10.6.16

 

Arigato, eu.jpg

 aqui

 

 

 

O Japão é daqueles sítios que transformam as pessoas. Posso atestá-lo pela minha experiência pessoal, cumpridos três meses por lá e quase meio milénio após os meus compatriotas ali entra­rem, eles que também terão mudado após o acidente de Tanegashima (que adiante conheceremos) e dito «obrigado» por este não os ter matado. Também poderei confirmar que a experiência do Extremo Oriente é marcante quando, nos próximos capítu­los, escrever sobre os sete portugueses que aí conheci, abertos e aventureiros como lusos, mornos e simpáticos mas cada vez mais formais, trabalhadores e concentrados como os nipónicos.

 

Em 1512, durante o reinado de D. Manuel I, chegaram notí­cias de que existiria um arquipélago ao largo da China. Fora o mercador italiano Marco Polo quem o dissera, acrescentando que esse conjunto de terras rodeadas por mar era chamado «Cipanto» ou «Ji-pangu», em chinês «o local onde o sol nasce».

 

Na época os japoneses viviam isolados, pois o seu território não tem ligação por terra com nenhum outro e eles só mantinham contacto com a China e com a Coreia, de onde vieram fortes influências culturais, como a escrita, o cultivo do arroz e o budismo. «Uma ilha grande, de gente branca, de boas maneiras, formosa e de uma riqueza incalculável», escreveu Marco Polo. A descrição deixava o novo local envolto numa névoa de fabu­losas riquezas, o mistério que ainda hoje se lhe associa e que atrai portugueses, emigrantes, viajantes e exploradores de todo o mundo.

 

Já em 1540 as informações sobre o Japão eram mais claras, pois barcos japoneses ancoravam nas pequenas ilhas de Liampo, na costa chinesa, e por aí tinham contacto com mercadores lusi­tanos. Segundo uma das versões da história, um dos barcos mercadores dirigia-se para lá levando três portugueses quando foi apanhado numa violenta tempestade, indo parar à ilha de Tane­gashima, ao sul do Japão, no tal acidente pelo qual podemos dizer muito obrigado ou arigato gosaimasu.

 

 

Luís Brito

in  Arigato, eu. Os portugueses no Japão

© Fundação Francisco Manuel dos Santos e Luís Brito. Abril de 2016

 

 

 

link do postPor VF, às 09:00  comentar

24.6.12

 

 

 

 Oita, Japão

 

 

 

Luís de Almeida foi o primeiro português a chegar a Nagasaki, em 1567. Introduziu no Japão a Medicina e a Cirurgia europeias. Não foi, contudo, o primeiro europeu a fazer de médico no Japão. Fernão Mendes Pinto estivera em Bungo em 1543. Ao verificar que o acesso à medicina chinesa era difícil e caro e que qualquer novidade na área dos cuidados médicos se podia tornar bem-vinda, exerceu medicina e praticou cirurgia, sem ter aprendido nem uma coisa nem outra. Na opinião do próprio, teve um sucesso assinalável.

Almeida não fez mais porque, segundo C.R. Boxer, a medicina europeia daquela época tinha pouco para ensinar. Ainda assim, o jesuíta português introduziu no Japão o moderno conceito de Hospital.

O êxito fulgurante da introdução do cristianismo no Japão, levado a cabo por um punhado de missionários da Companhia de Jesus, surpreende quem lê a História desse tempo. Foi, contudo, sol de pouca dura.

 

 

texto integral aqui

 

 

 esta e outras fotografias aqui

 

 

Barbarian medicine in feudal Japan aqui

 

 

Luís de Almeida, Santo Popular japonês aqui 

 


17.6.12

 

 

 

Whose Sleeves? (Tagasode)

Japan, late 16th century


 

 

Joao Rodrigues was born about 1562 at Sernancelhe in northern Portugal and sailed to the East while still a boy of twelve or thirteen years of age. He entered the Jesuit Order in Japan and obtained such a proficiency in Japanese that he acted as Valignano’s interpreter at the audience granted by Hideyoshi in 1591. From that date onwards he made frequent visits to court, acting as spokesman for the Jesuit missionaries and interpreter for the delegations of Portuguese merchants. After Hideyoshi’s death in 1598, Tokugawa Ieyasu continued to favor him and even appointed him as his commercial agent in Nagasaki. Jealousy and resentment on the part of local officials resulted in his exile to Macao in 1610 after living in Japan for thirty-three years, during which time he met many of the leading political and artistic figures of the day. [...]

