Collaborative Research (Joint Usage/Research Center Program)

Type A1 (Calling-for-Subject Type) Research Projects
Project Coordinator(s)
Formation of Japanese acupuncture-moxibustion : Reconstruction of the medical history in medieval and early modern Japan NAGANO, Hitoshi (2018.4-2021.3)
An Interdisciplinary Study on East Asian Works of Arts and Culture Concerning the Visible and/or Invisible Entities SOTOMURA, Ataru (2019.4 - 2022.3)
Research in a ‘Totally Systematized World’: Media-Art, Humanities, and Natural Science MIWA, Masahiro (2019.4 - 2022.3)
(Dis)Continuity of Jingxue from the Qing Period through to the Modern Age: From the Perspective of Muluxue TAKEMOTO, Norihito (2020.4 - 20232.3)
SHIGETA, Michi(2020.4 - 20232.3)
Ecologies of Experimentality: A Comparative Approach to Multispecies Coexistence in teh Anthropocene MOHACSI, Gergely(2020.4 - 20232.3)


Type A2 Research Projects
Project Coordinator(s)
A Study of Horse Culture in East Asia ISAHAYA, Naoto(2020.4-2021.3)
A study of post-war cultural space with special reference to SEIBU KODO Park, Sara(2020.4-2021.3)
Studies of the critical reception of Yasujiro Ozu'z films in teh Occident MASAKIYO, Kensuke(2020.4-2021.3)
The Representation of the Amitgabha Tathagata in East Asia TAKAHASHI, Sakiko(2020.4-2021.3)
A Comparative Study of the Socio-Economic History of India and China throughout the Long Nineteenth Century - with Special Reference to Tax Systems OGAWA, Michihiro(2020.4-2021.3)


Type B Research Projects
Project Coordinator(s)
Aspects of Historical Development and Transmission of the Tibetan Civilization IKEDA, Takumi (2018.4-2021.3)
Modern Kyoto and Culture TAKAGI, Hiroshi (2019.4-2022.3)
Studies on teh Social History of Environmental Problems IWAKI, Takuji(2020.4-2023.3)
Institutions and models of modern China MURAKAMI, Ei(2020.4-2023.3)
A Comparative Study of Classification and Racialization TAKEZAWA, Yasuko(2020.4-2023.3)


Type C Research Projects
Project Coordinator(s)
Fundamental Research of the Kanseki Repository WITTERN, Christian (2016.4-2021.3)
Study on the Excavated Manuscripts of the Qin Dynasty MIYAKE, Kiyoshi (2016.4-2021.3)
A Bibliographic Research on Old Chinese Books Previously Housed in the Kyoto Institute of the Academy of Oriental Culture YAGI, Takeshi (2016.4-2021.3)
Buddhist Sculptures and Their Inscriptions in the Longmen Caves of the Northern Dynasties INAMOTO, Yasuo (2017.4-2020.3)
Humanities in the 21st Century: An Attempt at Understanding Our Age OKADA, Akeo
KOSEKI, Takashi
SATŌ, Junji (2018.4-2021.3)
Warfare and Diplomacy in Pre-modern Eastern Eurasia IWAI, Shigeki
FURUMATSU, Takashi (2018.4-2021.3)
A Study about the Formation of Business Circles in Imperial Japan: 1895-1945 KAGOTANI, Naoto (2018.4-2021.3)
A Study of East Asia in the Third Century MORISHITA, Shōji
(sub:MUKAI, Yusuke) (2018.4-2021.3)
Reviving the History of 20th Century China by Reviewing Source Materials ISHIKAWA, Yoshihiro (2019.4-2022.3)
Studies on the cultures and societies of pre-modern Inner Asia and its adjacent areas INABA, Minoru (2019.4-2022.3)
Art and Society: The Various Aspects of Creative Activities in the Modern Age TAKASHINA, Erika(2020.4-2023.3)
Studies of the Buddhist Cave-temples in the Northern Dynasties (II) OKAMURA, Hidenori(2020.4-2023.3)
Study of Classical Chinese Corpora YASUOKA, Kōichi(2020.4-2023.3)
Chinese Laity's View of Buddhism: Reading the Expanded Collecxtion of the Propagation of Light compliled by Daoxuan in the Tang Funayama, Tōru(2020.4-2024.3)


