Contact Us Sitemap Privacy Policy Communication Policy Social Media Policy

What's On


Creativity and Designing JRPG (Japanese Role-Playing Games) new
The Art of the Pinch: A Lecture and Demonstration on Tsumami Zaiku new
A Story in Four Frames - Japanese Yonkoma Manga new
“Course on the Application of ICT for Teachers - Learning ICT Literacy Through Practice” new
Postgraduate Workshop 2021 new
Game + Culture: Co-evolution of Japanese Video Games and Society new
Japan Society Sixth Form Japan Week 2020 - Japan Foundation Online Japanese Language Workshop for Students new
The 16th Japanese Speech Contest for University Students new

Creativity and Designing JRPG (Japanese Role-Playing Games)   org

 

RPG, or the Role-Playing Game, is a widely known computer game genre. Though it did not originate in Japan, for decades the passion for RPGs has been strong among its nationals. Japanese computer game creators have developed an abundance of unique RPG content which subsequently and uniquely have evolved into JRPG (Japanese Role-Playing Game). Among these are the ever-popular Dragon Quest and Final Fantasy titles which secured their stable fanbase with the concepts of ongoing character growth and the evolution of storylines through battles. Games like these have managed to push Japan’s computer RPG industry to global success and continue attracting avid players. Interconnected with other media products such as anime and manga, JRPGs are also a source of drive in Japan’s commercial market. However, as the technology and user demands have shifted, Japanese creators may find themselves at crossroads and be compelled to revise the definition and existence of JRPGs in the 21st century where change is constant.

In this very special talk, the Japan Foundation has invited TOKITA Takashi, computer game creator and producer from Square Enix to talk about the position of Japanese RPGs. Based on his own experience of being involved in the creation of many JRPGs, including Final Fantasy IV and Chrono Trigger, he will explain the philosophies that he believes are fundamental in creating an interactive game world where users feel themselves becoming the main character as they play, while revealing the creative processes of Japanese RPGs and how the games can stand the test of time.

A brief conversation with Professor of Digital Media at Bath Spa University, James Newman, will follow TOKITA’s lecture.

 

About the speakers

TOKITA Takashi is a producer in the computer game industry. Since joining Square Enix (Square) in 1986, after working on Final Fantasy, Final Fantasy Legend etc. as a graphic designer, he developed Final Fantasy IV as a game designer. TOKITA has worked as a director on various titles including Chrono Trigger and Parasite Eve.

James Newman is Professor of Digital Media at Bath Spa University, UK. He has written widely on videogames, gaming histories, preservation and the cultures of play and has published a number of books including Videogames; Playing with Videogames; and Best Before. He is currently writing books on spectating videogames and on the early histories of game sound and music. James is a member of the research and curatorial team at the UK's National Videogame Museum and a co-founder of the Videogame Heritage Society Specialist Subject Network.

 

Special thanks to Square Enix and Kayoko Tezuka, Tuning for the Future (TFF) in Japan.

http://www.npo-tff.org

 

Image credit: ©1991, 2017 SQUARE ENIX CO., LTD. All Rights Reserved.
LOGO & IMAGE ILLUSTRATION: © 1991, 2007 YOSHITAKA AMANO

 

Please note that this session will be hosted on Zoom.

To book your place, please click here.


Date: 18 November 2020 from 12.00pm

For more information, please click here.

Celebrating:

Back to Top

The Art of the Pinch: A Lecture and Demonstration on Tsumami Zaiku   org

 

Tsumami zaiku is a traditional Japanese craft that enjoys a long history of some 200 years. By folding and pinching colourful pieces of cloth, the technique enables you to create day-to-day accessories, including ornamental combs and hairpins (kanzashi), with elaborate and intricate designs such as delicate flowers and birds. It is believed that the wife of a daimyo (lord) and her lady-in-waiting started tsumami zaiku as a hobby. Over the years, however, the craft has been adopted into the lives of society at large with many women matching a variety of these handmade accessories to their ceremonial kimono worn at annual festivals or on special occasions. Furthermore, in recently years, tsumami zaiku has become stylish in popular culture, appealing to followers of contemporary fashion in and outside Japan.

With this in mind, we have invited YAMASHITA Tomomi, an official instructor of the technique, to lead a lecture on brief history of the artistry, describing how this handmade technique can be applied to and is enjoyed in modern times. She will then demonstrate the tsumami-making method, introducing the range of tools, techniques, fabrics, and explain the basics of fixing and assembling the piece so that you can create your very own design at home.

Joining YAMASHITA is Cora Fung, a practitioner of tsumami zaiku based in the UK who has been fascinated by the craft. She will define her own attraction to the craft, displaying examples of her own work as a way to show you how inclusive this hobby is of creators outside of Japan.

If you wish to craft alongside with us in real-time, we suggest you prepare for the session with the necessary materials listed below.

Join us and bring your own tsumami zaiku idea to life, be it an ornamental hairpin or an early Christmas decoration! All ages and skill levels welcome.

 

Materials for a simple one petal demonstration:

  • Woodworking glue
  • 2-3 pieces of square cloth (about 4 cm). Fabric with bonds such as thin cotton is best.
  • If you have some, tapered long tweezers. If not, there may be alternative instructions on folding by hand.
  • Something flat to lay underneath the materials (for those who want to use starch glue). You can find out how to make starch glue by clicking here.

 

About the speakers

YAMASHITA Tomomi is a Certified Instructor of the Tsumami Zaiku Association. She has hosted workshops for some 500 visitors from over 30 countries around the world. In 2019, she has also launched the ‘Tsumami kanzashi’ website to pass on the traditions of and information on tsumami zaiku. So far, the website has been visited by people from over 50 countries and can be found here: tsumami-kanzashi.com/

Cora Fung is a self-taught tsumami zaiku artist based in Sheffield. She has been practising the craft for three and a half years and has created a wide range of accessories and artwork. Apart from traditional subjects such as chrysanthemum and crane, she also creates modern patterns and objects such as angel wings, ocean waves, and umbrellas. She trades under the trade name Takara Crafts and her crafts have been showcased in various craft fairs and exhibitions in the Yorkshire area and Manchester.

 

This talk has been made possible with the kind assistance of Kayoko Tezuka, Tuning for the Future (TFF) in Japan.

http://www.npo-tff.org

 

Please note that this session will be hosted on Zoom.

To book your place, please click here.


Date: 28 November 2020 from 11.00am

For more information, please click here.

Celebrating:

Back to Top

A Story in Four Frames - Japanese Yonkoma Manga   org

 

Yonkoma manga is one of a range of manga formats produced in Japan. As the direct translation of the name suggests, it comprises of just 4 frames in which a story starts, develops and ends. Although it may be relatively unknown overseas, this manga style has a long-standing history. Primarily associated with daily printed newspapers for many years, the characters featured in specific yonkoma often could become household names while the storylines tend to develop while reflecting social and political trends. In recent years, there has been a rise in more variation of content but the simplicity and conciseness in telling a story, reminiscent of Japanese haiku, remains the same.

Following the yonkoma manga workshop we held in May 2020, the Japan Foundation has invited SAIKA Tadahiro of Kyoto Seika University to explain the characteristics of yonkoma manga and trace its history to date. SAIKA will also examine the way this classic format, which is embedded in Japanese culture, has evolved over time and in the context of changes in Japanese society, while introducing some of the new wave seen in the world of contemporary yonkoma manga.

A brief conversation with London-based writer, curator, critic and lecturer specialising in international comics, Paul Gravett, will follow SAIKA’s lecture.

 

About the speakers

SAIKA Tadahiro was born in Wakayama, Japan in 1980. He completed his PhD at the Graduate School of Cultural Studies, Kobe University. SAIKA is currently a research fellow at the International Manga Research Center, Kyoto Seika University. His research interests include the social context in which manga is produced and the way in which the gaze towards manga artists has shifted with time. In addition to carrying out his research, he translates and writes articles on manga and also teaches at various universities in Japan.

Paul Gravett, co-founder of Escape magazine and Comica Festival, is a London-based writer, curator, critic and lecturer specialising in international comics. His books include Manga: Sixty Years of Japanese Comics (2004), Great British Comics (2006), Incredibly Strange Comics (2008), Comics Art (2013), Mangasia: The Definitive Guide to Asian Comics (2017) and Posy Simmonds (2019). He also edited 1001 Comics You Must Read Before You Die (2011). He has curated retrospectives of several prominent creators and co-curated Comics Unmasked: Art and Anarchy in the UK for The British Library. In 2017, he curated Mangasia: Wonderlands of Asian Comics, which The Barbican Centre is touring worldwide.

 

Please note that this session will be hosted on Zoom.

To book your place, please click here.


Date: 26 November 2020 from 12.00pm

For more information, please click here.

