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Culinary Culture & Gastronomy in Japanese Cinema
Japanese Taster for Schools Programme Volunteer Training Day 2017
WHAT ARE WE TRYING TO CONNECT? Japanese Identity and Desire to Pass on the Language and Culture among Japanese Diaspora
Japan Foundation at Japan Matsuri 2017 new
Ryoji Ikeda - Test Pattern Live
Japanese Language Proficiency Test (JLPT) December 2017 new
Jiro Takamatsu: The Temperature of Sculpture
International Workshop on Reflective Transitions of Politics in Japanese Art
Call for Papers: Ecologies of Knowledge and Practice - Japanese Studies and the Environmental Humanities
BAJS Workshop: Meiji Japan in Global History
British Museum presents: Hokusai

Culinary Culture & Gastronomy in Japanese Cinema   org

Back by popular demand, join us for a delectable selection of Japanese films exploring how cuisine is an important part of not only Japan's culture, but also its cinema. Make sure you don't come hungry!

 Wed, 23 Aug | Courthouse Cinema, London

A Tale of Samurai Cooking: A True Love Story,  6.30pm (Fully Booked)

Great cook Haru marries into a family of legendary "Kitchen Samurai", who have served the lords of Kaga for many generations with their wonderful cuisine. While her new husband and successor to the family is a master of the sword, his kitchen-knife skills leave a lot to be desired. Haru vows to make her husband a superb samurai chef and starts to teach him the art of cuisine. Based on a true story.

Dir. Yuzo Asahara, 2013, 122 min, English subtitles, (U)

 Thu, 24 Aug | Courthouse Cinema, London

The Chef of the South Polar, 6.30pm (Fully Booked)

At a research facility located in Antarctica, it's Chef Nishimura's job to dish up delicious meals for his colleagues using limited ingredients available - soon enough the much-anticipated meals become the only thing keeping them from going crazy! Based on the autobiographical essays by Jun Nishimura, Shuichi Okita serves up a visual feast for the eyes, combining elements of comedy and pathos.

Dir. Shuichi Okita, 2009, 125 min, English subtitles, (12A)

  Sat, 26 Aug | Rich Mix, London

Extra screening: A Tale of Samurai Cooking: A True Love Story,  12.00pm

Due to extremely popular demand, we've added a repeat screening of A Tale of Samurai Cooking: A True Love Story at Rich Mix on Saturday, 26 August 2017 at 12:00pm. Tickets were quickly snapped up for the film's first showing - book now to avoid disappointment!

Dir. Yuzo Asahara, 2013, 122 min, English subtitles, (U)

Sweet Bean [An], 12.45pm (Fully Booked)

Struggling food vendor Sentaro finds himself confronted with Tokue, an odd but sympathetic elderly lady looking for work. After reluctantly accepting, it's not long before Tokue proves to have an extraordinary gift when it comes to making "an" - the sweet red bean paste filling used in his dorayaki pancakes. A tale of culinary redemption by acclaimed director Naomi Kawase.

Dir. by Naomi Kawase, 2015, 113 min, English subtitles, (PG)

Tampopo, 3.15pm (Fully Booked)

Juzo Itami's rapturous "ramen western" follows an eccentric band of culinary ronin who guide the widow of a noodle-shop owner on her quest for the perfect recipe. Serving up a bowl of adventure seasoned with offbeat comedy sketches and the exploits of a gastronome gangster, Tampopo remains one of the most mouthwatering examples of food on film.

Dir. by Juzo Itami, 1985, 109 min, English subtitles, (15)

 Booking: These screenings are free to attend but booking is essential. For details of how to book your place, please click here

Date: 23 August 2017 - 26 August 2017

23 & 24 August: Courthouse Cinema, 19-21 Great Marlborough Street, London, W1F 7HL
26 August: Rich Mix, 35-47 Bethnal Green Road, London E1 6LA

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Japanese Taster for Schools Programme Volunteer Training Day 2017   org

We are delighted to announce that the next Training Day for existing and prospective volunteers of our Japanese Taster for Schools (JTS) Programme will take place this September!

About the JTS Programme

Can you speak Japanese? Are you keen to promote the language to young people around the UK? If so, the Japan Foundation needs YOU!

JTS volunteers carry out school visits across the UK to introduce students at any level to the Japanese language. One of the main purposes of JTS is to give schools that do not teach Japanese the opportunity to find out what it is like to learn the language and to provide them with further information should they wish to start offering Japanese.

By joining the JTS Programme you will be a member of a UK-wide network of over 300 Japanese speakers who are keen to visit schools on a one-shot basis to carry out Japanese language tasters. JTS is as big a time commitment as you want it to be. If you are have time to spare, are keen and enthusiastic, it is a great opportunity to get some teaching experience.

You can read more about the JTS Programme here.

JTS Volunteer Training Day

Our JTS Volunteer Training Days are a great opportunity to meet other volunteers, get teaching ideas, and ask any questions you may have. Those who are not yet members of JTS but are interested in joining are also welcome to sign up for the training day. You can read about our last Training Day, held in November 2016, here.

