Wrong About Japan: A Father's Journey with His Son (英語) ペーパーバック – 2005/9/1
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In a stunning memoir-cum-travelogue Peter Carey charts this journey, inspired by Charley's passion for Japanese Manga and anime, and explores his own resulting re-evaluation of Japan. Although graphically violent and disturbing, the two mediums are both inherently concerned with Japan's rich history and heritage, and hold a huge popular appeal that crosses the generations. Led by their adolescent guide Takashi, an uncanny mix of generosity and derision, father and son look for the hidden puzzles and meanings, searching, often with comic results, for a greater understanding of these art forms, and for what they come to refer to as their own 'real Japan'. From Manhattan to Tokyo, Commodore Perry to Godzilla, kabuki theatre to the post-war robot craze, Wrong about Japan is a fascinatingly personal, witty and moving exploration of two very different cultures.
"'The mysteries of Japan and father-son relationships prove to be rich subjects, especially for a writer at the peak of his powers, and they make for an entertaining and uplifting book.' Sunday Times 'Fast-paced, readable and highly entertaining.' Sunday Express"商品の説明をすべて表示する
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Young Charley Carey, much taken with Japanese comics, tells his novelist dad: "When I grow up I'm going to live in Tokyo." Peter Carey thus arranges a trip for them to Japan, promising his son that they will try to avoid the touristy temples, tea ceremony and Kabuki, instead seeing what his son calls "the real Japan."
Mr. Carey of course has many misconceptions of the Japanese as they of him. What is so wonderful and entertaining about the Carey adventures is that the young people usually get things right. Charley has a new friend Talashi whom he has met on the internet back in New York. These two young people are light-years of the adults in this often amusing clash of cultures. Things get a little dicey-- at least for the father-- when Charley and he encounter their first transexual otaku--one simplistic definition of an otaku is a person so obsessed with something to the point that he or she has few personal relationships-- and Carey wants to be sure that his son isn't freaking out.
"It's okay," he [Charley] said. "I get it."
"Are you cool?"
"Dad, we live in the West Village."
One of my favorite sections of this short book covers how Charley, after many breakfasts, lunches and dinners of fish, miso soup, seaweed, pickles, sushi, sour pickled plums, rice, etc. finally had had enough of being politically correct and convinced his dad to go with him to a Japanese Starbucks for a breakfast of American doughnuts. It reminded me of a Malaysian lunch I had once in Hong Kong-- after many days of eating only Chinese-- that was the worst meal I have ever eaten. That evening my friend and I made a beeline to an American-style restaurant where we gorged ourselves on pasta and tomato sauce, garlic bread and iced tea. The ugly American lives.
This book, even with its several illustrations, is quite short and probably would have been just as effective as a long essay in THE NEW YORKER magazine. In these crazy times don't we all need to hear more about the love of a father for his son? I would be totally surprised to learn that Mr. Carey is not a good dad. His affection for his young son seeps through on every page of WRONG ABOUT JAPAN.