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Culture and Society Course (taught in English)

2021年3月24日更新

Course Contents

【Lectures】 Choose ONE sub-course from the below (two credits)

Sub-course 1: Gender, sexuality and globalization in contemporary Japan

Sub-course 2: Japanese society and health

Sub-course 3: Natural Sciences and Technology

 Sub-course:Gender, sexuality and globalization in contemporary Japan

Globalization is transforming societies around the world. Yet its consequences vary significantly across regions and between men and women. Through lectures in a range of science, social science and humanities disciplines, this course explores the myriad ways through which globalization is reshaping gender and sexuality in contemporary Japanese culture, society, politics and economy.

Date/Time(JST)
【Zoom】
Lecturer/Topics
Monday, July 26th
9:00 am - 10:30 am
Fumie OHASHI

Gender, Sexuality and Migration in Japan

Migration is one of the most significant aspects of globalization.

Japan has sent its people overseas throughout modern history and has accepted many migrants both in the past and present, even though the government officially claims that it does not have an immigration policy. Especially in the last few decades, Japan has witnessed a phenomenon known as the “feminization of international migration,” which will be one of the key topics of our class. We will explore Japan’s globalized social relations by focusing on gender and sexuality.

Tuesday, July 27th
9:00 am - 10:30 am

 
Myles CARROLL

Globalization, Gender and the Transformation of Japan's Post-war Employment Regime

In the context of globalization, Japan's political, economic and social

structures have undergone profound changes in recent decades. In particular, economic globalization and neoliberalism have significantly destabilized Japan's traditional economic and social system, in ways that have brought about decades of economic stagnation, increased inequality, and a demographic crisis. This lecture will explore the

challenges globalization has posed for Japan's employment and welfare model and the impacts of these challenges for women in particular. 

Thursday, July 29th
9:00 am - 10:30 am

Rie HOGETSU

Gender and Health in Contemporary Japan

This class aims to examine the relationship between gender and health status primarily in the West and Japan. We will discuss how social and cultural factors contribute to health inequalities between the sexes and examine the relationship between gender-related health behaviors and health status. Considering health through the lens of gender enables a deeper understanding of health issues in contemporary societies.

Friday, July 30th

9:00 am - 10:30 am

Kazuyoshi CHIBA

Reproductive Biology and Technology

In this class, I will discuss the biological reason why sexual conflict occurs between females and males. Next, I will outline medical procedures of assisted reproductive technology such as in vitro fertilization and intracytoplasmic sperm injection and discuss how such medical treatment affects humankind.

Monday, August 2nd
9:00 am - 10:30 am

Yoko TOTANI

Gender Representation in Contemporary Japanese Culture

This course will examine gender representation in contemporary Japanese culture (representational culture and art, including subcultures). Students will watch visual materials (images, articles, videos, etc.) distributed in advance, analyze them, considering gender representation and sexuality issues in contemporary Japanese society, and then discuss them in the online class.

Tuesday, August 3rd
9:00 am - 10:30 am
Satoshi TANAHASHI

Gender Issues in Japan as seen through the Five Scapes of Global Cultural Flow

In this lecture, we will focus on gender issues in contemporary Japan

from a socio-cultural perspective while using the theory of "five scapes of global cultural flow," which was originally proposed by cultural anthropologist, Arjun Appadurai. Based on observations of flows of people, technology, ideas, finance, and media in regard to various topics, we will discuss globalization, glocalization, and relocalization of gender in contemporary Japan.

*For those who will participate in "Gender The first class 

Sub-course: Natural Sciences and Technology 

Research results of natural sciences lead to new technology, and the development of technology supports discoveries in natural sciences. This subcourse provides lectures on different areas of natural sciences: physics, chemistry, biology, and computer science. They will give some opportunity to think about the relationship between natural sciences and technology.

