— Philip Turner (@philipsturner) January 2, 2013
For more than five years, from 1992-97, I worked for Kodansha America, the U.S. division of what was then the largest Japanese publisher, and for the last few years of my tenure was Editor-in-Chief of KA, as we called it. We had a sister company, based in Tokyo, Kodansha International, known as KI. KA published an excellent general list, with a minor emphasis on books about Japan and Asia, while KI published almost exclusively on Japanese and Asian subjects. Among KI’s books was The Only Woman in the Room, Beate Sirota Gordon’s memoir chronicling how she came to play a central role in drafting the sections of Japan’s postwar constitution on the rights of women. As the above referenced obituary in the NY Times makes clear, Ms. Gordon led a remarkable and exemplary life, and her book is also very good.