We are pleased to announce that former Senior Adviser to the Center for Okinawan Studies, Mr. Robert Nakasone, has been awarded the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Rays by the Japanese government in recognition of his contribution to the promotion of friendly relations and mutual understanding between Japan and the United States. Mr. Nakasone will receive the award at a special ceremony at the Japanese Consulate-General in Honolulu on June 5th.
For more information see:http://www.honolulu.us.emb-japan.go.jp/en/2012harujyokun.htm
A brand new course is being offered by the UHM Department of Anthropology during the Fall 2012 semester. ANTH 487 Okinawa and Its Diaspora will be taught by Dr. Christine Yano.
Here’s an excerpt from the course description:
Anth 487 Okinawa and Its Diaspora (Writing intensive)
Okinawa constitutes a separate but related culture and history within the nation-state of Japan. One of the distinctive features of Okinawa is the degree to which large numbers of its population have emigrated to distant lands, making new homes, while keeping ties to the homeland. The strong ties of Okinawa’s diaspora have helped foster a sense of identity that is simultaneously Okinawan (link to homeland) and immigrant settler (link to new home). With generations of these social processes, the ties to and from Okinawa have evolved into new configurations of identity. This course aims to explore these configurations.
“Champuru” (“something mixed”) is a popular Okinawan dish similar to a stir fry. Champuru is also used to refer to cultural aspects of Okinawa that emphasizes mixings and hybridity. Historically, Okinawa has developed its character of champuru through political, economic, and cultural interactions transnationally amid uneven relations of power and conflict. This course examines the relationship between Okinawan and its diaspora through a champuru sense of identity. What role do culture, politics, and history play in shaping Okinawan identity? How have different transnational contexts shaped the champuru Okinawan culture(s) and their representations in the homeland and abroad?
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UH made a strong showing at recent symposium “Remembering 40 Years Since Reversion”: Okinawan Studies Until Now; Okinawan Studies from Now on,” held at Waseda University from March 29th through the 31st. Fourteen UH students, faculty, and alumni gave presentations on a wide range of topics, joining colleagues from other universities throughout the world in one of the largest Okinawan Studies conferences in recent years. The most noticeable feature of the symposium, funded by the Japan Foundatiion, was the large proportion of young scholars presenting their research. There were also several presentations on the Okinawan diaspora in South America, a topic that rarely gets the attention it deserves. Most of the UHM students and faculty received funding from one or more of the following sources: the Center for Japanese Studies, the Japan Studies Endowment, the Center for Okinawan Studies, the Okinawan Studies WUB Endowment, the Matsuro and Tsuruko Nakasone Endowment, the College of Languages, Linguistics and Literature, the University Research Council, and the UH Graduate Student Organization. We are grateful for this broad institutional support for Okinawan Studies.
Continue reading “UHM Students and Faculty at Waseda University”