Celebrating:

Back to Top

“Course on the Application of ICT for Teachers - Learning ICT Literacy Through Practice”   org

Instructor: Dr. Tomohisa Yamada, Hokkaido University Associate Professor

Guidelines for Applicants

At the Japan Foundation, London, we create and offer quality professional development programmes for educators in Japanese language education.

This newly developed online course aims to help teachers to update and increase their ICT literacy skills. Participants will be invited to be a member of our safe and friendly online learning community to work on carefully selected tasks at their own pace. There will also be a plenty of opportunities to ask questions and to receive guidance and feedback.

Type: Online (using Zoom and Slack software)

Event period: End of November 2020 to March 2021

Applicant Criteria: Teachers of Japanese who are currently employed by an educational institution in the United Kingdom or Europe. (We will prioritise applications from teachers working in secondary education in the United Kingdom)

Participation Requirements: Participants must have no issues with online learning and be able to participate actively in topic discussions, as well as granting permission for the Japan Foundation, London to use images, recordings, surveys, interviews etc for activity reports, evaluations, and future publicity.

Course Language: The course will mainly be conducted in Japanese, but there will be English language support when necessary.

Number of Participants: 15

How to Apply: Please fill out the online form below.

https://www.smartsurvey.co.uk/s/P0Z0E5/

Application Deadline: 16th November (Monday) 9:00AM (GMT)

Note: This course is designed to take place with a small number of participants. The Japan Foundation, London will evaluate applications to decide on who will participate. Please understand that we cannot answer questions regarding success or failure of application.

Please click here to download the Guidelines for Applicants

Schedule (planned):

-      16th November 2020 (Monday) – Application deadline

-      20th November 2020 (Friday) – Notification of application results

-      28th November 2020 (Saturday) – Course orientation

-      December 2020 – Distribution of Lecture Video 1

-      January 2021 – Distribution of Lecture Video 2

-      February 2021 – Distribution of Lecture Video 3

-      March 2021 – Reflection and evaluations

 

Instructor: Dr. Tomohisa Yamada

Associate Professor at Hokkaido University (Institute for the Advancement of Higher Education/ Graduate School of International Media-Communication and Tourism Studies)

Dr Yamada has an MA from the Institute of Education, University of London, and Ph.D. in Education  from Hokkaido University. After working with the University of London School of Oriental and African Studies Language Centre and Saga University Exchange Student Centre, he assumed his present post in 2012. His area of research is educational technology and teacher education. As well as his research activities, he is actively involved in giving lectures and professional development programmes aimed at increasing ICT literacy for teachers of Japanese. He was awarded the Hokkaido University Excellent Teachers award (2014 to 2019). Among his key publications are “Practical Use of ICT (Second Edition)” and “Active Learning for Teachers of Japanese” (Kuroshio Shuppan).

Message from the Instructor:

In 2020, due to Covid-19, our lives and our classroom classes have become limited, and we have been forced to move online. Teachers are now urgently required to be able to use ICT. Not only focusing on improving the efficiency of administration and teaching results, but also looking ahead to the future of education, this online course will be formed of the following three perspectives:

  1. Making and Organising: A lesson on the efficacy of the creation of teaching materials, managing student grades and data management.
  2. Presentation: A lesson on what ICT literacy is necessary to present teaching materials to learners.
  3. Linking: A lesson on how to create a space outside of the classroom for teachers and learners to make connections, and how to use that space effectively.

We aim to have participants in this course learn these points together, and for the participants a learning community which promote/value collaborative collegiality. I hope that through this network, the amount of colleagues to whom you can express your “how do I do this?” will increase, and this network that will begin in the United Kingdom will spread to Europe.

 

Course Coordinator: Yuko Fujimitsu (The Japan Foundation, London – Japanese Language Chief Advisor)


Date: 16 November 2020
Venue:

Online.

Back to Top

Postgraduate Workshop 2021   org

The Japan Foundation/BAJS Postgraduate Workshop is back! A lot has changed since the 2020 iteration, and this year’s online workshop will be tackling the effects of the global pandemic on academia head on. The workshop will take place online and will be spread over two mornings. The aim of this workshop will be to help postgraduate students develop their careers in JS navigating the 'new normal'.

 This year, participating students will also be able to present their latest research to academics and their peers, gaining important feedback at a time when presenting opportunities is low.

