The Street of a Thousand Blossoms by Gail Tsukiyama tells the story of a family living in Tokyo over 30 years. Two brothers, one a sumo wrestler and the other a maker of Noh theater masks, are forced to adapt their lives to changes in society in order to succeed in their traditional professions. In an…

These are heady days in international mediation circles. A panel discussion earlier this summer at an UNCITRAL conference entitled “Feel the Earth Move – Shifts in the International Dispute Resolution Landscape,” dedicated largely to mediation, captures the sentiment. Reasons for the excitement include the approval of a draft of the UNCITRAL treaty for enforcing mediated…

More than 1,400 years ago, Japan codified Confucian and Buddhist approaches to governing in Prince Shotoku’s Constitution, whose first article provides that “[h]armony should be valued, and quarrels should be avoided.” The underlying principle, wa (harmony), was promoted and reflected in the fabric of Japanese society and may have contributed to a persistent preference for…