Which family member in the book does de Waal identify with the most? Why does he identify with that particular family member? How do think they would have gotten along if they had met in real life?
Describe the journey of the netsuke. Why is the journey the netsuke took so important to de Waal and his family?
In the book the author describes how the American attack and occupation changed Japan.
1. What was Japan like before the war? How did America ideals change Japan?
2. How did the Japanese cope with the change? Do they harbor any bitterness towards the Americans?
Choose one of the city's de Waal's family lived in and examine how anger towards the Jewish population developed. Why were the originally accepted into the city? Why were the eventually ran out of the city?
Choose one of the city's de Waal visits in the book...
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