- Paperback: 374 pages
- Publisher: State University of New York Press (September 3, 1991)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0791407500
- ISBN-13: 978-0791407509
- Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.8 x 8.4 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 3 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,799,767 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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An Introduction to Japanese Tea Ritual Paperback – September 3, 1991
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About the Author
Jennifer L. Anderson earned a Ph.D. from Stanford University in Anthropology, and holds a Hikitsugi certificate from the Urasenke tea school.
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The book annalyses different aspects of the art, and of her schooling in it, following the Urasenke family tradition, which is the most accesible to non-Japanese. Information is included about the history and origins of ritual tea-consumption, its development in Japan, the different elements employed in tea ritual and an explanation of their role and 'grammar' (how each element transmit information, like the choices of items employed for each tea gathering, the toriawase). The author has studied Anthropology, so she also gives her reflections on the Tea-Ritual as a form of religious experience, in connection with Zen Buddhism, with transformative and more conventional elements coexisting inside it. The book also explains the structure of Tea-Learning and its organizations (especially Urasenke) and gives a model of a sojo-chaji (formal tea gathering at midday). There's some other tidbits and morsels of information scattered around.
Overall, I'd say this is the best introduction you can probably find about Chado. I've read 3 myself, with this one (Sadler's and Okakura's are the other two), and this one gives the starting information clearly and systematically, and with reasonable depth. The only deffect I'd mention is I wish the book was much, much bigger and detailed.