Rashomon. What do you think about Kurosawa's statement that "Human beings are unable to be honest with themselves about themselves. They cannot talk about themselves without embellishing." ? Make a Comment to this posting



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COMMENT:


AUTHOR: Hugh

EMAIL: blackmerh@wlu.edu

IP: 137.113.104.126

URL:


DATE: 10/11/2004 10:33:34 AM

You'll BOTH want to spend some time in the area around DS820-DS882, where there are quite a few books that will ahve something bearing on the topic of what HAPPENED to the samurai during Meiji times. For instance, look at DS881.9 .P94 page 109, where somebody has underlined in GREEN (ugh! tsk!) the nub of the answer. I perscribe a couple of hours of searching through the indexes of books... See DS881.5 S2 for a nice surprise...

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COMMENT:


AUTHOR: Hugh

EMAIL: blackmerh@wlu.edu

IP: 137.113.104.126

URL:


DATE: 10/11/2004 03:27:41 PM

Here's a word I should have known: shizoku

Nicely explained, and worth using as a search term in JSTOR's Asian Studies journals...

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AUTHOR: caspanim

TITLE: Qin Terracotta Warrior Project

STATUS: Publish

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DATE: 10/10/2004 09:30:46 PM

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Michael initially intended to study Ninjas; however, the information he sought was inconsistent and obscure. Therefore, he decided to collaborate with Kristin in her search for information regarding the Qin Terracotta warriors.


Kristin began her project intending to study basic information about the Qin Terracotta Warrior soldiers, but after class on Friday it seemed her topic was too broad. After much discussion, we decided to create an interactive website geared for tourists seeking historical and/or archeological information. The website will be a tourist’s guidebook to the Qin Terracotta warrior site in Xi’an, China, and will provide specific information on different areas within the site.

Kristin and Michael


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Since the creation of project1.html, we have found three additional websites. While a multitude of sites exists, we are attempting to narrow down our sources to the sites most pertinent/informative to our objective.

One of the things we found out since project1.html is how the tomb was discovered. “In 1974 a group of peasants digging a well discovered the greatest archaeological find of the 20th century,” the tomb of Qin Shi Huang (http://www.warriortours.com/cityguides/xian/terra_cotta_army/index.htm ). We also found that “upon ascending the throne at the age of 13 (in 246 BC), Qin Shi Huang, later the first Emperor of all China, had work begun on his mausoleum. It took 11 years to finish” (http://www.travelchinaguide.com/attraction/shaanxi/xian/terra_cotta_army/). Filled with life-size warriors and horses, Qin Shi Huang’s tomb is divided into three sections, spanning over 16,300 square meters (http://www.travelchinaguide.com/attraction/shaanxi/xian/terra_cotta_army/).


Throughout the next few weeks, we are planning on furthering our research on the Qin Terracotta warriors by continuing to find/read websites, as well as journal articles and books. Our goal is to end the term with a website that is a culmination of our research and will benefit those seeking information pertaining to the Qin Terracotta warriors. If these “web surfers” who come across our site eventually see the tomb for themselves, we hope that the information on our website will enhance their experience.

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COMMENT:


AUTHOR: Hugh

EMAIL: blackmerh@wlu.edu

IP: 137.113.104.126

URL:


DATE: 10/11/2004 09:21:48 AM

One of the most interesting aspects of this subject for MY money is that it seems to be less an archaeological discovery than a POLITICAL event. Take a look at Uses of the past: Archaeology in the Service of the State which has a section about halfway through on Qin. It's such a PR thing, so very National Geographic...

Have you looked at

Cotterell, Arthur.

The first emperor of China : the greatest archeological find of our time

DS747.9.C47 C67 1981.


and
The First Emperor of China [videorecording] = Le Premier Empereur de Chine / National Film Board of Canada

(video) DS747.9.C47 F57 1989.


and I think there's something in China Pictorial (LL1 in Leyburn) from 1981 or so

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COMMENT:

AUTHOR: Carlos

EMAIL: spahtc@wlu.edu

IP: 137.113.162.121

URL:

DATE: 10/12/2004 04:44:21 PM



I'm in a Chinese history class right now and we've talked about the Terracotta Warriors a good bit. I don't know how much you know about it, but in addition to the warriors, the emperor had his entire tomb built to be a microcosm of his state. There are underground rivers (I think of mercury) and other things as well. It might also be interesting to analyze why an emperor of the first Legalist empire left such an elaborate legacy whereas that left by the preceding Confucian empires lift little of this magnitude. It seems like these are all things that tourists would like to know.

