JFT Book Club (Hybrid) – With Silent Reading Time – Japanese Ceramics & Life in the Edo to Meiji Periods

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June 18 @ 5:30 pm - 7:00 pm EDT

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Thank you to all those who participated in JFT Book Club (Hybrid) – With Silent Reading Time – Japanese Ceramics & Life in the Edo to Meiji Periods!


Sharing some comments from our participants!
“I would just like to thank Risa and Emi for conducting this interesting session. I stepped away from my usual manga and novel reading habit this time to dive into the amazing world of Japanese ceramics. This gave me a good opportunity to learn about the rich history of Japan! Looking forward to future book club meetings.
Oh and thank you for the amazing library catalogue. I have almost a year’s worth of books on my To Be Read list at the moment. Really appreciate it. Keep up the great work!.”


“Excellent experience for me personally, first was the ceramics lecture and now this book reading club that I enjoyed so much! I have always wanted to know and understand more about Japan’s fascinating history and culture and this amazing fusion of old traditions and the modernity that are so unique to Japanese culture! I finally have time to do something that I like very much, so looking very forward to the next venues. Thank you so much again for the greatly spent time! Will think more about the suggestions in the future! ” — Lioudmila

Please continue to check the JFT’s website and newsletters for future book club information.

Enjoy the Simple Pleasure of Reading in Silence & Discover Japanese Arts and History!

Join our next JFT Book Club (Hybrid) meeting where you are invited to read a book in silence in the library (or wherever you want if participating virtually) and engage in optional discussion with fellow book lovers interested in Japanese arts. Inspired by the JFT Gallery’s current exhibition, our upcoming book club meeting invites you to explore the beauty of Japanese ceramics and life from the Edo (1603-1868) to Meiji (1868-1912) periods.

No prior knowledge/preparation is required – indulge in the simple pleasure of reading in silence and engage in optional discussion to share your discoveries with fellow book and art lovers!


Many of us simply want more time to read but cannot squeeze the time in, as we have too many distractions and interruptions in our daily lives to concentrate on reading. JFT Book Club with Silent Reading Time offers a sanctuary to indulge in the simple pleasure of reading, surrounded by fellow book enthusiasts who share your love for literature. In addition, we provide an optional space for those who wish to connect and discuss their reading experiences with others. Engage in conversations at your comfort level and learn new perspectives from other book lovers from different cultural backgrounds that you wouldn’t gain from reading alone! It’s a safe space where your thoughts and impressions are valued, regardless of whether you choose to actively participate or quietly absorb the conversations around you. We welcome both seasoned book club members and first-time participants to discover the joy of silent reading without the pressures of finishing an assigned book on time and/or participating in mandatory discussions.

Register Here  

  If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact us in person, by phone, email, or via contact form.


  1. Once you register for the event, find a book to read based on the criteria listed in WHAT BOOK TO BRING? (see below) or from JFT Library’s collection.
  2. On the day of the event, we will meet via Zoom and in person at the Japan Foundation Toronto Library (2 Bloor St E #300, Toronto, ON M4W 1A8 Canada). *Click here to check how to get to our Library.
  3. We will start with a quick introduction & ice-breaking activity (*Light refreshments will be served for in-person participants)
  4. Participants will share their books and why they pick them up (2-3 minutes each)
  5. Silent Reading Time: Participants will read the book they bring or the one recommended by other participants anywhere in the library or wherever they want if participating virtually. If you join the book club in-person, you can check the JFT Gallery exhibition to compare the actual ceramics with what is written on the book you read.
  6. Optional Discussion Time: We will share what we have learned, what we think about the depictions of Japanese arts and culture during the Meiji and/or Edo periods, favourite moments from your chosen book, suggestions for next reads, etc.

*There is no right or wrong answer. Different perspectives make the discussion more fun and vibrant!


A book to bring can be either a physical book, ebook, or audiobook that meets the following criteria:

  • Theme: The JFT Gallery Exhibition “From Edo to Meiji: Transformation of Japanese Ceramics” (i.e., fiction, nonfiction, or manga about Japanese Ceramics ; fiction, nonfiction, or manga portraying Japanese culture and society in Edo (1603-1867) and/or Meiji (1867-1912) periods)
  • Language: Books can be written in any language (i.e. English, Japanese, French) but the book club meeting will be in English.

