As the Japanese See It: Past and Present by Michiko Y. Aoki, Margaret B. Dardess

By Michiko Y. Aoki, Margaret B. Dardess

Textual content followed at college of Kansas; college of Missouri, Columbia.

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Third Sunday in May. Hakata Dontaku Port Festival, Fukuoka. Citizens, dressed as deities, parade through the streets clapping wooden rice paddles. May 3 and 4. Children’s Day is a national holiday honoring all children, especially boys. The most common sight throughout Japan is colorful streamers of carp— which symbolize perseverance and strength, attributes desirable for boys— flying from poles. May 5. Takigi Noh Performances, Kofukuji Temple, Nara. These Noh plays are presented outdoors after dark under the blaze of torches.

July 7. Hozuki Ichi (Ground-Cherry Pod Fair), Tokyo. This colorful affair at 33 Sensoji Temple in Asakusa features hundreds of stalls selling groundcherry pods and colorful wind bells. July 9 and 10. Yamakasa, Fukuoka. Just before the crack of dawn, seven teams dressed in loincloths and happi coats (short, colorful, kimono-like jackets) race through town, bearing 1-ton floats on their shoulders. ) floats designed by Hakata doll masters are on display throughout town. July 15. Gion Matsuri, Kyoto.

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