There will also be talks and discussions about key areas surrounding the rapidly changing world of Japanese Studies. Topics will include:

  • Funding opportunities available to PhD candidates and early career researchers.
  • The current state of academia in Japan and the effects of COVID-19
  • Job opportunities both inside and outside of academia 
  • Creating a social media research presence
  • And more…

Eligibility

Registration is open to postgraduate in any field of the humanities of social sciences with a focus on Japan (including comparative studies). Spaces are limited and priority will be given to PhD/Dphil students from the UK/Ireland. Master’s level students may apply at any time but their places will not be confirmed until closer to the event. Students must be able to attend both days.

Registration is free for all participants. To register, please fill in this form.


Date: 25 February 2021 - 26 February 2021
Venue:

Online

Back to Top

Game + Culture: Co-evolution of Japanese Video Games and Society   org

 

From the likes of the Super Mario series to the more recent Animal Crossing and e-sports, Japanese video games have been widely acknowledged as some of the best in business, attracting evangelical fans all over the world. Though ostensibly created with borderless content and universal characters, it is argued by some that Japanese video games are deeply embedded in and reflective of Japanese society. Their palpable spirit and philosophies may be understood as being sourced from Japan’s old traditions, even from well-known art forms such as haiku and the practice of tea ceremony. However, it is difficult to perceive at a glance how these seemingly unrelated pretechnological art forms and culture have influenced 21st century digital content.

Inviting HIRABAYASHI Hisakazu, a video game journalist and analyst, this special talk aims to identify ‘Japaneseness’ in digital game content, analysing to what degree it has rooted from Japanese cultural as well as social history and to what extent it is indebted to old Japanese traditions. While illustrating some characteristics of leading game companies such as Nintendo, HIRABAYASHI also explains the future visions of these companies and game creators against a background of the recent evidence of a decline in the global share of Japanese games. 

A brief conversation with Culture Director of the BGI, Iain Simons, will follow HIRABAYASHI’s lecture.

 

About the speakers

HIRABAYASHI Hisakazu (Interact Co., Ltd. CEO / Game analyst) In 1985, after graduating from Aoyama Gakuin University, he joined the publishing company Takarajima where he worked as editor of a game specialty magazine. In 1991, he established Interact Co., Ltd., a consulting company specializing in the game industry, and started supporting companies entering the game industry. He currently works as a consultant of the game industry, a journalist, and a commentator on television and radio programs. HIRABAYASHI’s works include the book Gemū no daigaku (The University of Gaming) and Gemū no jiji mondai (Current Issues in Gaming). He is an editorial board member of Digital content white paper of Japan, as well as a board member of the Japan Game Culture Foundation.

Iain Simons makes, writes and talks about videogames and culture across many popular and specialist media. He has written numerous books and papers and regularly contributes to conferences and events around the world. In 2005 he curated the first videogame festival at London’s SouthBank Centre, after which he founded GameCity in 2006. In 2008, this project led to co-founding the first National Videogame Archive, with the National Media Museum. In 2015 he co-founded the National Videogame Arcade, the acclaimed cultural centre for games, which following a merger with the BGI relaunched as the National Videogame Museum. He has worked as a creative consultant with many organisations including the BBC, ArtsDepot, British Film Institute, Barbican Centre, NHS and sits on the heritage advisory board of BAFTA.

Image credit: Partial photo of retro Nintendo games by Nick Hamze on Unsplash

Please note that this session will be hosted on Zoom.

To book your place, please click here.


Date: 12 November 2020 from 12.00pm

For more information, please click here.
Back to Top

Japan Society Sixth Form Japan Week 2020 - Japan Foundation Online Japanese Language Workshop for Students  

We are honoured this year to be participating once again in Japan Society’s Sixth Form Japan event. This is a yearly event for sixth form students who attend to learn all about Japan and its language and culture.

Please note that this event will take place online and that it is open to Sixth Form students.

If you have any questions, please contact The Japan Society directly. You can find out how using this link.

The Japan Foundation, London will be running a language session on Japanese onomatopoeia.

---

Dokidoki! Express yourself using Japanese sounds.

Date: Tuesday 1st December 2020

Just as in English, the Japanese language has many onomatopoeia, and thousands more to choose from! Japanese speakers use them regularly in their daily conversation to express and also bring to life, not only the sounds, but also emotions and actions of any given scene or situation. In this interactive workshop, led by the Japan Foundation, London, you will be introduced to the rich variety of Japanese onomatopoeia and the Japanese visual language, manpu, frequently used in Manga to convey emotions through signs and symbols alone.