Check out JFT Library’s Book Lists to get ideas! 

You can either select a book from the JFT Library’s collection, or bring their own copy from home (can be a book not in JFT library collection if it meets the criteria above).

  • If you would like to bring a book that is not in JFT library collection, please consult us in advance with the book information. (We may consider the book for future library acquisitions. ) 

    *You can check whether the book is part of our collection by searching on our online catalogue (*to search physical & digital items) or JF Canada/USA Digital Library (*to search and read ebooks & audiobooks). Please contact us if you wish to confirm the availability with us.

To get a new JFT library card or to renew your existing card, please follow the instructions found here.

Related Programming

From Edo to Meiji: Transformation of Japanese Ceramics –Ceramic exhibition with ROM–

Now – Friday, June 28, 2024

In-Person Exhibition| Admission free 


This special presentation of the collection of the Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto, reveals that Western modernization and the demand for exports influenced Japanese ceramics during the transitional period of the late Edo period to the Meiji period.

Now with an additional presentation, Kutani-ware Display with contributions from Toronto collectors, dedicated to the victims and survivors of the earthquake on January 1st, 2024, in Noto Peninsula, Ishikawa, Japan.

Details Here

Royal Ontario Museum’s Online Collection

For those who are unable to visit JFT Gallery in person, some of the pieces in the exhibition are viewable online on the ROM’s Online Collection, which is accessible to everyone, anywhere in the world.

*List of ROM objects in the JFT Gallery exhibition (PDF with hyperlinks) *UPDATED on Jun 3*

Details Here

Living with Ceramics in Japan: From Edo to Meiji

Thursday, June 13, 6:00PM – 7:30PM (ET)
Livestream Online Lecture | JFT Youtube Channel | Admission Free | Registration Required

This online talk will explore how people in Japan used ceramics during the Edo period, when the Tokugawa shogunate ruled the archipelago and the samurai held political and military dominance, and the Meiji period, when the emperor was symbolically restored to power and modernization transformed the nation.

Register here


Previous Book Clubs

JFT Book Club (Hybrid) – Manga: BL Metamorphosis by TSURUTANI Kaori – April 18, 2024

JFT Book Club (Hybrid): Mild Vertigo by KANAI Mieko – February 13, 2024

JFT Book Club (Hybrid) – With Silent Reading Time – Holiday Reading Recommendations – November 16, 2023

JFT Book Club (Hybrid) – Manga: Planetes by YUKIMURA Makoto – September 28, 2023

JFT Book Club (Hybrid) – With Silent Reading Time – LGBTQIA+ Books -June 20, 2023

JFT Book Club Online – Manga: After the Rain by MAYUZUKI Jun -April 24, 2023

JFT Book Club Online – Three Short Works by NISHI Kanako: On beauty, the Female Experience and Othering – February 8, 2023

JFT Book Club Online: Temple Alley Summer by KASHIWABA Sachiko – September 15, 2022

JFT Book Club Online: Manga – June 15, 2022


JFT Book Club Online: Bring Your Own Book – April 13, 2022

JFT Book Club Online: The Woman in the Purple Skirt by Natsuko Imamura
– February 9, 2022

JFT Book Club Online:
Colorful by Eto Mori
– November 10, 2021


JFT Book Club Online: Heaven by Mieko Kawakami – August 12, 2021

JFT Book Club Online: Manga – June 10, 2021


JFT Book Club Online: Bring Your Own Book – April 8, 2021

JFT Book Club Online: The Memory Police – February 11, 2021

JFT Book Club Online: Breasts and Egg – November 5, 2020

JFT Book Club Online: Travel Japan – August 20, 2020

JFT Book Club Online – June 11, 2020

Memoirs of a Polar Bear – February 20, 2020


The Little House – December 12, 2019

Mystery Book Club – October 10, 2019

Movies and Books – August 8, 2019

Books and Tea – June 6, 2019


June 18 @ 5:30 pm
June 18 @ 7:00 pm
Event Category:


The Japan Foundation, Toronto
View Organizer Website


The Japan Foundation, Toronto
2 Bloor St. East, 3rd Floor
Toronto, ON M4W 1A8 Canada
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View Organizer Website