Theories and Methods in Japanese Studies: Current State and Future Developments
In February 2006, more than 30 leading scholars in Japanese Studies gathered at Bonn University to discuss various facets of the current state of this field and its future directions. The lectures and discussions have been assembled in a proceedings volume, which opens with a paper on the character of modernization in Japanese society based on the keynote lecture by R.P. Dore, the doyen of Japanese social studies. This volume also features papers on anthropology, Ryukyuan and Ainu studies, and the perception of Japan and Japanese culture by the West as reflected in various fields of study. The dominant theme running through the contributions is the methodological and theoretical evaluation of different approaches and the validity of their results. These papers delineate the major directions in which Japanese Studies must proceed in order to fulfill their mission of furthering intercultural communication by interpreting Japanese culture and society.