Date: 1 December 2020
Venue:

Online


For more information, please click here.
Back to Top

The 16th Japanese Speech Contest for University Students  

 

We are delighted to announce that the 16th Japanese Speech Contest for University Students is open for applications!
This contest gives students the chance to make their voices heard in Japanese, and win some fantastic prizes! Finals Day will be held online, on Saturday 6th March 2021.
:: Contest Aims
The main purpose of the event is to improve the speaking and presentation skills of students studying Japanese as a foreign language. Through this event, we hope to promote Japanese language learning at higher education level in the UK and Ireland.
:: Who can apply?
The contest is aimed at undergraduate students who are currently studying Japanese as a foreign language at a university in the UK or Ireland.
 
There are three different categories:
1. Speech Category:  For those studying a Japanese course aiming for the equivalent of JF standard C1 or C2 at a university the UK or Ireland including as an elective, optional or other university-based language course. Five finalists will be selected.
Application Deadline: 9th November 2020 (15:00)
 
2. Individual Presentation Category: For those studying a Japanese course aiming for the equivalent of JF standard B1 or B2. Participants will give a PowerPoint presentation using Japanese. The aim of the presentation is to introduce a particular theme to the audience, for example a region, event, custom, etc. from the UK or another country outside Japan. Five finalists will be selected.
Application Deadline: 7th December 2020 (15:00)
 
3. Group Presentation Category: For those studying a Japanese course aiming for the equivalent of JF standard A1 or A2. Participants will take part in groups of two to four students and give a PowerPoint presentation using Japanese. The aim of the presentation is to introduce a particular theme to the audience, for example a region, event, custom, etc. from the UK or another country outside Japan. Five groups which are selected to present during the finals day will be given a special award.
Application Deadline: 14th December 2020
*Details of JF Standard can be found here:
http://jfstandard.jp/pdf/jfs2015_pamphlet_eng.pd
 
Videos from the 15th Contest Finals Day can be viewed here - Coming soon!
Please see the files below for contest poster, FAQ and application forms for each category.
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Contest Poster
- Speech Category Application Form
- Speech Category Rules and Guidance
- Individual Presentation Category Application Form
- Group Presentation Category Application Form

We are delighted to announce that the 16th Japanese Speech Contest for University Students is open for applications!


This contest gives students the chance to make their voices heard in Japanese, and win some fantastic prizes! Finals Day will be held online, on Saturday 6th March 2021.


:: Contest Aims

The main purpose of the event is to improve the speaking and presentation skills of students studying Japanese as a foreign language. Through this event, we hope to promote Japanese language learning at higher education level in the UK and Ireland.


:: Who can apply?

The contest is aimed at undergraduate students who are currently studying Japanese as a foreign language at a university in the UK or Ireland.
 
There are three different categories:


1. Speech Category:  For those studying a Japanese course aiming for the equivalent of JF standard C1 or C2 at a university the UK or Ireland including as an elective, optional or other university-based language course. Five finalists will be selected.


Application Deadline: 9th November 2020 (15:00)
 
2. Individual Presentation Category: For those studying a Japanese course aiming for the equivalent of JF standard B1 or B2. Participants will give a PowerPoint presentation using Japanese. The aim of the presentation is to introduce a particular theme to the audience, for example a region, event, custom, etc. from the UK or another country outside Japan. Five finalists will be selected.


Application Deadline: 7th December 2020 (15:00) 

 
3. Group Presentation Category: For those studying a Japanese course aiming for the equivalent of JF standard A1 or A2. Participants will take part in groups of two to four students and give a PowerPoint presentation using Japanese. The aim of the presentation is to introduce a particular theme to the audience, for example a region, event, custom, etc. from the UK or another country outside Japan. Five groups which are selected to present during the finals day will be given a special award.


Application Deadline: 14th December 2020 (15:00)

 
*Details of JF Standard can be found here:
https://jfstandard.jp/pdf/jfs2015_pamphlet_eng.pdf
 
Videos from the 15th Contest Finals Day can be viewed here


Please see the files below for contest poster, FAQ and application forms for each category.
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Contest Poster
- Speech Category Application Form
- Speech Category Rules and Guidance
- Individual Presentation Category Application Form
- Group Presentation Category Application Form


Date: 17 September 2020 - 14 December 2020
Back to Top
Text Size: | A | A | A | A

Sign up here for our monthly e-bulletin.