Type A1


Formation of Japanese acupuncture-moxibustion : Reconstruction of the medical history in medieval and early modern Japan

Coordinator: NAGANO, Hitoshi (2018.4 - 2021.3)
Project Description
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An Interdisciplinary Study on East Asian Works of Arts and Culture Concerning the Visible and/or Invisible Entities

Coordinator: SOTOMURA, Ataru (2019.4 - 2022.3)
Project Description
We carry out international and interdisciplinary research beyond the framework of the conventional academic fields, as a preparation for establishing a common basis to the understanding of works of arts and culture of East Asia. Researchers from various fields come together to explore theories and works concerning the visible and/or invisible entities,which are supposed to be invisible to ordinary people. Since, we think, discussions on Buddhist and Daoist theories give a particularly effective guideline, we lay special emphasis on them. We not only confirm common and different points explained in a variety of theories and thoughts, no matter whether they may be indigenous or not, but also pay careful attention to contradictions, which may be recognized between theories and works. We select concrete examples (specific works of art etc) and position them in East Asian cultural history so as to show practical models of interpretation. The works, which we investigate, range from archaeological relics to sculptures, paintings, gardens, architecture, music, performing arts, etc..

Research in a ‘Totally Systematized World’: Media-Art, Humanities, and Natural Science

Coordinator: MIWA Masahiro (2019.4 - 2022.3)
Project Description
We are now living in a totally systemized, high-technology world which is completely dependent on electrical energy, and even things that we regard as ‘Nature’ or the ‘Environment’ or the ‘Human Spirit’ could not continue to exist without this system. In this project, characteristics of the contemporary world will be researched in terms of cybernetics, technology, media and information theory. The overall purpose of this research is to synthesize knowledge of both natural science as well as the humanities, and to create media-based art works inspired by this research.
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(Dis)Continuity of Jingxue from the Qing Period through to the Modern Age: From the Perspective of Muluxue

Coordinator: TAKEMOTO, Norihito (2020.4 - 2023.3)
Project Description
China has its own traditional scholarship, which has undergone a great deal of change throughout its long history. The purpose of this study is to clarify the (dis)continuity of Chinese scholarship from the Qing period to the modern era using the following perspectives. First, based on Zhang Xuecheng’s contribution to Muluxue, we look for those opportunities in the history of scholarship throughout the Qing period that have allowed for the transformation of Jingxue into various academic disciplines, including history. Zhang’s Muluxue traced the origins and development of scholarship, classified it, and tried to present it in a unified manner. The theory of "Liu Jing Jie Shi (the Six Classics are all history)" does not necessarily only apply to the transformation “from Jingxue to history". Second, we trace how the commonly held understanding of Qing scholarship, such as the interpretation of the theory of "Liu Jing Jie Shi ", was established by reviewing the discourse on the history of scholarship that has occurred since the late Qing period. Finally, we combine these two points of view to provide a bird's-eye view of the (dis)continuity of Jingxue from the Qing period through to the modern era.
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Coordinator: SHIGETA, Michi (2020.4 - 2023.3)
Project Description
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Ecologies of Experimentality: A Comparative Approach to Multispecies Coexistence in the Anthropocene

Coordinator: MOHACSI, Gergely (2020.4 - 2023.3)
Project Description
From randomized controlled clinical trials of pharmaceutical products to the field testing of genetically modified organisms or smart city experiments, in the past half century the site of scientific testing has expanded from the laboratory to society at large with all its political and ethical implications. These changes have been prompted by the increasing level of lay expertise and public participation in technological innovation, as well as by the rapid progress of data processing and computational infrastructures. We call the wide-ranging consequences of this transformation “experimentality.” How has this public participation in experimentation reshaped the relationship between humans and other living things? In what sense can techno-scientific innovation be thought of as the ontological ground for multispecies togetherness in the Anthropocene? To answer these and other intellectually pressing questions, this project will engage in a comparative discussion with specialists in the environmental humanities in and outside Japan by building on existing theoretical frameworks such as Umwelt (kansekai) and kyōsei (togetherness). The aim of the project is twofold. First, it explores the political, scientific and affective re-construction of ‘multispecies togetherness’ in the Anthropocene through specific case studies and comparative analysis. Second, it provides a methodological ground to engage with the lateral move in the humanities by creating an experimental space for the ethnographic study of multispecies coexistence.
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Type A2


