International Workshop: The Idea of Antiquity in Modern Japanese Religious Culture

International Workshop

"The Idea of Antiquity in Modern Japanese Religious Culture" 近現代日本の宗教文化と「古代」

November 1, 2019 (Friday), 12:00 – 4:00 pm
Porté Seminar Room S250, CGIS South Building, 1730 Cambridge Street

Workshop Description:
Meiji Japan, while advancing toward modernization, at the same time turned its sight toward “Antiquity.” The most representative example of this particular outlook can be found in the Meiji Restoration motto “go back to the times of Emperor Jinmu,” which defined the aims of the new Meiji government. However, how did those post-Meiji Japanese concretely conceive their country’s antiquity, and what kind of images did they associate with it? As an attempt to answer this question, this workshop will discuss the conception of antiquity based on the work of two prominent Japanese authors. The first one is Kokugaku scholar HIRATA Atsutane, who lived in the last period of the Tokugawa Shogunate and had a notable influence both in post-Meiji Shinto theology and in policy for enlightenment of the people during that time. The other one is ANESAKI Masaharu, the scholar who laid the foundations of modern religious studies in Japan. This workshop will also explore the different ways in which Antiquity has been represented artistically in different eras, from Edo period ukiyo-e paintings to contemporary Japanese pop culture. Through these approaches, this workshop will discuss how “antiquity” was understood, imagined, and transmitted within Japan’s contemporary religious culture.


Workshop Schedule:

12:00-12:05:  Welcome Remarks (Prof. Helen Hardacre)

12:05-12:55 「神の姿にみる古代と現代」“The Idea of Antiquity and Modernity in Depiction of Deities”
Prof. Kikuko HIRAFUJI
, Kokugakuin University, Institute for Japanese Culture and Classics and Center for Kojiki Studies

Discussant:  Prof. Jolyon THOMAS, University of Pennsylvania

12:55-1:45  「平田国学における古代の神のリアリティ—近代に向かって—」“The Reality of Ancient Kami in Hirata Kokugaku: Toward Modern Japan”
Prof. Jun ENDO
, Kokugakuin University, Faculty of Shinto Studies and Center for Kojiki Studies

Discussant: Prof. Anne WALTHALL, University of California, Irvine

1:45-2:00 Break

2:00-2:50   「日本宗教史の叙述と「古代」―宗教学の展開との関連において」“The Narrative of the History of Japanese Religions and ‘The Ancient’ in the Development of Religious Studies”
Prof. Seiji HOSHINO
, Kokugakuin University, Institute for Japanese Culture and Classics

Discussant: Prof. Kaoru HAYASHI, Texas State University & 2019-20 RIJS Postdoctoral Fellow

2:50-3:40  「造化三神をめぐる神学の構造と展開」“Theological Frame and Evolutions in the Conception of the Three Creator Deities” 
Prof. Tomoo SAITŌ
, Kokugakuin University, Faculty of Shinto Studies

Discussant: Prof. Trent MAXEY, Amherst College

3:40-4:00    Wrap-up Discussion