Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Koizumi, but not that Koizumi

Oh Amaterasu, please, not another Lafcaudio Hearn article! And in The New York Times, too!

Maybe someday, before I die, it will stop.

Don't get me wrong, I love Matsue to pieces. I would not mind living there...though if I had to make a choice, I would probably choose Hagi instead...or to be absolutely perverse, Dōgo in the Oki Shotō.

Still, there is little that is newsworthy left in the tale of Lafcaudio Hearn's brief stay on the shores of Shinji-kō. Too many other foreign residents have made far more important contributions to their communities and the country with nary a mention in the international media.

Given Hearn's fading relevance and resonance (a Caucasian male who lived in Japan, really dug traditional Japanese culture, married a Japanese woman and took up Japanese citizenship! Wow, how unusual!), Matsue's city fathers and mothers maybe, just maybe, need to figure out how to move beyond the fixation upon the peculiar resident of that little house.

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