UHM Students and Faculty at Waseda University

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.

« The panel “Struggle for Our ‘Okinawan Studies’: Viewed from Uchinaa Unai (Okinawan Women) Today,” organized and moderated by Rinda Yamashiro Kayatani, featured papers by three UH students (as well as two participants from other universities):

– Rinda Yamashiro Kayatani (Ph.D. student in Sociology, UHM) presented “Toward Sustainable Self-determination: Okinawan Studies from Indigenous Perspective”

– Chihiro Sakihara (Ph.D. Student in American Studies, UHM) presented “From Unai to Unai: Post-reversion Generation’s Challenges in Continuing History of Unai Festival”

– Megumi Chibana (MA student, Indigenous Politics Program, UHM), unable to attend, had her paper read by panelist Kayatani: “Lessons of Kanaka Maoli: Decolonization of Education”

« The panel “Knowledge,Technology and Transnationality: Re-thinking Hawaii-Okinawa Relations in the Cold War and Post-Cold War Asia-Pasific Contexts,” organized and moderated by Mire Koikari, featured three speakers:

– Mire Koikari (Women’s Studies, UHM) presented “’Helping Others Help Themselves’: Okinawa, Hawaii and Cold War International Technical Interchanges”

– Robert Huey (Center for Japanese Studies, UHM) presented “Okinawan Studies at the University of Hawai‘i: Twice Born”

« The panel “Okinwan Language and Culture Courses and Instructional Materials / Dictionaries Development,” organized by Professor Emerita Kyoko Hijirida, and moderated by UHM Center for Okinawan Studies Director Joyce Chinen, featured (along with a third presenter from another university):

– Stewart Curry (EALL, UHM) presented “Okinawan Reference Works in English”
Stewart CURRY (University of Hawai’i)

– K. Justin Ota (UHM Alumnus; Honolulu Community College) presented “Honolulu Community College ni okeru Okinawago no Kurasu no Kaihatsu”

« The panel “Multiple Views toward the ‘Reversion’: The Issue of Okinawa’s Postwar Status and the Positionality of Okinawans with Transnational/Transborder Experiences- Zaigai dōhō, Beiryū gumi, and Okikyōshoku” included one UH presenter:

– Kinuko Maehara Yamazato (PhD Candidate in Sociology, UHM) presented “Beiryū gumi and the “Reversion”: Identity Formation and Negotiations of the US Educated Okinawans”

« Among individual papers on the “Environment”:

– Lonny Carlile (CJS/Asian Studies Program, UHM) presented “Okinawan Development Policy Discourse: Then and Now”

– David Nguyen (Ph.D. program in Urban Planning, UHM) presented “An Analysis of the Spatial and Temporal Development of Okinawa’s Tourism: Infrastructure and Economy and Outlook at Alternatives for Island Economies”

– Russell Uyeno (Dean of the Communications and Services Programs, Honolulu Community College) joined a colleague from Kyoei University to present “Theoretical and Practical Implications of the Tourism Area Life Cycle for Okinawa and Hawaii: A Comparative Analysis”

« Among individual papers on “Military Bases”

– Nika Nashiro (MA student, Political Science, UHM) presented “What’s Going on Behind Those Blue Eyes? The Perception of Okinawan Women by US Military Personnel in Okinawa”

« The panel “Transborder Resources on Okinawa: From the Past to the Future for Effective and Sustainable Resource Development, Access, and Sharing,” moderated by Tokiko Bazzell included:

– Tokiko Y. Bazzell (UHM Library) presented  “Okinawa Resources in Hawaii: Opportunities and Challenges to Resource Support for Ryukyu/Okinawa Studies”

In addition, the following UH alumni gave presentations:

– Masao Maeshiro (Alumnus, UH Graduate Program in Clinical Studies; recently retired Director of Chubu Hospital) presented “Collaboration of University of Hawaii and Okinawa Prefectural Chubu Hospital: Its History and Development in Past, Present, and Future” in the panel “Knowledge,Technology and Transnationality: Re-thinking Hawaii-Okinawa Relations in the Cold War and Post-Cold War Asia-Pasific Contexts”

– Kyle Ikeda (Ph.D., EALL, UHM; now at the University of Vermont) presented “Spatially Proximate Postmemory: Space, Place and Trauma in Medoruma Shun’s War Fiction” in the panel “Trauma and Violence in Contemporary Fiction from Okinawa”

– Manako Ogawa (MA, American Studies, UHM; now at Reitsumeikan University) presented “The Training and Immigration Programs of Okinawan Fishermen in Hawaii” among individual papers on the topic of Migration.