Ryokan: Mobilizing Hospitality in Rural Japan

April 16, 1:00pm - 2:30pm
Mānoa Campus, Moore Hall 258 and ZOOM Add to Calendar

Kurokawa Onsen is a rare bright spot in Japan’s countryside. Its two dozen traditional inns (ryokan) annually host hundreds of thousands of guests who admire its landscape, experience its hospitality, and soak in its hot springs. As a result, these ryokan have enticed village youth to return home to take over successful family businesses and revive the community. What does it take to produce this family business and one of Japan’s most relaxing spaces, and who does the day-to-day labor of hospitality? In this talk, I share findings from a year spent welcoming guests, carrying luggage, scrubbing baths, cleaning rooms, washing dishes, and talking with co-workers and owners about their jobs, relationships, concerns, and aspirations. I share how Kurokawa’s ryokan mobilize hospitality to create a rural escape, emphasizing the gendered work or hospitality, as well as the generational work of ryokan owners vs. the daily embodied work of their employees.

Ticket Information
RSVP at bit.ly/uhmcjs_seminars

Event Sponsor
Center for Japanese Studies, Mānoa Campus

More Information
Center for Japanese Studies, (808) 956-2669, cjs@hawaii.edu, http://linktr.ee/uhmcjs

Share by email