Minor Press

Green & 88

Green, published in English in Hawai’i, and 88, published in Japanese in Tokyo, are two free magazines that are radically different in style and appearance, but identical in spirit. They both focus on sustainable living practices.

At 60 pages (of recycled paper), and with several large corporate sponsors, Green is definitely a more ambitious project. Although they are only on their 3rd issue, they have distribution throughout Hawai’i and cover a robust range of topics whose interest extends beyond the tropical archipelago. Eco-friendly weddings, rooftop gardens and organic farming were just a few of the many informative columns in the recent issue.

88 has been around for several years. It is beautifully designed, printed on rice paper and distributed around Japan. The magazine has some large sponsors, but you can still see its free-spirited, hippie roots, from the small shops whose banner ads it runs to eclectic information it provides on earth-friendly products and events. With so many Japanese free magazines that amount to so much garbage, it is refreshing to see a company doing it right!




Borderless Reading

The Sound of Waves

Mishima Yukio’s novella “The Sound of Waves” (潮騒 shiosai, 1954) is perhaps his most accessible work and a rarity when compared to the rest of his body of work. Unlike so many of his other psychologically complex (and politically charged) novels, this early work is an elegantly structured love story. The setting for his work is Kamishima (see page 34), though Mishima changed the name of the isle to Utajima (Song Island). His description of it as relatively deserted remains somewhat true today.

For the young protagonist, Kubo Shinji, life in the tiny fishing village is quiet until a wealthy resident, Miyata Terukichi, decides to call his daughter back to the village from a nearby island. The beautiful Hatsue is the target of considerable attention, especially after Miyata promises to adopt her future husband into the family (and his wealth). Kubo’s chances look good until a former admirer of his, Chiyoko, returns from Tokyo. Will his love for Hatsue prevail over Chiyoko’s jealousy and machinations? Not without some drama, naturally.



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