On my first trip abroad I traveled throughout the deep south with a camera on my shoulder. I felt it was only natural to meet and get to know African-Americans, since from the time of my youth I was thoroughly enamored of black American writers such as Richard Wright, James Baldwin and Nikki Giovanni. Continue

Another Country

At 6 p.m. on August 2, 1977, I boarded a Greyhound bus leaving Philadelphia, heading south. I awoke the next morning to a window filled with a landscape of red dirt and cotton fields stretching to the horizon. Oak trees stretched their branches over poor farming homes, as if nature was trying to softly embrace the families inside. Continue


In 1977, on my first excursion outside the Japanese islands, I felt deep, inexplicable nostalgia in the Deep South. While resting under a big oak, chatting with people in black neighborhoods, in almost any situation, I would catch myself in amazement: this is really my first time here. Continue