese culture and society.


Britain & Japan: Biographical Portraits - Vol IX

Britain amp Japan Biographical Portraits - Vol IX

Hugh Cortazzi (ed.)

ISBN: 978-1-898823-11-7


Published in association with the Japan Society, London


Olonkho. Nurgun Botur the Swift

Olonkho Nurgun Botur the Swift

Platon A. Oyunski

ISBN: 978-1-898823-08-7


Like Homer’s Iliad and Odyssey , the Finnish Kalevala , the Buryat Geser , and the Kirghiz Manas , the Yakut Olonkho (declared In 2005 by UNESCO to be ‘A Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity’) is in this case an epic dating back to the ninth century – when the ancestors of the present-day Yakut peoples lived on their former homeland and closely communicated with the Turkic and Mongolian peoples of the Altay and Sayan regions. 


Across the Three Pagodas Pass. The Story of the Thai-Burma Railway

Across the Three Pagodas Pass The Story of the Thai-Burma Railway

Yoshihiko Futamatsu

ISBN: 978-1-898823-07-0


This is a translation of the only known detailed account of the building of the notorious 262-mile-long Thai-Burma Railway by one of the Japanese professional engineers who was involved in its construction.


My Korea. 40 Years Without a Horsehair Hat

My Korea 40 Years Without a Horsehair Hat

Kevin O’Rourke

ISBN: 978-1-898823-09-4


A  fascinating and highly personal introduction to Korea. Part memoir, part miscellany, it introduces traditional and contemporary Korean culture through a series of essays, stories, anecdotes and poems. Confucianism, Buddhism, relationships, everyday living, language and literature are comprehensively covered.



Tales of Enshin, the Reluctant Samurai. Stories of Old Japan. Book 2

Tales of Enshin the Reluctant Samurai Stories of Old Japan Book 2

Roald Knutsen

ISBN: 978-1-898823-03-2


Torii Enshin was the son of a high-ranking warrior in the late-fifteenth century and a skilled swordsman. He was disturbed at the sad lives of the common people and became a priest. He intended to devote his life to healing the poor who suffered everywhere in war-torn Japan. But then found himself reluctantly having to use his samurai skills once again…


Tales of the Samurai. Stories of Old Japan. Book 1

Tales of the Samurai Stories of Old Japan Book 1

Roald Knutsen

ISBN: 978-1-898823-02-5


Written by the pen of a high-ranking swordsman who has immersed himself in the warrior traditions of old Japan for over fifty years and author of several books relating to the Samurai culture and its traditions, here are some absorbing short tales supported by the author’s own illustrations that will take the reader directly back to both ancient and medieval Japan.


Tokyo Commute. Japanese Customs and Way of Life Viewed from the Odakyu Line

Tokyo Commute Japanese Customs and Way of Life Viewed from the Odakyu Line

A. Robert Lee

ISBN: 978-1-898823-06-3


A unique take on modern life in Japan’s capital city. A Japan of trains, everyday to and fro, carriage scenes and theatre, vistas from the window, advertising posters. Each to be savoured through a specific Tokyo line – the Odakyu. Pitched as creative text and line-graphics, Tokyo Commute: Japanese Customs and Way of Life Viewed from the Odakyu Line offers on-track and off-track observations.


Four Days in January. A Letter to Jillsan

Four Days in January A Letter to Jillsan

Nils-Johan Jorgensen

ISBN: 978-1-898823-01-8


This is a modern tale, a journey of the heart, a road back, revisiting many cities and enduring Eastern and Western sentiments to light and lighten our understanding of life’s fleeting appearance. It is a way of honouring the life of a loved one, to tell a personal story that reflects the shared, universal truth of the silence of loss from Kakimoto to Goethe and beyond.