In recent years, the emergence of new undergraduate and graduate studies specializing in Japanese studies has been a constant. An updated study on the situation of Japanese Studies in Spain has recently been published. Since our intervention at the EAJRS Congress in 2004, many things have changed and others not so much. It is time to take stock.
The newly designed course "Japan up Close: Prefecture by Prefecture" at Sofia University acquaints students in depth with the main administrative-territorial unit of Japan - a historical overview of its formation, as well as its contemporary socio-economic image. The relationship between local and central government in Japan as well as the specifics of each prefecture are a good starting point for studying the development of social relations in Japan, much needed to complement, enhance and contextualize the language skills of students and lay the foundation of their future a Japanologists.
The latest trends and future prospects of NII
With a glut of Ph.D. trained researchers seeking ever-fewer tenure-track positions in Japan and the U.S., open access and online, digital resources made available to researchers without regard to their academic affiliation have become ever more crucial to all fields, but the field of Japan studies in particular. In many ways, researchers today have more access to Japan studies materials for free and from anywhere than ever before. Despite this increasingly varied set of resources however, in interviews with 10 unaffiliated researchers, I found that they struggled to conduct research and often felt stymied in the confines of the open-access digital realm.
We would like to continue the panel discussion we had last year. This year, the invited panelists and European librarians will discuss on the theme “how to deliver digital archive contents to the people who need them”.
The reach-out of digital archive contents is very important for European librarians, and although the panel discussion will not present any results, we believe that it will be the germ of some new thoughts and ideas for the listener.
In December 2021, the Historiographical Institute at the University of Tokyo released high-resolution digital images of Shoho's Ryukyu Kuniezu and Wako-zukan, which are included in the Shimazu Family Documents, a national treasure. In this presentation, we will introduce the Ryukyu Kuniezu and the Wako-zukan, as well as the system we have constructed.
In this presentation, I would like to introduce the Japanese Canadian Researchers Directory & Bibliography – one of the key outcomes of the Ours to Tell Project whose primary goal is to ensure adequate representation of Japanese Canadians in the process of telling Japanese Canadian communities’ stories. The directory and bibliography can be used by anyone who expresses an interest in Japanese Canadian history (and other relevant disciplines), but it aspires to be a reference tool for outsiders, and individuals who are responsible for making decisions about policy and funding.
We will describe the trends of digital archives in Japan from 2019 to 2022 and report on the new research data of the National Museum of Japanese History (Rekihaku) and its future.
The collection of early modern Japanese books and manuscripts in the East Asia Department of Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin also contains about fifty handscrolls dating from the Edo-period. They were digitized during a project running from 2010 until 2014 and are freely available online to the public in the Digitized Collections of the library.
In 2004, the Shibusawa Eiichi Memorial Foundation began work on the digitization of the Denki shiryo. The 57 main volumes were made available online in 2016 as part of the Shibusawa Eiichi Denki Shiryo Digital Version and in 2018 work began on making the 10 supplementary volumes available online as well.
Photographs of Shibusawa Eiichi from the 10th supplementary volume were made available online in March 2022 as a result of a research project (“Building a Crowdsourcing Platform for the Annotation and Utilization of Archival Photographs”) by the Shibusawa Eiichi Memorial Foundation and the National Museum of Japanese History in collaboration with scholars in digital humanities.