Thank you for your comments. You are not the first to have complained about the diffuseness of these columns and I am sure you will not be the last.
Thanks to Jun, I am able to do in these columns what I would never be able to do in a published book or a journal article. In a book, the material would be subject to the pencil of a ruthless and commercially oriented editor. In an article, much of the material would be relegated to footnotes. There is an automatic footnote function in MS Word, but the last time I checked with Jun (which was a long time ago, admittedly), I seem to remember that he could not handle footnotes. In the last long essay I published in Aikido Journal
, the footnotes disappeared: they were not printed. The value of a journal article lies in the critical review by peers, who have also read all the material and probably more.
You writings here and your hard research work are greatly appreciated. However I personally feel that in this essay you somehow lost focus. Your approach is way too broad and not helping to realize the initial goals. May be in Japan some subjects are very important and still debated, but for us they are -- how to say in polite way --obvious and trivial matters. I was actually very surprised you give them so much space in your writings. It looks like you are targeting Japanese audience…
PAG. Well, we will have to agree to disagree. I split this essay into two parts and explained that this column and the next should be read together. As for a Japanese audience, well, I believe that Kisshomaru Ueshiba wrote his biography of Morihei Ueshiba in Japanese and for a Japanese audience--and the fact that it took thirty years to find English translators is of some importance. Kisshomaru has been accused of telling lies in his biography. I do not think he did, but I am very interested in why Kisshomaru wrote the kind of book he did. This is the main focus of these two columns and I do not think this is an obvious and trivial matter.
Also, are you trying to convince other historians in this essay in favor of your theory? After reading all, it is still not clear to me, what your intentions are….. Even if in the beginning you clearly specified your goals, I feel like a ship in the middle of ocean without a captain…
PAG. I will have more sympathy for your comments after you have read Column 21.