In addition to his business activities in Japan he found time to publish at Nagasaki in 1608 the Arte da Lingoa de Iapam, a truly monumental work, for it was the first systematic grammar of the Japanese language. Not only does he describe the spoken and written language in exhaustive and possibly excessive detail, but he includes for good measure fascinating accounts of Japanese poetry, letter writing, and history.[...] It is in his account of Japanese art that he displays his outstanding talent, and his description of the tea ceremony, flower arrangement, painting, lacquerwork and calligraphy is unrivaled in contemporary European reports. His appreciation of the Japanese artistic temperament is remarkable, and he accurately and sympathetically portrays the elusive feeling of sabi, the transcendental loneliness of the homo viator in this fleeting world of dew, and the sentiment of wabi, the spirit of disciplined and aesthetic frugality in art and life.
 [...] Writing about the spirit of the tea ceremony, Rodrigues observes:

 

Hence they have come to detest any kind of contrivance and elegance, any pretense, hypocrisy and outward embellishment, which they call keihaku in their language…
Instead, their ideal is to promise little but accomplish much; always to use moderation in everything; finally, to desire to err by default rather than by excess…The more precious the utensils are in themselves and the less they show it, the more suitable they are.


It would be difficult to improve on this summary description of the traditional Japanese canon of taste. Written today by a Westerner, the passage would indicate a commendable understanding and appreciation of an essentially alien culture; to have been written three and a half centuries ago reveals Joao Rodrigues as a unique interpreter not only of the language but also of the artistic genius of the Japanese people.

 

Michael Cooper

in The Southern Barbarians
, The First Europeans in Japan

[Japan Described: The reports of the Europeans]

M. Cooper, A. Ebisawa, F.G. Gutierrez, Diego Pacheco 


Edited by Michael Cooper

Kodansha Ltd, Japan and Palo Alto, Calif.U.S.A. in cooperation with Sophia University, Tokyo, 1971.

 

 

aqui

 

 

 

Notas:


Imagem: Whose Sleeves? (Tagasode) aqui

Texto citado aqui

Azuchi–Momoyama Period aqui 

 

 

Prémio Rodrigues, o Intérprete aqui

 

link do postPor VF, às 11:56  comentar

10.6.12

 

Nagasaki Kunchi Festival (2011)

 

 

The Kunchi festival of Nagasaki was first celebrated in 1634.The festival was originally part of the bakufu policy to forge a Yamato spirit for Nagasaki, which up to 1614 had been Japan's only Christian town. The Kunchi festival started out as an anti-Christian festival, in which the anti-Christian forces in Nagasaki - the bakufu, Shinto, Buddhism and the brothel wards - all joined hands to provide an alternative to the famous Easter processions, which had been performed throughout the city during the Christian period (1570-1614).

After a devastating fire in 1857, Nagasaki Kunchi became a "new" festival in which the participating neighborhoods were free to innovate and to compete with each other in creating opulent and eye-catching performances. The result is the stunning array of presentations we see today, many of which reflect the international color and unique history of Nagasaki.

 

 

 

 

Suwa shrine (main location) Iwaibune ("celebration ship"). 

 


 

Nagasaki Kunchi Festival 2011

 

 

 

Nagasaki Kunchi Festival 2011

 

 

 

 

 

Nagasaki Kunchi Festival 2011

The dragon, Kokkodesho?

 


Captions: from text by Reinier Hesselink here

 

 

Embaixada de Portugal em Tóquio aqui

 

The Last Nan Ban Jin, Aventuras e desventuras de um português no Japão, em pleno Século XXI aqui 

 

 

Nagasaki

 

 

 

 

link do postPor VF, às 01:11  comentar

19.6.11

 

 

 

 

 

netsuke

aqui

 

 

 

 

It could write itself, I think, this kind of story. A few stitched-together wistful anecdotes, more about the Orient-Express, of course, a bit of wandering round Prague or somewhere equally photogenic, some clippings from Google on ballrooms in the Belle Epoque. It would come out as nostalgic. And thin.

