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Alumni Travel Reading: Insider's Japan


People sitting at teahouse edge overlooking trees

Kyoto, by Moyan Brenn

Great East Japan Disasters, March 2011

Aftermath of tsunami with buildings destroyed and rubble in shallow water


Natori, Miyagi, by ChiefHira, via Wikimedia Commons


The 3/11 (March 2011) earthquake, tsunami, and reactor meltdown in northeast Japan reverberated through the nation, and continues to impact life today, including in politics and energy policy, community revitalization efforts, activism, and cultural works.

No Man's Zone official trailer

Read a review of the flm from the Berlin Film Review

Insider's Japan

Mt. Fuji, by non-euclidean photography

Japan is rich with culture and history that becomes amplified  with captivation when personally adventuring through the nation. Offering visitors the best of all ends of the spectrum, Japan allows travelers to relax during a serene walk through many of their colorful gardens and ancient paths, challenge Mt. Fuji on an unparalleled hike, and enjoy their proclaimed "geek life," within the district exemplifying the country's video-game and anime culture. In addition, visitors can explore history in real-time with the exploration of Hiroshima, and immersing oneself in past and present Japanese culture and customs.


Selected and Annotated By:

Molly Des Jardin
Japanese Studies Librarian

For more information, visit the Penn Alumni Travel Website.

Geek Culture

Tall buildings covered in neon and billboards at night

Akihabara District at Night, by IQRemix

Traveling to the Countryside

Japanese History

Glimpses of Unfamiliar Japan

Read this book online through

Underground Tokyo

tokyo from the mori art museum, by non-euclidean photography

Enjoy Japan's Natural Beauty

windmill and tulips

Netherlands in Japan, by Agustin Rafael Reyes

Foreigners' Travels in Old Japan

Black and white portrait of Lafcadio Heam

Lafcadio Hearn, by Frederick Gutekunst, via Wikimedia Commons

These books offer accounts of travelers to Japan as it was modernizing in the late 1800s, providing valuable evidence of the ways in which early modern Japan was existing alongside Western influences. They give an interesting picture of Japanese daily life and customs in a time period vastly different from present day Japan.

Tokyo Sonata

Preview Tokyo Sonata at Youtube

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