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Author Information: Lafcadio Hearn

 
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1850-1904

Born on the Ionian coast of Leucadia (hence his given name), Lafcadio Hearn learned his first prayers in Italian and demotic Greek, studied in England and France, and became a Japanese subject at the age of forty-six - he is now buried in a Buddhist cemetary in Tokyo. Lafcadio Hearn could have chosen any of a number of different nationalities, but he always considered himself an American writer - his parents' homeland was the United States. His subject matter, though, was the Orient: not the Orient of chinoiseries and local colour, but the other, more secret and quiet universe rarely discovered by foreigners. He acquired a profound knowledge of Japanese history and culture and became so immersed in these traditions that today the younger Japanese consider him too traditional for their taste.

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