Professor Kohno Speaks

Professor Masaru Kohno of Waseda University

Professor Masaru Kohno opened the Fall seminar series with, “Japanese Politics after 3/11: Trends and Challenges.” He saw the divided politics of the Japanese Diet inhibiting political responses to the disasters of March 11, 2011.  He questioned whether defections of Diet members from the Democratic Party, rising local political parties, and growing distrust among Japanese voters might influence the next National Diet elections.

“Rakugo in English” By Dr. Kimie Oshima

CJS is pleased to announce “Rakugo in English: by Dr. Kimie Oshima” which will be held on Friday, September 14 at the UHM Orvis Auditorium.

Rakugo is the traditional Japanese art of comic storytelling. The art form is more than 300 years old and provides a way to teach about Japanese culture and customs through humor. Dr. Oshima, who attended high school and college in the U.S., is an accomplished artist with performances in Japan and around the world (most recently in Tel Aviv). She describes how she turns Japanese rakugo into rakugo in English as “remaking the stories into something that sounds interesting and funny in English.” Knowledge or experience in the art form is not required to understand the performance. Join us for an evening of laughter!

Please see the flyer for details.

The 40th Anniversary of Urasenke Summer Seminar

Photo of Former Governor Ariyoshi

This year marked the 40th anniversary of the Urasenke Summer seminar at UHM.  Roughly 110 guests from Japan, led by Dr. Genshitsu Sen, joined Hawaii tea practitioners for a two-day seminar at the UHM Art Auditorium, sponsored by Outreach College.  Day One featured a presentation by new UHM Chancellor Tom Apple, who laid out his vision for UH Manoa, and Former Governor George Ariyoshi, who described the origins of the East West Center and the connection between Hawaii and the EWC’s core mission. Day Two focused on tea demonstrations, including one by recent UH alumni, and a lecture-demonstration by Noenoe Zuttemesiter on traditional Hawaiian musical instruments and dance.  Participants also enjoyed tea at Jaku-an, and the Imin Center Garden Room, hosted by the UH Tea Club, and Urasenke Association members from Hawaii, Maui, and Kauai.


Shisa Statues Installation Ceremony & Reception

Photo of President Teruo Iwamasa and Chancellor Virginia Hinshaw; photo courtesy of Ms. Tokiko Bazzell

On June 29, the UHM Chancellor’s office, the UHM Library, COS, and CJS held an installation ceremony and reception for the newly installed shisa statues donated by the University of the Ryukyus. More than sixty community members, faculty, and students came to officially welcome the shisa statues to their new location on the UHM campus, between Hamilton Library and Paradise Palms.

Marking the beginning of the evening, the Hawai’inuiakea Protocol Team, the Tuahine Troupe, began with an oli (a Hawaiian chant) to celebrate the friendship between the University of the Ryukyus (UR) and UH.  Honoring this relationship, UR President Teruo Iwamasa (who was visiting UH for the first time) and Chancellor Virginia Hinshaw together put lei’s on the two statues, as seen in the photo above.

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Shīsā Statue Installation Ceremony

Date: Friday, June 29

Time: 4:00-4:15 pm

Location: In between Hamilton Library and Paradise Palms Café on Maile Way at UHM

Commemorating the establishment of the Center for Okinawan Studies at UHM, the University of the Ryukyus is donating an original pair of shīsā (lion-dog) statues to the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa. A traditional talisman of Okinawa, shīsā are guardians who protect against disasters and bring happiness to those they serve. The presence of shīsā on the UHM campus symbolizes friendship and peace between UHM and the University of the Ryukyus. For more information about the shīsā, please see this link.

The University of the Ryukyus and UHM have a long relationship of collaboration on research, joint conferences/symposia, and student exchanges. In 2008, UHM established the Center for Okinawan Studies, the only such research center of its kind outside of Japan. A world-class collection of Okinawan materials (Sakamaki-Hawley Collection) is at UHM Library-partial funding to purchase the original collection from the late English journalist Frank Hawley came from Hawaii’s Okinawan community. For more information on the Center for Okinawan Studies and the Library Okinawa Collection, please go to their respective websites.

Center for Okinawan Studies:
Library Okinawa Collection: