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Subjectivity of the Ainu People Described in the Book ‘Nibutani’, Edited by Kaizawa Tadashi: A New Discovery and Approach to Ainu Research
Rikkyo University, Graduate School of Sociology.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Arts, Centre for Gender Research. (Technoscience)ORCID iD: 0000-0003-2820-0584
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Arts, Department of History, The Hugo Valentin Centre.
2014 (English)In: Re: Mindings: Co-Constituting Indigenous, Academic, Artistic Knowledges, Uppsala: The Hugo Valentin Centre, Uppsala University , 2014, p. 17-25Chapter in book (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Ainu studies still lack an inside perspective from the Ainu themselves though the importance of such perspective has been recognized for a deeper understanding of the Ainu by a few Ainu and Wajin [ethnic Japanese] postmodern scholar. To begin with, Ainu “self telling history” have been considered by researchers of Ainu studies to be “non-existent.” In other words, it can be said that the very act of dealing with modern history in relation to the Ainu by those materials was under a taboo for both the Ainu and the Wajin.

This article demonstrates that a history book of the Nibutani Community entitled “Nibutani” edited by Kaizawa Tadashi in cooperation with local residents is a rare ex- ample of modern Ainu history compiled by the Ainu themselves. The book covers all the details of each family with family trees though the Ainu hardly confessed them- selves as Ainu under severe discrimination at the time. Further most of its lifestories were collected through the interviewing of those families by Kaizawa himself. As far as the contents are concerned, some stories are related to the Ainu, whereas others are seemingly related to their personal life. Thus the book presented a variety of stories that represent the then lives of the local residents in the Nibutani Community.

At the moment when ‘Nibutani’ was published the Ainu did not voluntari- ly talk about their own history, and neither were expected to do so. ‘Nibutani’, which was completed by Kaizawa, connected the individually divided histories to each other, and made clear the relationships between the individuals and the community. As a result, the local residents in the Nibutani Community have ap- preciated this book for highlighting their own perspectives on their local history.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: The Hugo Valentin Centre, Uppsala University , 2014. p. 17-25
Series
Uppsala multiethnic papers, ISSN 0281-448X ; 55
Keywords [en]
Ainu, Indigenous peoples, Life History, Nibutani, Hydropower, Japan
National Category
Humanities and the Arts
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-383411ISBN: 978-91-86531-10-2 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-383411DiVA, id: diva2:1315680
Available from: 2019-05-14 Created: 2019-05-14 Last updated: 2019-09-12Bibliographically approved

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Öhman, May-BrittMaruyama, Hiroshi

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