Date/Time(JST)
【Zoom】
 Lecturer/Topics

Monday, July 26th

6:00 pm - 7:30 pm

Aya TANATANI

Medicinal chemistry research and drug discovery

Medicinal chemistry is a significant research field for drug discovery, and its purpose is the development of novel bioactive molecules, including the design, chemical synthesis and biological evaluation. In this lecture, the speaker will show the fundamentals of medicinal chemistry and also our research on the development of the nuclear receptor ligands as an example of the medicinal chemistry research in academia.

Tuesday, July 27th

6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
 
Rumi KONDO

Introduction to DNA sequence analyses

DNA sequences play an important role in determining how organisms function and how they evolved. Biological databases of increasingly broad range of organisms are now publicly available used to predict function, origin and relationship of unknown DNA sequence.  This course will introduce you to the world of sequence analyses by searching the DNA sequence database, retrieving sequence data, aligning the sequences to determine how each sequence differs, and constructing phylogenetic trees to estimate the relationship of DNA sequences

Wednesday, July 28th

6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
 
Hiromu MONAI

How to make your brain smarter

Astrocytes are a kith nd of glial cell, and for a long time, we thought they are just supporting cells for neurons, such as maintenance of the extracellular environment and energy supply to neurons. But now we know they are doing more than that. Our lab has developed a system to observe both neuronal and astrocytic activities using calcium fluorescence imaging in living mice. When we electrically stimulate the brain with a weak direct current, calcium levels in astrocytes go up, which subsequently makes the transmission between neurons more efficient and enhances the mice's sensory functions. But detectable neuronal activities didn’t show any obvious changes during stimulations. Also, animals with more developed intelligence and cognitive functions, like cats or humans, have more astrocytes per neuron. That is why we think astrocytes are essential for brain functions

Thursday, July 29th

6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Nathanael Aubert-Kato

Molecular robotics: programming matter at the nano- and micro-scale

Molecular robotics is an emerging research field that focuses on designing specific interactions at the molecular level. By mixing carefully created molecules, we can perform computation, actuation (movement) and structural assembly at the nano- and micro-scale. This lecture will give a brief overview of the field and of the methods used for designing those systems.

Friday, July 30th

6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Tsubasa Kohyama

Data science in the atmosphere

Weather and climate serve as suitable examples of data science in our daily lives. Because we have to deal with a tremendous amount of data in atmospheric sciences, state-of-the-art information technology may lead us to deeper understandings of nature. In this lecture, the speaker will show some examples of how we could understand nature of the atmosphere from the view point of physical science, and some possible ways to apply computer science to our problems.

Monday, August 2nd

6:00 pm -9:00 pm
Takanori KONO

Probing atomic and subatomic structures with scattering experiments

Development of modern science including physics, chemistry and biology owes much to technological advancements to probe structures at the atomic scale. Experimental study of the molecular and crystal structure, or even subatomic (nuclear) structure relies on scattering experiments. In scattering experiments, one detects how light or particle beam changes energy or direction when passing through the material or colliding with the target particle. It is a non-trivial task to relate the measured data to the microscopic structure of the system. Here, the theoretical modeling and data analysis techniques become crucial. In this seminar, I explain some concepts necessary to describe the microscopic world, basics of particle scattering taking into account the wave-like nature of quantum mechanical particles and analysis methods used for the interpretation of data.

Sub-course:Japanese society and health 

Japan has an excellent reputation for its longevity and the lowest crime rate in the world. Behavioral, social, and geographical factors might contribute to them. In this course, local Japanese foods are introduced from the perspective of geography. We also discuss how Japanese nutrition policies and physical activity level are related to their health status. As for social factors, Japanese labor market and social protection system as well as crime, punishment, and rehabilitation in Japan are explored.

