Chair's Greetings — Fall 2014

CJS Chair Steven Vogel

CJS Chair
Steven Vogel

Dear Colleagues and Friends of CJS:

Welcome to the fall semester of 2014-15 academic year! We have some great events lined up for the fall, and we have big plans for the spring as well.

We are delighted to report that the Center for Japanese Studies received a gift from the Trust of Masako Martha Suzuki in 2013 to continue the promotion of educating students and the general public about Japanese history, culture and arts as well as the Japanese-American experience immediately before, during and after World War II. Mrs. Suzuki was attending UC Berkeley in 1941 when she was incarcerated at the Tanforan Detention Center. She completed her degree in Minnesota, but she remained a loyal Cal alum. She worked as a microbiologist at UC Berkeley upon returning back to California after the war, and later joined the family business, the Takahashi Trading Company. She and her sister, Tomoye "Tami" Takahashi, were awarded the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Rays from the Japanese Government for re-introducing Japanese crafts and mingei products in the United States, in addition to promoting Japanese culture, and supporting public education on Japanese-American history.

We are moving into the second year (of three) for the Institutional Project Support Grant from the Japan Foundation supporting graduate programs in Japanese studies. We had a very successful first year with a new pro-seminar, a graduate conference, two field research training trips, and increased graduate student fellowship support. This year, Daniel O’Neill will offer the pro-seminar in spring 2015, and Dana Buntrock and Junko Habu will lead the field research training trips in summer 2015.

We kick off the year with two major events. Professor Junko Habu is collaborating with our partners at the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) on a conference on "Long-Term Stability Through Place-Based, Small-Scale Economies." And Professors Beth Berry and Marcia Yonemoto are organizing a symposium on "The Japanese Family in the Early Modern Period." In addition, Beth Cary and Fred Schodt will present their analysis of the continuing allure of Hayao Miyazaki; Akihiko Tanaka will report on international politics in East Asia; Roland Kelts and his collaborators will discuss contemporary fiction and poetry from Japan and the US; and Jordan Sand will consider Tokyo as a model of a megacity.

This year we welcome our fourth Shinjo Ito Post-Doctoral Fellow, Michaela Mross of Georg-August-Universität Göttingen. We also have several new visiting scholars: Norihiko Ogawa, an Associate Professor of Business Administration from Hosei University; Yoshikazu Nakada, a Professor of Japanese Political Thought from Gakushuin University; Zhaohui Bu of the Foreign Language Department at Guangxi University; and Chiyuki Kumakura, Professor Emeritus from Kinjo Gakuin University.

We invite you to become a part of our efforts to promote the further development of Japanese Studies at UC Berkeley. There are many ways to participate, and all levels of contribution are welcome. A few examples of how you can support this important institute and ensure its longevity include: Donations to the Center's Endowment; Gifts for Endowed Chairs and Professorships; and Naming Opportunities for Student Fellowships. Please feel free to contact CJS if you wish to make a donation.

I look forward to seeing you at some of the many events we will host over the coming year.


Steven Vogel