Workshop held at Brussels European Centre: New Perspectives in Japanese Studies Part 2

  • December 13, 2017
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  • Keywords: , Humanities, Literature


From academic year 2013 to 2015 the Graduate School of Humanities at Kobe University ran the “Program for Advancing Strategic International Networks to Accelerate the Circulation of Talented Researchers” supported by the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS). With the vision of “Innovative Japanese Studies through International Cooperation” the Graduate School of Humanities launched collaborative research projects with the University of Oxford, the University of Hamburg, and the Ca’ Foscari University of Venice, dispatching promising young researchers for long term assignments to each university. In order to expand our research network in Europe while maintaining the strong connections formed through this program, in addition to the three universities above, the Graduate School of Humanities also invited researchers from our new partner institutions the University of Trier and the University of Belgrade to join a workshop at the Kobe University Brussels European Centre on November 18 and 19 titled “New Perspectives in Japanese Studies Part 2”. Part 1 was held as an international symposium at the Graduate School of Humanities in August 2017, and was attended by one researcher from each of the three universities in the original program: the University of Oxford, the University of Hamburg and the Ca’ Foscari University of Venice.

Five members of Kobe University participated in the November workshop, including Professor MASUMOTO Hiroko (Dean of the Graduate School of Humanities) and a graduate student. From the five European Universities we welcomed seven members including Professor Bjarke Frellesvig (University of Oxford), Professor Jörg Quenzer (University of Hamburg), and Professor Andreas Regelsberger (University of Trier). With “interdisciplinarity” as our keyword, all participants gave research presentations that examined Japanese literature and culture, philosophy, language and society. Following a lively discussion, the participants brainstormed which areas of Japanese studies our group should look at next as joint research between the five European universities and Kobe University.

The Graduate School of Humanities has traditionally been active in exchange with East Asian countries, but recently we are also increasing the number of important partner institutions in Europe, starting with the University of Oxford. We will continue to use the Brussels European Office in order to strengthen ties with these partner institutions and actively engage in joint research.

(Graduate School of Humanities)