- 139,00 kr
"This portrait of Japanese country life reminds us that at its core, a happy and healthy life is based on the bonds of food, family, tradition, community, and the richness of nature" —John Einarsen, Founding Editor and Art Director of Kyoto Journal
What would it be like to move to Japan, leaving everyone you know behind, to become part of a traditional Japanese household? At Home in Japan tells an extraordinary true story of a foreign woman who goes through an amazing transformation, as she makes a move from a suburban lifestyle in California to a new life, living in Japan. She dedicates 30 years of her life as a housewife, custodian and chatelaine of a 350–year–old farmhouse in rural Japan.
This astonishing book traces a circular path from were Rebecca began, to living under Japanese customs, from the basic day to day details of life in the house and village, through relationships with family, neighbors and the natural and supernatural entities with which the family shares the house. Rebecca Otowa then focuses on her inner life, touching on some of the pivotal memories of her time in Japan, the lessons in perception that Japan has taught her and the ways in which she has been changed by living in Japan.
An insightful and compelling read, At Home in Japan is a beautifully written and illustrated reminiscence of a once simple life made extraordinary.
For almost three decades I have been the housewife, custodian, and chatelaine of a 350-year-old farmhouse in rural Japan, writes Otowa in her informative and delightfully illustrated memoir. In 1978, American-born Otowa came to Japan as a university student, filled with an exaggerated confidence in my paltry store of knowledge, undercut with a pervading suspicion that I didn't know as much as I thought I did. Four years later she married into a traditional Japanese family. The short but engaging chapters (none is longer than four pages) explore one aspect of her adopted life. But like any good essayist, Otowa wanders into wider country. In Comfort, she recounts the snuggly family comforts obtained from the continued use of the traditional kotatsu, a low table with a blanket or quilt spread over it and a heating device inside. In Sweets, she delves into the complex obligations attached to the painstakingly shaped, delicately colored, beautifully presented and ritually consumed edible forms. And in Bamboo, Otowa reveals the special spot, exotic as a unicorn, and as common as mud, the plant holds in her heart. Filled with personal insights garnered from years spent learning to fit into a radically different culture, Otowa gently illuminates what it means to discover your identity in a foreign land.