You can download a timetable, including details about guest speakers, below.


Date: 12 September 2017 from 2.30pm to 4.40pm

Brockway Room, Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, London.  WC1R 4RL (nearest station: Holborn)

Download JTS2017-Timetable
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WHAT ARE WE TRYING TO CONNECT? Japanese Identity and Desire to Pass on the Language and Culture among Japanese Diaspora   org




Living in the age of global mobility, the concept of being Japanese cannot be stable and remain unchanged. Identity is determined by choices and actions individuals take and current socio-political and economical flow. In search for what makes Japanese themselves feel Japanese, Kazuko Miyake has been interviewing ‘Japanese Diaspora’ who have spent most of their lives outside of Japan. Recently she conducted a survey among the members of Japan Association in the UK (JA) and obtained intriguing results. JA was formed in 1996, the core members of which came to the UK in the 1960-70s and have settled ever since. This talk is about how people living outside Japan hold the Japanese sense of identity.

In the first half of the talk, Miyake will explain briefly the background of the lives of Japanese in the UK after the Second World War, then move on to the present survey. The results of the survey reveal the complexity of determining factors, such as the age of immigration, nationality, families’ language use, retainment and inheritance of Japanese language and culture, position towards Japan, choice of place to spend last days, etc.

In the latter half of the talk, one of the founding members of JA, Momoko Williams, who now leads the Wasurena-gusa project, will speak about the project. The project's aim is to preserve a record of Japanese who have lived and made significant contributions to the Japanese community since the 1950s. Short video clips of interviews that are relevant to the maintenance and inheritance of Japanese language will be shown, followed by Williams’ explanation and Miyake’s comments. The audience will be given some time to discuss in groups and share their opinions with other participants.

参加費:無料  Free entry
言語 日本語 This lecture will be held entirely in Japanese.

参加費:無料  Free entry
言語 日本語 This lecture will be held entirely in Japanese.


Date: 16 September 2017 from 2.00pm to 5.00pm


SOAS, University of London. WC1H 0XG(Room B102)

Co-organised by The Japan Foundation London and SOAS.

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Japan Foundation at Japan Matsuri 2017   org

The Japan Foundation is once again delighted to be participating in Japan Matsuri, London’s very own and much loved festival of Japanese culture held at Trafalgar Square.

Come and visit our stand to get information about the Japan Foundation and Japanese language. This year, for the first time, we'll even be holding mini tasters in Japanese throughout the day, where you can learn some useful Japanese words and phrases for travelling to Japan!

For more information about Japan Matsuri, please see their official webiste.

Date: 24 September 2017 from 10.00am to 8.00pm

Trafalgar Square, London WC2N 5DN

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Ryoji Ikeda - Test Pattern Live   org

Japan’s leading electronic composer and visual artist Ryoji Ikeda will perform Test Pattern, an audiovisual work presenting intense flickering black and white imagery synchronised to a powerful soundtrack. Exploring the relationship between art and sound by orchestrating sound, images, materials, physical phenomena and mathematical notions, Ikeda’s latest material is the result of almost 20 years of research.

Performances times: Thursday, 28 September 2017: 7:30pm and 9:30pm.

The Japan Foundation is pleased to present this project in partnership with Thirty Three Thirty Three, The Barbican and Selfridges.

Date: 28 September 2017

The Selfridges Old Hotel at Selfridges Oxford Street, London

For more information, please click here.
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Japanese Language Proficiency Test (JLPT) December 2017   org

The next Japanese Language Proficiency Test (JLPT) will take place on Sunday December 3rd 2017. It will be held at SOAS University of London, the University of Edinburgh and Cardiff University.

Deadline to apply: Thursday, 5th October for all 3 test sites. Sites will close earlier when the number of applicants reach the maximum. We highly recommend you to submit the application as early as possible to secure your place at your preferred site.

Please make sure you apply directly at the university where you wish to take the test.

1. SOAS University of London   Registration start: Late August
If you require special arrangements, please contact the university before applying by mid September

> CLICK HERE for more information and to apply at SOAS. 


2. University of Edinburgh    Registration start: 21 August 2017, 10am
If you require special arrangements, please contact the university before applying by 8th September, 4pm

> CLICK HERE for more information and to apply at the University of Edinburgh

3. Cardiff University    Registration start: 21st August 2017

Applicants requiring special arrangements should contact the university by email stating 'special arrangements' in the subject line before making an application by 8th September.

> CLICK HERE for more information and to apply at Cardiff University

For more information about the JLPT please click here to visit the official JLPT website.

Date: 3 December 2017
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Jiro Takamatsu: The Temperature of Sculpture   JPsupported

The Japan Foundation is delighted to support the first institutional solo exhibition of Jiro Takamatsu to take place outside of Japan, presented by the Henry Moore Institute. Comprising over seventy sculptures, drawings and documents loaned from collection in Japan, USA and Europe, the exhibition celebrates the work of this leading figure of post-war art, tracing Takamatsu's artistic practice through his exhibition history.

