Eavesdropping on the Emperor

‘In the first 23 years of its operation, the institution then known as the London School of Oriental Studies (today’s SOAS) only produced two graduates in Japanese. This was despite repeated pressure from policy wonks like one Colonel Grimsdale, begging the establishment to have a ready supply of linguists to hand in case of any trouble in the East. The problem was, Grimsdale noted, “a number of chaps just can’t take these languages, and either take to drink or go a bit potty.”’

Over at All the Anime, I review Peter Kornicki’s Eavesdropping on the Emperor.

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