And I'm not entitled to nostalgia about all that lost wealth and glamour from a century ago. And I am not interested in thin. I want to know what the relationship has been between this wooden object that I am rolling between my fingers — hard and tricky and Japanese - and where it has been. I want to be able to reach to the handle of the door and turn it and feel it open. I want to walk into each room where this object has lived, to feel the volume of the space, to know what pictures were on the walls, how the light fell from the windows. And I want to know whose hands it has been in, and what they felt about it and thought about it - if they thought about it. I want to know what it has witnessed.

Melancholy, I think, is a sort of default vagueness, a get-out clause, a smothering lack of focus. And this netsuke is a small, tough explosion of exactitude. It deserves this kind of exactitude in return.

 

 

Edmund De Waal

in  The Hare with Amber Eyes - A Hidden Inheritance  (prefácio)

© Edmund de Waal 2010

 

 

 

 

 

 

aqui

 

 

 

 

 

 

link do postPor VF, às 14:13  comentar

3.3.11

 

 

 

D. Day

Foto de Robert Capa

 

 

 

Merci aux Américains, aux Anglais, aux Canadiens, aux Australiens, aux Polonais qui m'ont sauvé un reste de famille, merci à ceux qui permirent aux Français d'aujourd'hui de n'être pas contraints à penser nazi ou stalinien, merci à ceux qui brisèrent le mur de l’Atlantique et nous aidèrent jusqu'à la chute du mur de Berlin. Sans D. Day, pas de nouvelle Europe à 6, à 15, à 25 et plus. Je suis encore, privilège de l’âge, habité par la joie cosmique, extatique, qui éclatait au-dessus de ma tête d'enfant, lorsque les grandes personnes prononçaient le mot «libération».

 

II fallut attendre le milieu des années 70 pour qu'un président de la République fédérale reconnaisse clairement et distinctement que l’Allemagne, à l'issue de la Deuxième Guerre mondiale, ne fut pas «envahie», mais «libérée». C'est pour que la différence entre les deux mots affiche son évidence décisive que mes proches et mes lointains, à Lyon, à Omaha beach, à Stalingrad sont morts. On parle à tort et à travers, par les temps qui courent, de «légitimité internationale». La seule, la vraie fût inaugurée sur les plages normandes. Si l’ONU, malgré son côté capharnaüm, ne ressemble pas tout à fait à la triste SDN, c'est que ses fondateurs à San Francisco avaient juré que le Japon et l’Allemagne ne seraient ni conquis ni colonisés, mais purement et simplement libérés du fascisme. D'où deux principes qui, étayant silencieusement la Charte des Nations Unies, surdéterminent ses inévitables ambiguïtés et contradictions : 1/le droit des peuples à être libérés, 2/ l'autolimitation du droit du vainqueur, interdit de conquête mais introducteur de démocratie.

 

Le droit des peuples à être libéré d'un despotisme extrême - droit au D. Day - prime sur le respect ordinaire des frontières et le principe séculaire de souveraineté. Eu égard à la Déclaration universelle des droits de l'homme, expérience des totalitarismes aidant, le très essentiel droit des peuples à disposer d'eux-mêmes ne doit ni garantir ni impliquer le droit des gouvernants à disposer de leurs peuples. Le débarquement en Normandie fonde les interventions récentes au Kosovo, en Afghanistan et en Irak, même sans couverture du Conseil de Sécurité. Pour une raison décisive : la légitimité inaugurale qui présida à la constitution de l'ONU l'emporte en autorité sur la jurisprudence ordinaire des institutions issues de cette légitimité fondatrice. […]

 

Les Etats-Unis peuvent-ils encore se réclamer du droit d'ingérence baptisé dans le sang versé pour libérer l'Europe? Oui. Malgré les ignominies récentes commises dans les prisons irakiennes? Oui. Car dans le pire comme pour le meilleur, les Etats-Unis demeurent une démocratie. Et même la plus exemplaire des démocraties, la seule à ma connaissance qui n'ait pas censuré, en pleine guerre, la publication des crimes commis par ses soldats. La seule où la presse et la télévision dévoilent en quelques semaines l'ampleur des exactions et scrutent librement les tenants et les aboutissants du crime accompli. La seule où les commissions d'enquête parlementaire citent à comparaître un président, des ministres, des généraux, les chefs des services secrets en les interrogeant sans ménagement ni restriction.

 

 

André Glucksmann

in Le Discours de la Haine pp. 128-129

© Editions Plon, 2004

 



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