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AUTHOR: letisha

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DATE: 10/10/2004 11:13:15 PM

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At this point, I believe I am going to focus on the problems faced by Japanese youth as shown in anime. Primary this will deal with how different characters are represented (such as how they view themselves and the world around them). I think to do this I will review anime I've already seen, and look around for other good examples. I will search through a couple of good books I've found that will probably deal with, at least, concepts of humility and self-esteem.

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Just as in America there are billions of different cartoons and comic books, and several different companies who produce them so to do a project simply on anime is obviously a little broad. So I since I needed to narrow my topic down I did some looked over the sites I found before a little closer to see what I could find that was more specific. Since I do what to have some sort of cultural statement in my project I am thinking that perhaps I will look into different types by genre (which are cut up into categories by not only topic but also sex) on wikipedia it said that anime directed at just men or just women are rare so it might be interesting to see what those anime are like. However…that wasn’t really working out. So I found a site that gave me some interesting ideas about religion and social awareness in anime. A lot of the anime I’ve seen has had some religious context such as Neon Genesis Evangelion and this web site said, that apparently this isn’t too rare
“Of course, Judeo-Christian elements are popular, even pervasive in anime. Indeed, some productions, such as Revolutionary Girl Utena and Neon Genesis Evangelion, are in terms of plot nothing but re-envisionings of Judeo-Christian myth. And to somebody brought up in the Judeo-Christian worldview, they seem really strange.
And I’ve heard that in general, while the Japanese do have a lot of religious ceremonies, on the whole they are not very religious so I think that may be an interesting route to take. Also, I’ve noticed that there is a lot of questing for the concept of self or for inclusivness (like in the anime Naruto) with a particular group.
Survey results of students taken in 1983 indicated that Japanese students were generally less satisfied with themselves than American students. This attitude of lower self concept seems to be a common trait amongst characters”
I think that this may be the best road to take.
Quoted from:

Lee, Jeff. Anime Project. http://www.umich.edu/~anime/history_youthattitude.html.


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AUTHOR: alex

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DATE: 10/11/2004 12:17:15 AM

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I have recently decided to join forces with Tim Blair and do our project on the Yakuza. Our ideas have evolved through deciding what the most fun things to research would be out of the surplus of information we found. We also thought more about how we wanted to organize our findings into an effective project. We think that our project will definitely involve an in-depth look into the Yakuza and its practices and a focused look at one or two of the social problems they have caused and how they have affected Japanese society. The aspects of the Yakuza’s dealings (besides the dynamics of their own subculture) that lend themselves most readily to an anthropology project are, as we mentioned, their involvement in the government and economy through blackmail, force, and extortion, and their control of prostitution. Tim’s post does a good job outlining our preliminary ideas, and I think that this project has a lot of potential to be fun.

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Since we have to spend such a huge amount of time on information collection (this post shows so of it), we are currently looking to narrow down our focus. He beat me to the blog posting, and to the library, so I decided to spend a lot of time on the internet looking for sites that could give us a good history of the Yakuza and their current actions. Google yielded over 300,000 sites that mentioned the Yakuza, but a lot of them are movie reviews, video game sites, and sites like the ones Hugh described on Thursday when we talked about ninja-geeks. I spent a lot of time weeding through the internet sources and found these five the most helpful so far:

This site provides a detailed history of the Yakuza

This site has some pretty interesting Yakuza info. It provides accounts of Yakuza actions in the past (including recent things). This site will be helpful to us when we want to talk about Yakuza current info, especially and article that describes how they Yakuza have “changed more in the last ten years than they did in the entire post-war period.” The rumour that the Yakuza were declining is actually a myth, this article reports. The members have simply “deep, deep, deep under-cover. They're doing their best to blend in with the local population and your average yakuza today probably looks more like a salariman or freeter than a character from a Beat Takeshi movie, they are finding new sources of income, gangs are restructuring, and they are operating in a legal and economic environment that is radically different from that of ten years ago.”
bob the builder

This article shows how prevalent the Yakuza are in Japanese society. The children’s television show Bob the Builder was to be altered before being shown in Japan because his animated character was given a fifth finger. In Yakuza tradition, members have their pinky fingers chopped down/off when they commit an offense or a disappointment toward the gang. Japan did not want their children thinking that their TV idol, Bob the Builder, was a member of the dangerous Yakuza gang.


From the Article:

“Television favourite Bob the Builder is to have his fingers doctored for the Japanese market - because he looks like a gangster.

