Snow Country: Relevance of a Literary Masterpiece

  In a recent broadcast, NHK, the national broadcaster of Japan has presented the dramatic replica of ‘Snow Country’ a Nobel Prize awardee novel of Yasunari Kawabata. This novel was published in its final form just after WWII in 1947 and gained attention of global readers. Today with the concerns of climate change dabates, its relevance emerged again. EDWARD G. SEIDENSTICKER translated this masterpiece which is widely respected among readers. In the introductory note he observed, “Kawabata was born near Osaka in 1899 and was orphaned at the age of two. His short stories began to attract attention soon after his graduation from Tokyo Imperial University. He presently became a leading figure in the lyrical school that offered the chief opposition to the proletarian literature of the late twenties. Snow Country was begun in 1934 and published piecemeal between 1935 and 1937. In 1947 a final installment was added, and the novel completed as it stands today. 

Snow Country is perhaps Kawabata's masterpiece. He has found in Shimamura's love affair the perfect symbol for a denial of love, and he has in the woman Komako and in the shadowy beauty of the snow country fit subjects for the haiku-like flashes that bring the denial forth. And, in the final analysis, the very success of the novel becomes a sort of affirmation of the humanity that is being denied.”

To watch, visit the NHK site by clicking the links below. 

Snow Country-Part-I 

Snow Country-Part-II 

-Presented by Globalculturz Team.

China-Taiwan Tensions: A Global Crisis

Photo Credit: AFP

Tina Inoue Williams

Research Associate

CCGS, US Center, South Carolina


China’s one-nation principle is widely accepted fact, which allows it to consider Taiwan as a part of its territory. This principle is acknowledged by most of the nations, including the US, in principle only. Practically, neighboring nations oppose this idea due to security threat and they wish to maintain the status-quo. China, as history shows, is an expansionist country and due to its very virtue of communist values it hardly permits the diversity to propagate. Various studies have established that many ‘accomodated’ regions in China have lost their identities. The best example is Tibet, whose spritual leader has taken asylum in India since past many decades. Recently, democratic movements in Hong Kong were brutally crushed by the mainland China. Chinese politics has a tradition and training to govern in an autocratic manner. So they did the same in Hong Kong and will do in Taiwan, in case they are able to gain control over it. Chinese have also banned imports of several food products-fish and fruits from Taiwan. It will impact Taiwanese economy severly as 33% of trade import is done by China. China has been regarded as ‘land encrocher’ nation amongst its neighbors. It is true that Chinese authorities have grabbed the land in South China Sea and developing a military facility there. It has marine disputes with Japan, Taiwan and the Phillipines. The land dispute with India was never settled and there were armed conflicts between the the two nuclear armed nations.

Recently, the visit of US House Speaker, Nancy Pelosi, to Taipei, has trigered a global crises. In the meanwhile, Ukraine and Russia are fighting a full-sacle war. The US kept it aside, though it is supplying weapens and other financial support to Ukraine to deter Russian invasion. It is very likely that China will attack Taiwan in near future. In that case, the high possibilty is that the US will get involved. Intention of the same has been shown by President, Joe Biden in an interview. The two global powers involvement in any kind of military activity will,certainly, bring more misery to the common folks. Particularly, developing nations will suffer the most. As Ukranian wheat export embargo brought severe food shortage to African countries. The role of UNSC seems very limited, almost a preaching kind of thing, whenever such disastrous events happen. In a better way, China can keep restraint in the interest of global communities. Thuogh, as live drills are going on, it is just a remote possibility. The US-China relations are touching a lower side each day. Dialogues between them can find a solution to restore peace in Asia, which heading towards a war. Chinese bulling attitude has already annoyed Japan and India. PLA, the Chienese army, is on the soil of Indian Union Territory of Ladakh, as claimed by some Indian think-tanks. Japan has recorded a few objections, through diplomatic channels, over Chinese vessels violating sea boundaries near Senkaku islands. It’s time for the Chinese authorities to give a thought on why they are sidelined by the most of the nations, particularly by their neighbors. This can help to shape a peaceful world. 

Message from Tokio Hasegawa San

 Happy New Year

The day after I returned the exhibits from the exhibition "The Collection of the Mithila Museum" in Urayasu City, Chiba Prefecture.

The next day (December 29th last year), it was getting dark, so I turned on my headlamp and started to take the snow down from the roof for the first snow. I could feel the moon coming from behind the mountains for looking to see my snow work.

This year is the 75th anniversary of India's independence and the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Japan and India.

I hope we will be able to hold various events to celebrate, even if the Corona disaster.

I look forward to working with you again this year.

I wish you all good health and happiness.

New Year's Day, 2022

Tokio Hasegawa

265 Oike, Tokamachi City, Niigata 948-0018 Japan

Mithila Art Museum

NPO Society to Promote Indo-Japan Cultural Relations.

Tel.025-752-2396 Mail :

The following record (limited to 300 copies) and a book about my music (500 copies) were released last November.


Record: "Stone Music Experimental Rooms Niigata, Japan

Book: "Stone Music: The Music of Tokio Hasegawa" (written by Koji Kawasaki)

For more information, please visit the following URL or use the QR code on the right.

