Family, japanese, Japanese Culture, Women

A Rose by any Other Name: Japanese Conservatives and the Question of Retaining One’s Family Name

woman wearing white long sleeved dress beside man
Photo by Trung Nguyen on Pexels.com

Submission by Assoc. Prof. David Chapman

In many countries around the world, including Australia, it is commonplace for a woman to take on her husband’s surname after marriage. As the ABC reported last year, recent estimates suggest that approximately 80% of women choose to change their name after marriage. However, many are turning to away from traditional expectations, with some brides keeping their own name, choosing hyphenated names, and some husbands/spouses choosing to take on their wife’s name.

In Australia, expectations around a woman’s choice to change her name after marriage are usually limited to her family and immediate social circle. It may be more acceptable to do so in certain social contexts than in others. As name changes are a “matter of custom, not law“, there is no government intervention to keep track of, nor enforce this practice in any way. Continue reading “A Rose by any Other Name: Japanese Conservatives and the Question of Retaining One’s Family Name”

cultural history, heritage, History, Humanities, Intellectual history, japanese, Japanese Culture, literature, memory, Uncategorized

The Importance and Intangibility of Heritage

 

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Dainichi-dō bugaku godai sonmai by Wc018 via Wikimedia Commons

Post Submission by: Dr Natsuko Akagawa

We often talk about heritage in relation to our familial and linguistic connections to countries, with these connections passed down from generation to generation. However, as the ABC recently reported it only takes three generations for many migrant families to lose their native tongue, leading some to suggest that Australia is a “graveyard of languages”. In order to understand how these cultural and linguistic linkages become muddied or even lost, it is important to look at the bigger picture, how the memories and objects in the world around us become elements of heritage to which people relate and hold dear.

Dr Akagawa, considers these questions and more in a number of publications that investigates the nature of heritage as it applies to people, nations and global interactions, and more specifically, the important links between heritage conservation and national identity. Continue reading “The Importance and Intangibility of Heritage”

Art, heritage, History, Humanities, Immigration, japanese, Japanese Culture, literature

Japan in Australia: Culture, Context and Connection – A New Edited Collection

adult back view backpack beautiful
Photo by Tim Gouw on Pexels.com

Submission by: Assoc. Prof. David Chapman

In 2007, Assoc. Prof. David Chapman led a project  highly successful symposium held at the University of Queensland entitled “Japan in Australia“. The symposium sought to investigate a curious gap in the literature on Japan-Australia relations. While previous discourse on the two countries had focused primarily on the relationship between Japan and Australia, there had been little focus “on Japan’s place within Australia and within the nation’s social, cultural and historical landscape”. Furthermore, “with the changing dynamic of Australia’s relationship with Asia [particularly with Australia’s increasing focus on Chinese and South Korean relations] there is a need for a fresh look at Japan within Australia and how Japan has been understood and conceptualised”.

From the research presented at the symposium, Assoc. Prof. David Chapman and Assoc. Prof. Carol Hayes (ANU) edited the newly published collection: Japan in Australia: Culture, Context and ConnectionThis collection is “a work of cultural history that focuses on context and connection between two nations. It examines how Japan has been imagined, represented and experienced in the Australian context through a variety of settings, historical periods and circumstances”. Continue reading “Japan in Australia: Culture, Context and Connection – A New Edited Collection”

Humanities, japanese, Japanese Culture, literature, Poetry, Women

Acclaimed Japanese Poet Hiromi Ito to visit University of Queensland

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Photo provided by Hiromi Ito

Submission by: Assoc. Prof. Tomoko Aoyama

Internationally acclaimed Japanese poet Hiromi Itō is one of Japan’s most important highly regarded poets working today, having won a number of prestigious literary awards since her poetry debut in late 1970s. Born in Tokyo, Itō travelled extensively to the USA, and eventually moving there in the 1990s, where she worked exploring new genres and subject matter for over two decades . In recent years, Itō has returned to Japan, where she is currently working as a Professor of literature at the prestigious Waseda University. Continue reading “Acclaimed Japanese Poet Hiromi Ito to visit University of Queensland”

Animals, japanese, Japanese Culture, literature, Novels, Translation, Women

Revisiting Mieko Kanai’s “Oh Tama!” in translation

cat paws in shallow focus photography
Photo by Monica Silvestre on Pexels.com

Submission by: Assoc. Prof. Tomoko Aoyama

Kanai, Mieko. Oh Tama: A Mejiro Novel. Translated by Tomoko Aoyama and Paul McCarthy. Stone Bridge Press, 2018.

Originally published by Kurodahan Press, Oh Tama! A Mejiro Novel has been revised and re-published by Stone Bridge Press. Translators Tomoko Aoyama and Paul McCarthy have noted that this novel is not just for those who are interested in Japanese studies or translated works but would appeal to cat lovers, literary comedy and satire fans, and those who love to revel in nostalgia for the 1980’s (which is enjoying a boom in pop-culture at the moment evident through the popularity of series such as Netflix’s Stranger Things).  Continue reading “Revisiting Mieko Kanai’s “Oh Tama!” in translation”