[japan@ihj] Hawai`i as Japan’s Paradise—Consuming Images of the Tropics

  • *This event has finished.
  • Date: Wednesday, June 3, 2015, 6:30-9:00 pm
    (*Panel will be preceded by a hula performance at 6:30-6:50)
  • Venue: Iwasaki Koyata Memorial Hall, International House of Japan
  • Language: English (without Japanese interpretation)
  • Admission: 1000 Yen (Students and Non-Japanese:500, IHJ Member:Free) (reservations required)

Tada Osamu (Professor, Hitotsubashi University) /
“Constructing Okinawa as Japan’s Hawai`i”
Tezuka Yoshiharu (Associate Professor, Komazawa University) /
“Hawai`i as Paradise in Japanese Cinema”
Yaguchi Yujin (Professor, University of Tokyo) /
“Searching for Paradise through Hula Performance in Japan”
Christine Yano (Professor, University of Hawai`i) /
“Plucking Paradise: Ukulele Performance in Japan”

Moderator: Christine Yano

Photo:Christine YanoNotions of paradise—harmonious, idyllic contentment—have fueled popular culture throughout history. In many instances paradise lies not in the here and now, but in distant locales and other times (past and future) as part of an escapist regime from everyday life. This panel takes modern Japan as a case in point, and explores the notion of paradise embedded within the images of Hawai`i in different popular culture forms, asking what kind of paradise is this, in what contexts, and to what effects? How is the concept of paradise historically situated as a product of its time? How is paradise as market-driven commodity manufactured, bought, and sold? By exploring the notion of Hawai`i as tropical paradise in far-ranging Japanese contexts from movies to tourism to music and dance, the speakers will frame utopic visions within the geopolitical realities of transnational markets, as well as embedded within the intimacies of people’s lives.
*Participants are encouraged to wear aloha attire.