This week, we cover the story of Engelbert Kaempfer, who wrote one of the most thorough and best known accounts of Japan for Western consumption before the Meiji era. How did this random German dude end up in Japan? What did he write about it? What did he think of it? And why do we care?
Roberts, J.A.G. “Not the Least Deserving:The Philosophes and the Religions of Japan.” Monumenta Nipponica 44, No. 2 (Summer, 1989), 151-169.
Michel, Wolfgang. “His Story of Japan: Engelbert Kaempfer’s Manuscript in a New Translation.” Monumenta Nipponica 55, No 1 (2000), 109-120.
A fascinating academic piece on prostitution and the Dutch in Nagasaki.
A complete version of the Kaempfer text from Archive.org.
Haberland, Detlef. Engelbert Kaempfer: A Biography