In Japan the country's most feared mafia - the Yakuza - cut off their little fingers as a sign they can be trusted and have strength of character. “
Further on Finger Cutting and a more gory Yakuza tradition
We have talked about our direction for this project since project1.html and we have what we feel is a pretty good prelimary idea about how to proceed. We want to examine Yakuza as a subculture in itself and explore how it affected Japanese culture since its beginning. Since our topic will lend itself to some fun, multimedia research, we plan on getting and watching a lot of movies that depict the Yakuza, reading books about the history of the Yakuza and scanning for articles that give us an idea of the Yakuza’s current actions with an eye for the anthropology of the group.
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COMMENT:


AUTHOR: Valery

EMAIL: yankovv@wlu.edu

IP: 137.113.20.126

URL:


DATE: 10/13/2004 01:35:11 PM

What you might also consider researching would be the influence of Yakuza outside of Japan. There are many sources of information which indicate a strong Yakuza pressence in many big western cities, especially in the US. You might be interested to find out information about the actual Yakuza's share of global organized crime.

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AUTHOR: megan

TITLE: Elephant Project

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DATE: 10/11/2004 12:20:14 AM

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So far.. I have been trying to gather more information and to figure out which angle I want to approach this assignment from. I am leaning towards the art/literature/cultural approach because I think it will be iteresting and it deals more with the human side of the elephant story (important since this is an anthropology class!) I think this approach can also encompass some of the ecological/historical issues because they will be reflected in the art and the writing.

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Assignment 5:
I am really not sure which angle I want to take on Elephants in Asia. I feel that focusing on them in the art, literature, and culture of South East Asia is more along the anthropologic lines of our class. But I think that the shrinking habitat angle is also really interesting in that it is creating a conflict between people and elephants - driving them into greater contact with one another and creating a dangerous situation - hence people living in trees in the Time article!
I really am more interested in the artistic/literary side of the picture so I feel myself leaning in that direction. I feel like taking that angle will let me draw in lots of other stuff to explain what is going on culturally because that is usually a result of history, economics, and ecological factors. I think the project will be more interesting and relevant if I tackle it from that angle. I also feel like there is a huge range of material to look at from the cultural angle which will help me find things and piece them together in some way.
I have started to look through the Mark Elvin book The Retreat of the Elephants (Thanks Hugh!). The second chapter- "Humans v. Elephants: The Three Thousand Years War" is pretty cool. The great thing about this chapter is that it has quotes about elephants from historical literature - It is a kind of documentation of the conflict between elephants and the Chinese people. The author cites various reasons way elephants retreated from many of their historical Asian homelands (including climate changes) but hints that, "The most obvious explanation is that it was the result of a protracted was with human beings which the elephants lost. The pattern of their withdrawal in time and in space was, so to speak, the reverse image of the expansion and intensification of Chinese settlement. Chinese farmers and elephants do not mix" (Elvin 9).
In the next couple of weeks I plan to read some more of the Elvin book, to take a look at the books and the movie that I found in the library, to look for more sources on the web, and hopefully narrow down exactly what I want to focus on now that I think I have found an angle to approach the subject.
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COMMENT:


AUTHOR: Shari

EMAIL: boyces@wlu.edu

IP: 137.113.15.7

URL:


DATE: 10/13/2004 03:44:18 AM

This is probably very random. But when I heard your topic about elephants in class, my first thought was of a Road Rules episode I once saw. Maybe you saw it...in the episode they visited an East Asian country(don't remember where exactly) but the team had to work with elephants that painted pictures using their trunks - "art by elephants". These pictures were sold for some sort of charity. I gather that the elephants are very significant in this particular East Asian culture. Like you mentioned, art is probably a good way to approach your topic of elephants. I don't know if this will help your search in finding more information...but it was just a thought I had.

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AUTHOR: arielle

TITLE: More on Gender Deviance in Japan

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DATE: 10/11/2004 01:03:50 AM

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I have read into some topics within a couple of the books I am using to investigate homosexuality in Japan. These are a couple of them:


Within Urban Japan: Its Foundations and Growth, there is the topic of the agrarian and agricultural lifestyles - there are obviously different types of societies (pre/post-industrial, agrarian, agricultural, etc), and each has their own unique perceptions of gender roles and those who deviate from those roles. For example, males and females tend to be more equal in agrarian and agricultural societies because these communities need the participation of both in order to succeed. In a post-industrial society, however, gender roles are not only different, but are also very unequal - for American culture, this is because of the established roles of males as the breadwinner and females as the homemaker. Furthermore, each has its own ideas of how connected sex (a biological notion) and gender (a societal notion) are. How gender deviants are perceived is very dependent on how the society in which they live relates sex to gender.
Japanese Americans: The Evolution of a Subculture serves more as a means of comparing societal views - in general - between those that actually live in Japan, and those who live in a different country - America, in this case - but still have some of the same ideals as those who reside in Japan.

