Sweden - Japan 150 years
On 12th November we will host a special event at the Centre, featuring special guest talks on the historical, cultural, and economic exchanges between Sweden and Japan. We will also have a performance of the traditional Japanese shakuhachi, a bamboo flute, as well as some Japanese (and Swedish!) refreshments.
Gunnar Jinmei Linder (shakuhachi player), Department of Asian, Middle Eastern and Turkish Studies. Stockholm University
Marie Söderberg, European Institute of Japanese Studies, Stockholm School of Economics
Ingemar Ottosson, Centre for Languages and Literature, Lund University
Shunji Ishihara, Graduate School of Economics, Tokyo University
Shakuhachi is a traditional Japanese flute. Its origins can be traced back to the 7th Century, coming from China via the Korean peninsula. Like many elements borrowed from Chinese culture, it was thoroughly ‘Japanified’ in the subsequent centuries, and has a long and interesting social and musical history in Japan, from its adoption by Zen Buddhist monks to its revival and spread to the West. Today it can even be heard in movie scores, such as Jurassic Park and Braveheart (don’t hold Braveheart against it!). Gunnar Jinmei Linder is an expert on both the history and musicology of the shakuhachi, not to mention a skilled player and teacher. He will provide some background on the instrument, before giving us a performance of both old and new pieces.
Our other speakers are all experts on different areas of Swedish-Japan relations. Marie Söderberg is Sweden’s foremost expert on all things Sweden-Japan, heading up the European Institute for Japanese Studies which has offices in Stockholm and Tokyo. Ingemar Ottosson is an expert on modern Japanese history, including media and education, and has published several books on Japan in Swedish. Shunji Ishihara is a professor at Tokyo University and published on the Swedish welfare state as well as comparative work on Japanese and Swedish political economy.