A Study of Horse Culture in East Asia

Coordinator: ISAHAYA, Naoto (2020.4 - 2021.3)
Project Description
TIt has been shown that eastern Eurasia was not especially advanced in the use of domestic horses and chariots, and that even China was a secondary region compared to the direct and indirect influences derived from the West. From the latter half of the 1st millennium B.C. to the first half of the 1st millennium A.D., the way horses were used in war changed drastically as horse-riding replaced chariots and the customs associated with domestic horses and horseback riding rapidly spread to new areas. The appearance of horses on the Japanese Islands can be seen as the final phase of this change. In this way, it is possible to present a rough overview of horse culture in East Asia by collating research results for different regions and time periods. However, there are relatively few comprehensive studies focusing on the emergence, popularization and subsequent development of domestic horses, chariots and horse-riding in Eastern Eurasia, based on actual archaeological data. In view of these problems, this study compared horse culture and horse production in China, the Korean Peninsula and the Japanese Islands with that in the Eurasian Steppes, using archaeological materials and historical documents.
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A study of post-war cultural space with special reference to SEIBU KODO

Coordinator: PARK, Sara (2020.4 - 2021.3)
Project Description
Scholars in both the humanities and social sciences have highlighted the “shake-up” of values that has occurred in the post-Cold War world. Recession and poverty in “developed” countries generate populism on both the right and the left, and attacks on diversity are now part of the political/social mainstream. However, while suggesting that many “old values” sit uneasily in counterculture, scholars often lack empirical studies to support their claims. This project tries to cast light on “post-68” values and the practices that have reproduced them in Seibu Kodo, a milieu of autogestion, by examining the personal recollections of the people involved. A place like Seibu Kodo is a product of the “transformation of values indicated in May Events and its spread” (Takashi Miyajima, Atarashi shakai undo to posuto 68 nen no shakaigaku, p.178). This research project will examine the role and meaning of the autonomous place in local communities and personal histories, as well as the lessons that may apply to contemporary society, where certain values no longer seem to be upheld.
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Studies of the critical reception of Yasujiro Ozu's films in the Occident

Coordinator: MASAKIYO, Kensuke (2020.4 - 2019.3)
Project Description
The purpose of this study is to analyse film criticism in order to shed new light on the reception of Yasujiro Ozu’s films in the Occident, from 1957 when his crowning achievement Tokyo Story (1953) was shown in London for the first time through to 1988 when the American film historian David Bordwell wrote Ozu and the Poetics of Cinema (1988) - the definitive work on Ozu’s films in English. Although there are many studies of Ozu’s films, almost all of them, especially 1970s-’80s works, consist of analysis of both the narrative and the cinematic textuality of the films. In contrast, this study is a study examining how Ozu’s films were received historically overseas, especially in the Occident (the United States, England, and France). Such historical reception studies of Ozu’s films have not been carried out before because of Ozu’s lag in terms of overseas popularity. Also, since Western criticism of Ozu’s films has not been translated into Japanese, it is almost unknown in Japan. This study intends to analyze this previously untouched Western criticism for the first time, thereby highlighting the beginnings of international appreciation for Ozu’s cinematic art.
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The Representation of the Amitabha Tathagata in East Asia