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COMMENT:


AUTHOR: Hugh

EMAIL: blackmerh@wlu.edu

IP: 137.113.104.126

URL:


DATE: 10/11/2004 08:56:56 AM

One book you should be sure to look at is Ian Buruma's A Japanese mirror : heroes and villains of Japanese culture (Leyburn-Level 4 DS821 .B796 1984b)

It's 20 years old, but still one of the clearest introductions I know. It's also published as

Behind the Mask: On Sexual Demons, Sacred Mothers, Transvestites, Gangsters and Other Japanese Cultural Heroes

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AUTHOR: julianne

TITLE: Taiwanese Aboriginal Tribes

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DATE: 10/11/2004 01:16:51 AM

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Thus far I have read some articles and skimmed some books regarding Taiwanese aboriginal tribes. Taiwan: A New History, by Rubenstein, discusses differing origin theories of these different aboriginal tribes. Some theorists, like Hendrik Kern and George Mackay, support the Southern Origins Theory. They believe early inhabitants came to Taiwan from Malaysia as is suggested by some aboriginal legends, customs, physical features, and currents. Other theorists believe in the Northern Origin Theory suggesting early aboriginal tribes originated from China and Japan. . .

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Through reading these arguments I agree with the remainder of the theorists who believe that the Taiwanese Aboriginal tribes were a result of the combination of the two origin theories, making the island very unique and diverse in Asian prehistory.
This same book continued to discuss Taiwanese aboriginal tribes still existing today. Rubenstein noted that most Taiwanese natives today have aboriginal ancestors, which I found pretty cool considering the amount of globalization and western contact Taiwan has encountered within the past few centuries.
In another book, Culture and Customs of Taiwan, by Davidson and Reed, I found that many Taiwanese aboriginal tribes exhibited many similarities. Most of them were organized into egalitarian villages, had monogamous marriage, maintained significant kinship and non-kinship distinctions, and practiced headhunting- which is interesting. Davidson and Reed noted that headhunting was a significant part of establishing prestige in almost all tribes, regardless of language or geographical location.
In this book I also found reference to the Nine Tribes Aboriginal Village, “where experts have reconstructed the physical components of villages associated with all the enduring aboriginal groups,” (Davidson, 4). I am interested in looking up more about this because it was constructed in 1986, and may lead to more information about perceptions and influences of these cultures today. I found these sites ( Tribes of Taiwan , Nine Tribes ) while looking on a9 for more information that may be of help later.
Researching more about the “Nine Tribes Aboriginal Village” may help me learn more about the importance of these tribal cultures today. I think this will be a good way to narrow my investigations. I plan to look at the remaining Taiwanese aboriginal tribes and examine their place in contemporary Taiwanese society.
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COMMENT:


AUTHOR: joe

EMAIL: coochj@wlu.edu

IP: 137.113.75.125

URL:


DATE: 10/12/2004 04:17:04 PM

This is a very interesting topic. It is important to think about who was there before the nationalist chinese were forced onto Taiwan from mainland china. This struck my interest because it reminded me of a friend from home whos grandfather worked very high up in chang kai chek?'s organization, and fled to taiwan with the nationalists. This friend would visit her relatives there and say she was going to China. Certainly the refugees from mainland china have maintained their identity as chinese, and i wonder what effect this has had on the aboriginal population. Were those escaping a dictatorial regime unjust to the aboriginal tribes??

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COMMENT:


AUTHOR: Hugh

EMAIL: blackmerh@wlu.edu

IP: 69.68.126.46

URL:


DATE: 10/12/2004 06:38:11 PM

There's a whole other intermediate chapter, as immigrants arrived from Fujian province over several hundred years and gradually pushed the aboriginal peoples further into the mountains. Coxinga (more properly Cheng Cheng-kung = Zheng Chenggong) is one of the villains of the piece... but there are others whose activities on the island have been significant, including the Portuguese, the Dutch, and the Japanese.

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COMMENT:


AUTHOR: Ted

EMAIL: archert@wlu.edu

IP: 137.113.64.44

URL:


DATE: 10/13/2004 09:51:09 AM

Your topic is very interesting and out of tall the project topics in the class this one sounds more "anthro-like". I think it would be interesting to know where the Taiwanese aboriginals believed their ancestory to be from since studies suggest either Malaysia or China or perhaps both. Also you probably know this, but it would be good to focus on some important differences that may have caused a clash between aboriginals and the later Taiwanese immigrants.


-Ted

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AUTHOR: dan

TITLE: Drugs in Japan

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