‘The Teahouse of the August Moon’: a subversive comedy in postwar Okinawa

By Nicolas Gattig

Published in 1951 and later adapted for a movie and Broadway play, Vern Sneider’s “The Teahouse of the August Moon” is a satirical take on the U.S. Occupation of Japan.

A former commander in postwar Okinawa, Sneider portrays the military government as paternalistic, tasked with establishing a Western-style society and instilling “a sense of responsibility in the people.” However, the natives in one Okinawan village, Tobiki, take advantage of their new ruler, Capt. Fisby. They want Ginza kimonos and better tea, not a Women’s League for Democratic Action.

Trouble starts when the bumbling Fisby is gifted two charming geisha, who need a teahouse built in which they entertain — a challenging feat in war-weary Tobiki. Read more

Source: Japan Times