Date: 13 July 2017 - 22 October 2017

The Henry Moore Institute
74 The Headrow, Leeds LS1 3AH

For more information, please click here.

Jiro Takamatsu, documentary photography of 'Temporary Enclosure of Carioca Building Construction Site' (1971). Unidentified photographer. © The Estate of Jiro Takamatsu. Courtesy Yumiko Chiba Associates / Stephen Friedman Gallery / Fergus McCaffrey

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International Workshop on Reflective Transitions of Politics in Japanese Art   JPsupported

This workshop will kick-off a research-based investigation into how contemporary Japanese arts have been shaped by political forces, from wartime militarism to the ‘neoliberal world order’. In so doing, it will look to identify the processes of atomization of society through art forms. The focus of the workshop is on empirical examples of internalized art productions and art currents, in juxtaposition to art expressing national/regional politics – focusing on the presence of political notions in Japanese fine arts, popular cultures such as manga and anime, and visual arts, and on the reflections/intersections between Western arts and representations of Japanese politics. The aim is to provide insights into the changing boundaries and concepts of Japanese/Far Eastern Art History in the 19th-21st centuries, as seen by contemporary scholars of both the West and East.

Keynote speaker: Professor Atsushi Miura (The Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, University of Tokyo)

Date: 24 August 2017 from 9.30am to 5.00pm

Julian Study Centre 3.02, University of East Anglia, UK

Booking Information

Admission is open to all and free but registration is required. For more information please see the UEA website 

This conference is supported by the Japan Foundation Grant Programme for Japanese Studies Projects. For more information about this programme please click here.

Image: courtesy of University of Tokyo

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Call for Papers: Ecologies of Knowledge and Practice - Japanese Studies and the Environmental Humanities   JPsupported

How does research on Japan inform ecological practice that is pertinent beyond the framework of area studies, and vice versa? If we were to place nature at the core of our studies of human activities, what new kinds of interdisciplinarity and knowledge would be possible, and how would we reorganize our academic disciplines?

This workshop invites individual papers from UK-based Postgraduates and Early Career Researchers within the Humanities for an inter-disciplinary discussion with guidance from established scholars and practitioners.

Deadline for Abstracts: 31 August 2017

Date: 27 October 2017 - 28 October 2017

St Antony's College, University of Oxford

Booking Information

For more information on how to register and submit an abstract please see the workshop website 

This workshop is supported by the Japan Foundation London Grant Programme for Japanese Studies and Intellectual Exchange. For more information about this programme please click here.

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BAJS Workshop: Meiji Japan in Global History   JPsupported

The 2017 BAJS Workshop ‘Meiji Japan in Global History’ will feature intensive critical discussion of six pre-circulated essays on Meiji Japan during which the authors and audience members will explore in greater depth topics presented by the collected essays.

The workshop will begin with the idea that Meiji signifies a moment of global connectivity and asks how this twenty-first century starting point stimulates new questions and offers ways to re-conceptualize Japanese engagement with the late nineteenth century/early twentieth century world. Moreover, it asks what obstacles remain—including the nation-state itself and the imperialism in which its formation was embedded—and how they might help us distinguish our views from those our sources provide.

Contributors include scholars from Europe, the United States, and East Asia who are engaged in thinking about Meiji in global perspective.

The workshop is open to the UK and EU scholarly communities, and focuses on developing each article for publication. Articles will be completed in advance of the workshop and distributed to all participants, and registered members of the gallery audience, in order to best facilitate critical, constructive discussions.

Date: 8 September 2017 from 10.00am to 5.00pm

Room 116, First Floor, Main Building, SOAS, University of London, London

Booking Information

Only invited papers will be presented and discussed, but the workshop is open to any interested member of the scholarly community interested in attending the workshop.  For more information and to register please see the SOAS website

The Japan Foundation supports the British Association for Japanese Studies through our Support Programme for Organisations in Japanese Studies. For more information about our grant programmes for Japanese Studies and Intellectual Exchange please click here.

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British Museum presents: Hokusai  

British Museum presents: Hokusai is a groundbreaking documentary offering an exclusive private view of the British Museum major exhibition Hokusai: beyond the Great Wave. Filmed in Japan, the US and the UK, the film focuses on Hokusai’s work, life and times in the great bustling metropolis of Edo, modern Tokyo. Using Ultra HD video technology and stunning close-ups, the film will reveal the extraordinary detail in the work of Hokusai on the big screen – a real feast for the eyes!

From Sunday, 4 June 2017, the film will be screened at a vast number of cinemas across the United Kingdom. To find your nearest venue, please visit:

Date: 4 June 2017


Image: Clear day with a southern breeze ('Red Fuji') from Thirty-Six Views of Mt Fuji. Colour woodblock, 1831. © British Museum.

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