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Vineland (Classic, 20th-Century, Penguin)
Thomas Pynchon
Tristes Tropiques
John Weightman, Doreen Weightman, Patrick Wilcken, Claude Lévi-Strauss
Richard III
William Shakespeare
The Dwarf
Alexandra Dick, Pär Lagerkvist
The Collected Poems of Wilfred Owen
Wilfred Owen, Cecil Day-Lewis
Labyrinths
Richard Wolin
Giotto to Dürer: Early Renaissance Painting in the National Gallery
Jill Dunkerton, Susan Foister, Dillian Gordon, Nicholas Penny
Michel Foucault: Beyond Structuralism and Hermeneutics
Hubert L. Dreyfus, Paul Rabinow
Gravity's Rainbow
Thomas Pynchon
A Gravity's Rainbow Companion: Sources and Contexts for Pynchon's Novel
Steven Weisenburger
Japan: An Attempt at Interpretation - Lafcadio Hearn This book is a classic, and deservedly so. A journalist and autodidact, a man free of conventional biases of all sorts, it seems… Hearn lived in Japan for 15 years. He taught there and married there – and brought to bear his exquisitely honed powers of observation and sympathetic insight, and his keen intelligence… to the study of a culture that fascinated him to no end. And yet, though under the spell of Japan, he could see it clearly, as often only an outsider can.

The book is written in the highly articulated style of late 19th cen. Letters – where every clause and word betrays an analytical intention…, and so cannot be read too quickly. Its aim is to reveal the essentially archaic nature of Japan, of old Japan – rooted in the ancestral cults of Shintoism – which, despite the rapid modernization that took place after the Meiji Restoration (and there is, in fact, a brilliant discussion of Meiji in the context of the Shinto Revival of the early to mid-19th century)… and which, at its heart, is akin to the pre-Christian worlds of ancient Greece. Indeed, in his discussion of the religion and old ancestral worship of Old Japan, the name of Fustel de Coulanges is everywhere present just below (and sometimes upon) the surface. In the purity of the Japanese mentalité (though formed in their case by the edge of the sword, as he notes), Hearn feels himself nearly immersed in the old Mediterranean air of Sappho and Alcaeus…

This is a marvelous book and, along with Ruth Benedict’s equally controversial Sword and Chrysanthemum, shows just how far the riddle of old Japan (and hence of New Japan) can and must be solved by the old and simple tools of the traditional western anthropologist.