Sunday, March 27, 2016

Live in Tokyo, Sat., 4/2: JAPANAMERICA / MONKEY talk, reading, signing @ KINOKUNIYA

Books Kinokuniya Event

Culture Update: "Japanamerica" Next

WHEN: April 2nd, Saturday 2016
TIME: 3:00 PM -
PLACE: 6th floor, event space Books Kinokuniya Tokyo
Event is free, no pre-registration necessary

Ten years have gone by since the publication of the bestseller "Japanamerica: How Japanese Pop Culture Has Invaded the US", one of the most popular texts on contemporary Japanese culture. With this book as the centerpiece, we hope to have a discussion on popular texts before and after "Japanamerica" to paint a landscape of Japanese contemporary culture today. The speakers are writer Roland Kelts, the author of "Japanamerica", and Benjamin Boas, the author of "Nihon no kotowa Manga to Game de Manabimashita (Everything I Learned, I Learned from Manga and Games)", who are both Tokyo residents and know pop culture inside and out!
Roland Kelts is the author of the acclaimed bestseller, Japanamerica: How Japanese Pop Culture has Invaded the US. He is a Steering Committee Member of the Rebuild Japan Initiative Foundation, a Tokyo-based think tank.
He writes for many publications, including The New Yorker, Time magazine, Newsweek Japan, The New York Times, The Guardian and The Japan Times, and his fiction has appeared in Zoetrope: All Story, Playboy, A Public Space and others. Recently, Kelts gave talks at the World Economic Forum in China and for TED in Tokyo. He is a contributing editor of Monkey Business International, the annual English edition of a Japanese literary magazine, and his forthcoming novel is called Access.

Monday, March 21, 2016

Bringing Britain to Japan, for The Japan Times

In Japan, Western culture usually means American products: hot dogs, hamburgers, Starbucks and Krispy Kreme donuts, and recent boutique outlets like Blue Bottle Coffee and the Dominique Ansel bakery — not to mention the nearly 50,000 United States military personnel still stationed across the archipelago.

The rest of the West, especially Europe, is often relegated to second-tier status. A bistro here, a trattoria there — a chain of quasi-pubs for ex-pats and tourists. While hipster Japanese may find European culture superior to American consumerism, its presence remains sparser.

British entrepreneur Dan Chuter is out to change that, at least as it applies to his homeland. Against economic odds, Chuter believes that genuine British culture can find a home in 21st-century Japan.