Sunday, 31 January 2016


Japan receives less coverage than China in Poul Anderson's works.

"The Shrine for Lost Children" is set in Japan.

Time Patrol members, Stephen and Helen Tamberly, holiday in archaic Japan. When Stephen is stranded in South America in 2937 BC, he becomes the Vesselmaker and produces the Valdivia ware so that he will be found by a time traveler investigating this mysteriously Japanese-like pottery.

Anything else?

I would love to include a reference to Japanese food but cannot think of any.

Addendum: I did not forget Trygve Yamamura for long and expected to find a comment about him when I switched the computer back on. The blog is always a work in progress.


Sean M. Brooks said...

Yaor, Paul!

You beat me to mentioning Trygve Yamamura, titular hero of Poul Anderson's three mystery novels featuring him. He had a Japanese father and Norwegian mother, as we know.


David Birr said...

Paul and Sean:
The Survey group that made first contact with Ythrians, in "Wings of Victory," included a Eurasian woman with a Japanese given name, Yukiko Sachansky. Aside from her unintentionally causing friction between two of the other Survey crew, PA gave her the final lines that summed up Terran admiration of Ythrian flight.

Flandry, in *The Game of Empire*, referred briefly to an Imperial era called "the Second Sugimoto," saying it was not as paranoid a time as Gerhart Molitor's reign. Comparatively easy-going, then, the Sugimoto dynasty, or at least its second reign, MAY have been enlightened in other respects....

The viewpoint character of "Gibraltar Falls" is Thomas Nomura. He shows no sign of being CULTURALLY Japanese that I recall.

Sean M. Brooks said...

Hi, David!

Aw, drat! I completely forgot about Yukiko Sachanski, "the Second Sugimoto," and Thomas Nomura. Yes, these were persons or times related one way or another to Japan. And I'm going to look up THE GAME OF EMPIRE later for Flandry's comments.

I'm assuming the Sugimoto refers to an earlier period of Japanese history, before the military dictators called shoguns rose to power.


Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor ,Paul and David!

Here's another Japan themed item I found among the works of Poul Anderson: "Rokuro," which can most conveniently be read in ALL ONE UNIVERSE (Tor Books: 1996). To quote from Anderson's prefatory comments: "I have also suggested that as other cultures adopt modern scientific technology, they will not thereby become mere copies of the West. Certainly that has been the case so far. Traditions, whole ways of living, thinking, and feeling, have enduring strength. They can survive, sometimes underground, to rise anew after centuries. It could happen beyond Earth, too. With that in mind, I have attempted to write a No play of the future."

And, a warning note I would make is that NOT ALL cultures who adopt a modern scientific technology are likely to be either good or merely tolerable. The resurgence in jihadist fanaticism within Islam in recent decades and the threat posed by a soon to be nuclear armed Iran ruled by fanatical anti-Western Shia millennialists is merely one example. A problem compounded by a pathetically feeble US and West unwilling to accept that not everyone with modern technology are going to accept the better Western values on matters like the limited state and the rights of the individual.


Anonymous said...

Kaor, Paul!

Anderson appreciated JPanese culture, and it shows in his work, as you and others have mentioned. There is also a spaceman from a Japanese-descended colony in THE ENEMY STARS, and a mention of a starship's Captain Yoshida in A WORLD NAMED CLEOPATRA, as well as the alien Brob in "The Napoleon Crime," one of the Hoka stories, who is smitten with Japanese culture, and plans to remake his garden on his home planet based on Japanese inspiration; he also performs a tea ceremony, although the tea turns to steam, since his body is hot, running off nuclear energy.

Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Nicholas!

I'm FRUSTRATED that I did not remember the Japanese descended spaceman in THE ENEMY STARS and Brob's fascination with Japanese culture (in "The Napoleon Crime," as you pointed out). Drat, darn, and fiddlesticks!!! (Smiles)

Hmmm,and I think Paul mentioned how Brob might be of a species which might have evolved on a high gravity, highly energetic and radioactive planet of the kind we see in MIRKHEIM.


Paul Shackley said...

It is exactly as in MIRKHEIM.