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Outstanding books, now available in English

Published by: JPIC | Hardcover |
ISBN 978-4-916055-44-6
248 pages | 210mm (h) x 148mm (w) | March 2015


If There Were No Japan

A Cultural Memoir

Roger Pulvers


About the Book

An award-winning writer and translator who has immersed himself in Japanese culture for half a century delivers a firsthand account of the country’s customs and the profound changes occurring in contemporary Japanese society.


Originally published in Japanese, If There Were No Japan: A Cultural Memoir was acclaimed for its insights into Japanese life, bringing together aspects of history, culture and everyday life to paint an original and revealing portrait of the Japanese people and the pressing issues facing them today. This national bestseller was hailed as a roadmap for “innovation of the mind”—essential knowledge that could guide Japan out of the economic and psychological doldrums that have held sway for the past two decades.


During his decades of passionate engagement with Japan, Pulvers became close friends with many of the most gifted writers, filmmakers, actors and journalists in the country. Whether delving into ancient traditions or providing vivid accounts of contemporary customs, analyzing characters in Japanese fiction or recounting personal encounters with individuals, the author illuminates those inventive elements that have made Japanese culture and design the envy of the world — and that signal a way forward into the 21st century.


“Roger Pulvers’s life reads like an adventure story. His recollections of life in Japan in the 1960s are bound to become a part of Japan’s national heritage.”
—Ryuichi Sakamoto, musician and composer


“This book is a delight. Few Japanese intellectuals have absorbed Japanese culture to the extent that Pulvers has. If there were no Pulvers, Japan would be a much less interesting country!”
—Seigo Matsuoka, editor, author and professor


“Roger Pulvers … is a master at transcending borders. He builds a convincing case for Japan as an indispensable presence on the world stage.”
—Mitsuyoshi Numano, author and professor at the University of Tokyo


“Roger Pulvers delves into and examines values that the Japanese have lost sight of. His notion that there is much diversity in Japan refutes the conventional wisdom with great persuasiveness.”
—Yoshiharu Fukuhara, Honorary Chairman, Shiseido

About the Author

Roger Pulvers is an acclaimed author, playwright, theater director, translator and journalist. He has published more than forty books in Japanese and English and received the Kenji Miyazawa Prize in 2008 and the Noma Award for the Translation of Japanese Literature in 2013. He currently divides his time between Sydney, Australia and Japan.

Published by: JPIC | Hardcover |
ISBN 978-4-916055-44-6
248 pages | 210mm (h) x 148mm (w) pages | March 2015