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Learning to Bow: An American Teacher in a Japanese School par [Feiler, Bruce]
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Descriptions du produit

Revue de presse

“A refreshingly original look at Japan…this book is a revelation.” (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

“A hilarious and revealing book [that] marks the debut of a formidable talent.” (James Fallows, Washington Editor of Atlantic Monthly)

“Always fascinating and often funny…one of those rare books that shows the Japanese as fully rounded human beings.” (Washington Post)

“Mark Salzman fans and other aficionados of things Eastern will love…Bruce Feiler’s Learning to Bow.” (Elle)

“Gems of insight and understanding.” (Rocky Mountain News)

“An engaging book, Learning to Bow earns higher marks than the usual scholarly analysis.” (Business Tokyo)

“Filled with rich anecdotes that tell far more than dry, academic tomes on the same subject.” (Seattle Post-Intelligencer)

“A charming and incisive close-up of the most important part of the Japanese miracle- the making of a Japanese.” (Robert Elegant, author of Pacific Destiny)

“As fascinating an account of Japanese life as you could find anywhere…Don’t miss this one.” (Grand Rapids Press)

Présentation de l'éditeur

Learning to Bow has been heralded as one of the funniest, liveliest, and most insightful books ever written about the clash of cultures between America and Japan. With warmth and candor, Bruce Feiler recounts the year he spent as a teacher in a small rural town. Beginning with a ritual outdoor bath and culminating in an all-night trek to the top of Mt. Fuji, Feiler teaches his students about American culture, while they teach him everything from how to properly address an envelope to how to date a Japanese girl.

Détails sur le produit

  • Format : Format Kindle
  • Taille du fichier : 579 KB
  • Nombre de pages de l'édition imprimée : 338 pages
  • Editeur : William Morrow; Édition : Reprint (13 octobre 2009)
  • Vendu par : Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Langue : Anglais
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) 3.9 étoiles sur 5 80 commentaires
52 internautes sur 57 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 A glimpse into Japan of the late 1980's 16 janvier 2002
Par Zack Davisson - Publié sur
Format: Broché
The primary strength of this book is the writing style. Unlike many books about Japanese culture, this book is funny and "living." The book contains a series of anecdotes, each one focusing on a particular experience that Bruce S. Feiler had during his stay. The stories are written as first-person memoirs, and cover such broad topics as Hiroshima and Nagasaki to how to date a Japanese girl. The writing is clever and engaging.
The only thing I felt this book was lacking was an update of some sort. Written about 11 years ago, "Learning to Bow" is about Japan during the "bubble economy." Japan has gone through severe economic and societal changes since then, and I wonder how much of the information is still current. Surely, with the JET program in full swing for several decades now, the presence of foreigners is not such a surprise anymore. Also, the place of women has gone through some significant changes since this book was written.
Still, anyone planning a long-term stay in Japan should read this book. It is fun, insightful and has great tips for climbing Mt. Fuji.
44 internautes sur 49 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 This is how it really is 22 janvier 2001
Par James R. Hoadley - Publié sur
Format: Broché
Bruce Feiler was one of the first participants on the JET program, a program sponsored by the Japanese government to bring foreign young people to Japan for the purposes of education and "internationalization." While Feiler's experiences are a little unusual, in that he can already speak Japanese when he arrives and the events at his school are rather dramatic, overall his story reflects the life of a typical JET program participant. The culture shock, the unbending bureaucracy, the complex and often disaffected attitudes of students, the instant celebrity and lack of privacy that goes with it, are all symptoms that JETs experience. I read the book and often found myself nodding in agreement, having experience the same events and feelings myself. If you want to have an intimate look at the world of education in Japan today, Feiler's book is an excellent place to start. If you are thinking about joining the JET program, this book is a must, along with Importing Diversity.
17 internautes sur 18 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Interesting read, but dated and exaggerated. 25 avril 2006
Par MMac - Publié sur
Format: Broché
As one who logged a few years teaching in Japan around the same era, the subject matter certainly interests me, and this is an interesting study of Japanese culture and the experience of AETs as existed in the late 1980s.

However, the book is a bit dated and I don't know how accurate of a portrayal it'd be for those interested in the Japan teaching experience of today. During the author's experience, the JET program was in its early years and gaijin in the classrooms was still a novelty. In the last 20 years or so, however, an entire generation has grown up accustomed to native english teachers and encounters with foreigners no longer prompt the level of surprise, ignorance, and curiosity portrayed by this author. Also, this book was written at the apex of Japan's bubble economy, and SO many of the attitudes, beliefs and opinions expressed in the book about Japan and its future are the product of that era, circumstances that have obviously changed dramatically in the years since the bubble burst.

Also found parts to be exaggerated. As one example, the author repeatedly informs us of what a rural backwards hamlet he was assigned to, I believe at one point even alleging that most people in his town had never seen a foreigner before him. I found these descriptions dubious: in reality Tochigi contains about 2 million people, is located in the most populous region of Japan on the outskirts of the Kanto plain right next to Tokyo, and contains sites like Nikko that attract thousands of foreign tourists every year. It is hardly the inaka backwoods outpost depicted in this book.

Also found it a bit odd the way the author seemed intent on avoiding mentioning that he was actually just a teacher in the JET Programme, which is well-known and imports thousands of new young english teachers every year to serve in public schools throughout Japan. Instead, he described his job in vaguely pretentious terms along the lines of "I was selected by Japan's Ministry of Education", as if to imply that he alone was some sort of specially selected ambassador.

Nonetheles, despite having aired these pet peeves, I must admit that I still enjoyed the read because it brought me back to an earlier much enjoyed time in my life. I'd recommend the read to Japan "has beens" like myself, but not necessarily to those seeking an accurate portrayal of today's Japan teaching experience.
18 internautes sur 21 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
1.0 étoiles sur 5 Inside the heart of a big yawn, more like 11 janvier 2008
Par J. Emde - Publié sur
Format: Broché
Many of the previous reviews have pointed out Mr Feller's haughty condescension but what really makes his book a drag is how breathtakingly boring it is. Naked with other men in a hot spring bath? Good gracious me! As another reviewer pointed out, anybody who comes to Japan will experience virtually everything in this book in the first week; what that other reviewer failed to mention is that nobody else will decide to write a tedious book about it all. Filled with shallow 'insights' and yawn-inducing 'adventures', Feller's book is a soporific account of a dull year as lived by a dull individual who managed, somehow, to con a publisher into releasing this dull book. The fact that it's still in print boggles the mind.

If you're interested in a good read on Japan look for either of Alan Booth's books (Looking For The Lost & The Roads To Sata), John Morley's Pictures From The Water Trade, Will Ferguson's Hokkaido Highway Blues, or anything by Lafcadio Hearn. All of those authors deliver. Mr Feller's book might be useful for chronic insomniacs but everybody else should steer well clear.
15 internautes sur 17 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 A good writer 4 novembre 2002
Par BRETT ROBSON - Publié sur
Format: Broché
Like many people in Japan this book was recommended to me but I didn't want to read it. A friend gave me a copy and eventually I read it.
The author gets so many things wrong about Japan that I wonder if he really spoke as much Japanese as he suggests. I often found my self scoffing at his opinions and explanations. It seems this was the end of his Japanese experience as he has gone on to write books on other topics.
He also strikes me as quite a loner, if this is the summary of his social interaction he must have had a lonely time, which on the JET Programme is not uncommon.
However he has a very good writing style which makes up for a lot of his failures. I'd suggest reading it and enjoying his perspective but be wary of his explanations.
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