Thursday, March 17

Letters from Tokyo

The media coverage of the Japan horror has been relentlessly bleak for obvious reasons. It's profoundly terrifying. But the New York Times ran a few essays today—by Japanese authors in translation, reflections on their country and their fellow Japanese—that have allowed a little sunlight in, however small a pinprick. In an essay called "Amid Shortages, A Surplus of Hope," renegade author Ryu Murakami—himself an often relentlessly bleak writer—allows himself some optimism. And in his essay "For a Change, Proud to be Japanese," Hiroki Azuma finds that an exciting strength is gathering among his fellow citizens amid the fearsome (and seemingly endless) calamity around them.

I highly recommend both of these pieces.

日本人は がんばって!

The above poster is available here from Signalnoise, and all proceeds will go to Japan disaster relief.