Antony J. Blinken, Secretary of State of the United States of America, Visits India

Finn Schulz

Director, Center for Culture & Global Studies

Berlin Chair, Berlin, Germany


The USA wants India to play a bigger role in Asia. To contain Chinese exapansion in its neighborhoods-South China Sea, Senkaku Islands (Japan) and various parts of India and elsewhere in world, a new alliance-Quad-was formed and made active during recent years. This alliance of four countries- is annouced as a non-military, civil alliance but it seems to target military, economic, and debt-developmental expansions by Chinese Government. Quad has clearly asserted to move ahead with restoration of democratic values all across the world and work for human rights in Hong Kong and other parts of China including Tibet. At presernt, the nations under Quad have pledged to contain Covid-19 pandemic and aimed to put the global economy on path. 

       In a joint press meet Indian External Affairs Minister-Mr. S.Jaishankar Says, ‘Whether it is responding to the COVID challenge, cooperating on defense and security, encouraging trade and investment, addressing climate change, or expanding education innovation, I can say truly that there is much that has happened in 2021’. He clearly indicated security and defence cooperations, the key issue, which is downplayed in formal meetings. Chinese ambition to become a global power is obvious; but treating India as an enemy nation and creating nuisence in its neighborhood is major concern to achive this goal. Democratic forces are worried and cautious about the Chinese ‘Intentions’ and always keep an eye on its activities. The general global opinion is that China adopts ‘unfair’ means to ensure her winability and gain economic profits. It supplies poor quality products to under developed countries, allows cyber attacks and hackings, constructs illegal infrastuctures, traps poorer nations in debts, supports and saves terror groups and army coup, does not follow international courts orders and crushes human rights with in China with brutal force. The western nations, particularly the US leads such campaigns against China and a wider general global perception is against China. Recently, China, created hurdules in a fair enuiry of Corona virus spread. A common sense asks, is it just a coincidence, that the location of original spread and establishment of premier Chinese virology lab is the same. If is mere a coincidence, it should be called ‘wonderful’.  

The secratary of the State addressed the press in a personlised manner, which is rare for US ooficilas, he said,‘There are few relationships in the world that are more vital than the one between the United States and India. We are two of the world’s leading democracies, and our diversity fuels our national strength. We are two of the world’s largest economies powered by the innovative spirit of our people. At a time of rising temperatures and sea levels, we – two of the world’s largest carbon emitters – are on the front lines of the climate crisis and the leading edge of a new green economy. Our countries know firsthand the lethal consequences of climate change.

And the Indian and American people are united by millions of family ties stretching back generations and by shared values and shared aspirations. Together, the actions of – that India and the United States take are shaping the 21st century and beyond.’

It was a touching speech for Indian people. Biden administration has incorporated a large number of Indian Diaspora and has given them key responsibilities. Need not to mention, Kamla Harris, the Vice-President. The QUAD is progressing and will shape the Asian development. It’s time for China to rethink about its role in maintaing global order.

QUAD: Beyond China with New Agenda

Paul Wilson

CCGS, Sydney Chair (Australia)


Quad-a group of four nations-is setting new agenda. The idea of Quad or ‘Security Diamond’ was propounded by the former Japanese Prime Minister-Abe Shinzo in 2007 during his state visit to India. It was hibernation since then and no ‘active’ steps were taken to groom the group. The initial focus was to ensure free Indo-Pacific navigation and contain Chinese aggression in the region. Now, the group of the US, India, Japan and Australia-have come up with new agenda to control the spread of Covid-19 virus, boost global vaccination and improve economic growth. However the real issue, though hidden, is to check and balance Chinese expansionism in Indo-Pacific, South and East China Sea.


The Sprit of the Quad is presented in recently held summit, online. It seems, the Quad countries have realized the need to broaden the agenda and carry out more welfare schemes. Just opposing China have been found ‘ineffective’ in contemporary global scenario. “We bring diverse perspectives and are united in a shared vision for the free and open Indo-Pacific. We strive for a region that is free, open, inclusive, healthy, anchored by democratic values, and unconstrained by coercion” states the document supplied by the White House. It is also taking up the vaccination. “China, in a reference to the Quad coalition comprising India, United States, Australia and Japan, on Monday said that certain countries were keen to exaggerate the threat posed by Beijing in order to create discord in the Indo-Pacific region” writes 

Quad has created worries in Chinese administration. It has claimed a larger part in South China Sea, despite global concerns and International Court of Justice ruled against this occupation and termed it ‘illegal’. There were several sanctions and diplomatic altercations between the US and China in the last few years. The relationship between Australia and China touched low during Pandemic period of coronavirus. Even, Japanese water boundaries, particularly near Senkaku Islands were violated by Chinese naval ships on many occasions. Indian Army, too, has seen longer standoffs with Peoples Liberation Army (PLA) at different boarder points. These emerging situations in Asia-pacific compelled the Quad Nations to come together and address the security cause, collectively. This time, though, it has been kept in background and other issues like covid vaccination and climate change have been floated on the table. 

Security analyst, sometimes, call this alliance as ‘Asian NATO’. Some of them also said that -this the beginning of the new cold-war. China is showing her mighty presence across the globe by initiating One Belt One Road (OBOR) project. Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) under the influence of China providing a parallel economic and development platform and offering better finance facilities than the US controlled International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank. An economic and security demarkation is quite visible at global scenario. Will Quad be able to contain Chinese aggression and expansionism? There are some indicators and dynamic activities. We have to observe them closely.

Video: City & Life-Tokyo

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