BD. Edmund Blunden

108. ‘Japanese Citizens’, ‘Japanese Outlook’, and ‘Interpreters of Japan’. Reviews of Five Gentlemen of Japan, by Frank Gibney, and Daughter of the Pacific, by Yôko Matsuoka. National and English Review 141 (August 1953): 116-17; Spectator 191 (August 1953): 157l; TLS, 11 September 1953, p. 578.

Blunden reviewed both works twice, Gibney in National and English Review, Matsuoka in Spectator, and both, anonymously, in TLS. In the National and English Review he finds Gibney’s study an ‘excellent interpretation of Japan’ and offers general praise for the Occupation, for ‘whatever its deficiencies and . . . vices . . . its benevolence [has been] great’. In the Spectator he offers kind words for Matsuoka’s autobiography and notes that formerly European and particularly English ‘example and influence’ superseded American influence in Japan, but that a ‘rapid change’ in this matter ‘has occurred and is in progress’. In TLS he praises both works and suggests that ‘unhappy memories’ of the war continue to ‘darken opinions’ about Japan in England, but Gibney, ‘like Americans all round’, has ‘passed beyond the stage of exasperation over the crimes of that desperate and distorted season’.





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