Synopses & Reviews
Written by the foremost authority of the era on Oriental archeology and art, this extremely influential book offers a brief but concise introduction to Asian art. First published in 1883, it responded to a vogue in Western culture for a growing awareness and appreciation of Japanese artistic expressions of beauty and philosophy—a perspective that remains fresh and valid.
Author Kakuzo Okakura (1862-1913) was a co-founder of the Tokyo Fine Art School (now known as Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music) and a curator of Oriental art at Bostons Museum of Fine Arts. He also wrote The Book of Tea, and together with this volume, his writings rank among the most widely read English-language works about Japan. Ideals of the East wrought profound effects on the Western understanding of the internal consistencies and strengths of East Asian aesthetic traditions. One of its major themes, the connections between spirituality and the evolution of Asian art, provided English-speaking people with the earliest lucid account of Zen Buddhism and its relation to the arts.
Dover (2005) unabridged republication of the second edition of The Ideals of the East, with Special Reference to Japanese Art, originally published by E. P. Dutton and Company, New York, 1904.
Written at the turn of the twentieth century by the era’s foremost authority on Oriental art, this concise volume focuses on the relationship between spirituality and Asian art. Ideals of the East,
along with the author’s The Book of Tea,
was among the earliest English-language accounts of the role of Zen Buddhism in art. It exercised enormous influence at the time of its publication and remains one of the most widely read books about Japanese culture.
First published in 1883 and written by the foremost authority of the era, this extremely influential book offers a brief but concise introduction to Asian art. One of its major themes, the connections between spirituality and the evolution of Asian art, provided the earliest lucid English-language account of Zen Buddhism and its relation to the arts.
Table of Contents
The Range of Ideals
The Primitive Art of Japan
Laoism and Taoism--Southern China
Buddhism and Indian Art
The Asuka Period (550-700 a.d.)
The Nara Period (700-800 a.d.)
The Heian Period (800-900 a.d.)
The Fujiwara Period (900-1200 a.d.)
The Kamakura Period (1200-1400 a.d.)
Ashikaga Period (1400-1600 a.d.)
Toyotomi and Early Tokugawa Period (1600-1700 a.d.)
Later Tokugawa Period (1700-1850 a.d.)
The Meiji Period (1850 to the present day)