Date/Time(JST)

【Zoom】
 Lecturer/Topics

Monday, July 26th 

4:00 pm - 7:30 pm

Izumi UEHARA

Memory and Life Script

There are several types of memory. Among them, autobiographical memory has recently attracted attention, because this memory is deeply related with the individual personal life although its contents are considerably affected by life script. Life script refers to the semantic knowledge about life events shared among members of a society. We will discuss them in relation to daily and cultural events

Tuesday, July 27th
6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Friday, July 30th
7:40 pm - 9:10 pm
Nobuko NAGASE

Japanese labor market and social policy

 The lecture will be about Japanese labor market and social protection system. I will talk about the features of the so called Japanese employment practices and the change in recent years, the effect of globalization, technological change as well as the population structural change caused by declining birth rate and population aging.  I will also give a short overview of Japanese social protection system, the public pension, the long-term employment insurance, and public health insurance.  I will look at the labor practice and social protection system from the view point of gender equality. I will discuss how the system has secured relatively good access to social insurance and better income for both gender in the past few decades while not successful in reducing the very large gender wage gap. 

Wednesday, July 28th
6:00 pm - 9:10 pm
Julien Tripette

Physical activity, health and aging: comparison between Japan and some selected countries

Japanese people are among the healthiest persons in the world. In the present lecture, we will examine Japan-specific factors related to physical behaviors, and see how these factors may contribute to the prevention and control of non-communicable diseases, as well as to healthy aging. We will discuss and identify similarities and differences between Japan and some selected countries.

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Thursday, July 29th
6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Masaru TAKAHASHI

Crime, punishment, and offender rehabilitation in Japan

It is well known that Japan has the lowest crime rate in the world. Despite such low rate, survey shows that the Japanese public’s fear of crime has been growing. In this class, we will discuss on crime, punishment, and offender rehabilitation in Japan, especially focusing on what works for reducing recidivism based on empirical research.

Friday, July 30th
6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Naoko HASEGAWA

Local Japanese foods from the perspective of geography

The Japanese archipelago is long and narrow from a southern area with a subtropical climate to a northern area with a subarctic climate. The Japanese archipelago is formed by tectonic plate subduction, this caused uplift of terrain. With considerable precipitation, the erosion over the terrain makes rugged mountains. These conditions make many varieties of natural environments, including many natural disasters. Moreover, these diversities of nature give us the many varieties of local cuisine and local specialties consequently. In this class, we will explore several local Japanese foods related from the perspective of geography, in other words, from the perspective of the Japanese nature and human activities

Monday, August 2nd

6:00 pm - 9:10 pm

Noriko SUDO

Japan’s nutrition policy and nutrition in disasters

From the postwar devastation, Japan became the healthiest country in the world within a short period. Some say “Japan achieved a good health status as a result of economic development.” However, Japan had been promoting its nutrition policy even before the economic growth. In this lecture, I will review the history and three important elements in Japan’s nutrition policy.

【Project Works】 (2 credits)

Leadership in a multicultural environment

Leadership is a skill that is learnable, and it is needed more than ever in this world that changes so constantly. However, it turns difficult to acquire leadership skills when it is in a multicultural environment. Japan is experiencing a new phase in terms of internationalization. The number of foreign citizens is increasing these years, and the government is also accelerating this phenomenon by taking policies that allow many foreign workers to come to Japan. Leadership is what Japan needs to maintain sustainable development in diverse fields such as education, the labor market, local society, and so on. In this class, students are going to learn about the immigrational situation of Japan, and they will work thinking about what is important to a multicultural nation to keep harmony.

Class evaluation:

評価

Schedule:

21 June

Self-introduction

Pair Work

25 June

My University

Pair Work

28 June

Group Meeting

Group Work

2 July

Project Proposal

Group Work

9 July

Mid-term presentation video

Group Work

12-16 July

Online session with the Lecturer

Group Work

21 July

Japanese Affairs

All members

23 July

Final presentation video

Group Work

24 July

Special Lecture

All members

31 July

Special Lecture

All members

5-6 August

Q&A Session

All members

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