Kyoto Journal Issue 90



KJ’s 90th issue celebrates those roads that, since prehistory, have carried not only travelers and trade, but also the seeds of new cultural flowerings. Passing through both time and terrain, roads lead to that ongoing reinvention, the future—and back into the past.



Iran, Pakistan and Afghanistan from another era: stunning photography from Luke Powell’s forthcoming book, Asia Highway, and primordial sea-roads traveled by ancient Shinto gods in Yoshida Shigeru’s photos of torii gates along the Tohoku coastline, with an accompanying essay by John Dougill;

Following in the footsteps of an itinerant Kyoto priest of the 13th-century Kaidoki in a new translation by Meredith McKinney, and the Tokaido highway with renowned woodblock artist Hiroshige in John Gohorry’s retelling of a historical shogunate mission;

Victorian-era explorer Isabella Bird on her Unbeaten Tracks in Japan, a classic account of travels by rickshaw and pack-horse in 1878, and Ann Tashi Slater recounts a family road trip brimming with idealism;

Pico Iyer ponders local bikers’ fascination with Route 66 in his quiet Nara suburb, and Lianca Van Der Merwe reports back from a new gourmet cycling tour of rural Iwate Prefecture, and;

Robert Brady, KJ’s Rambler-at-Large, meditates on the traveler’s life-journey.


Border by Yoshida Shigeru



Manga reportage on disaster relief by Fumio Obata, and the third instalment on our series on the mysterious performing art of Noh by KJ’s Consulting Editor Mizuho Toyoshima;

Illuminating interviews with kimono designer Tange Yusuke by textile artist Melinda Heal, and Yamada Akihiro, architect of Kyoto’s beloved Kamo River promenade, by Jeff Adler;

Beautifully illustrated short fiction from the battlefields of Pakistan by Mohammad Nasrullah Khan, plus our selection of poetry and reviews of the latest Asia-related books.


Cover by Everett Kennedy Brown


Printed on Vent Nouveau fine art paper by SunM Color, Kyoto


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