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Ninth installment of Stanford University–J. F. Oberlin University Commemorative Lecture Series to be held on June 12

The Washoku Boom, at Home and Abroad

The ninth lecture in the Stanford University–J. F. Oberlin University Commemorative Lecture Series will be held from 16:10 to 17:40 on Friday, June 12, in room 6H in Sūteikan, on Machida Campus. The lecturer will be Professor Theodore Bestor, Professor of Anthropology and Director of the Reischauer Institute of Japanese Studies at Harvard University, and the title of his lecture will be “The Washoku Boom, at Home and Abroad.” All students, faculty, and staff are welcome to attend.

How has washoku become such a popular part of the global scene? What does its global popularity mean for washoku in Japan? In this lecture Professor Bestor will examine several dimensions of the ways in which washoku has been promoted at the elite level, via UNESCO recognition in 2013 as an aspect of Global Intangible Cultural Heritage, and he will also look at how food promotion and marketing have created a particular identity for washoku as part of the daily diet.

SpeakerTheodore Bestor
Professor of Social Anthropology, Harvard University
Date and timeFriday, June 12, 2015, from 16:10 to 17:40
LanguageLecture in English—Q&A may be in Japanese
PlaceSūteikan 6th Floor, Conference Room H, Machida Campus

Theodore Bestor, Professor of Social Anthropology and Director of the Reischauer Institute of Japanese Studies at Harvard University, is currently a Fulbright senior scholar in Japan, where he is conducting research on washoku and its recognition by UNESCO. His book Tsukiji: The Fish Market at the Center of the World (California, 2004; Japanese translation: Kirakusha, 2007), an ethnographic study of the world’s largest marketplace for seafood, illuminates the interaction between cultural patterns and institutional structures. He is the co-editor of Doing Fieldwork in Japan (Hawai‘i, 2003, with Victoria Bestor and Patricia Steinhoff) and the Routledge of Handbook of Japanese Culture and Society (Routledge, 2011, with Victoria Lyon and Akiko Yamagata). He is working on a book tentatively entitled Global Sushi that will consider globalization via culinary fashions. Professor Bestor completed the full-time, intensive academic-year program at the Inter-University Center for Japanese Language Studies in 1975 and earned his Ph.D. in Anthropology from Stanford University in 1983. He has served as President of the Association for Asian Studies and as Chair of the Anthropology Department at Harvard.

This lecture series was established within the framework of an Agreement of Academic Cooperation between J. F. Oberlin University and Stanford University. Speakers in the series are prominent non-Japanese scholars who studied, earlier in their careers, at the Inter-University Center for Japanese Language Studies (IUC). Founded in 1963 and administered by Stanford University on behalf of sixteen U. S. and Canadian universities, the IUC is located in the Minato Mirai district of Yokohama.

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