Coordinator: TAKAHASHI, Sakiko (2020.4 - 2021.3)
Project Description
The Amitabha Tathagata, the ruler of the Western Pure Land, is one of the primary Buddhas of Mahayana Buddhism. The various artworks that have been created, such as the images of individual Amitabha or the Amitabha Triad, the representation of the Western Pure Land, and the image of the descent of Amitabha, all reflect various thoughts or expressions of faith in the Amitabha Tathagata. This research team seeks to investigate these various aspects of religious thought or faith by examining how the Amitabha Tathagata and the Western Pure Land have been represented in East Asia. For instance, we will hold two workshops and discuss the various iconographic and religious functions, based on the differing imagery and representations of the Amitabha Tathagata and the Western Pure Land in China and Japan. This research team, including art historians and archaeologists who specialize in Gandhara, the Western Regions, China, and Japan, will also help advance interdisciplinary studies. .
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A Comparative Study of the Socio-Economic History of India and China throughout the Long Nineteenth Century - with Special Reference to Tax Systems

Coordinator: OGAWA, Michihiro (2020.4 - 2021.3)
Project Description
This project aims to compare key points of Chinese and Indian socio-economic history throughout “the long nineteenth century”. Due to the recent growth of Asian economies, it has now become important to review global history from Asian perspectives – especially the way in which intra-Asian trade and other characteristics developed throughout the period of colonial rule by Europe during “the long nineteenth century”. Although much research has been carried out on the socio-economic history of China and India, which are both great Asian powers, the study of Asian history as a whole during “the long nineteenth century” has yet to be established in Japan because of the limited amount of academic communication between scholars and historians who study each of these countries. By comparing Chinese and Indian history during the nineteenth century, Japanese scholars in this project reconsider the diversity of Asian history within a purely Asian framework, independent from Western views of Asian History. This project compares Chinese and Indian history by focusing specifically on the tax systems which not only supported both states financially, but greatly affected socio-economic relations in both states.
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Type B


Aspects of Historical Development and Transmission of the Tibetan Civilization

Coordinator: IKEDA, Takumi (2018.4 - 2021.3)
Project Description
From the 7th century, the Tibetan civilization—its unique religions, rituals, languages, and social systems—gradually permeated the neighboring cultural areas via direct communications and trade. Our project compiles the results of interdisciplinary research carried out on the inter-cultural communication among these areas, reviewing and evaluating the aspects of the historical development and expansion of the Tibetan civilization in the Eurasian world. The Tibeto-Himalayan area, while influenced by preceding Asian civilizations, has developed an individual civilization. The Tibet civilization grew stronger after assimilating Buddhism in the 11-12th century, and by communicating with the neighboring cultural areas, it spread through Mongol to East Asia; Moreover, its influence proved effective even in the modern European world of the late 20th century. How did the Tibetan civilization maintain such power and flexibility? How did the Tibetan civilization come in conflict and how did it attain reconciliation with neighboring civilizations? And how have elements of the Tibetan civilization been transmitted in modern society, even after the country itself ceased to exist? To find answers to such questions, we shall analyze the historical aspects and transmission of the Tibetan civilization from various academic angles.
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Modern Kyoto and Culture

Coordinator: TAKAGI, Hiroshi (2019.4 - 2022.3)
Project Description
This research project will look at modern Kyoto and modern culture, examining them in relation to each other. Kyoto, nowadays visited by more than 55 million people every year, is the most popular tourist city in the world. The city has been often described with expressions reminiscent of an elegant, aristocratic culture, such as “Kyoto, where the Japanese culture was born,” “the culture of hospitality”, which have also become the promotional lines for the relocation of the Agency of Cultural Affairs to Kyoto. Such images of Kyoto were clearly constructed politically and socially during the modern period. With this in mind, we would like to reconsider several topics concerning the culture of modern Kyoto, including the issue of marginality, the life of the common people, sexuality in the red-light districts and the problem of discrimination, etc. We will also investigate the political significance of culture and its relations to local communities. The project members, specialists in various fields such as history, politics, education, social movements, economy, society, religion, knowledge, arts, cinema, literature, architecture, and garden design, among others, will step outside their areas of expertise to rethink the culture of modern Kyoto in a broader framework. Based on the results of collaborative research projects that we have conducted so far, i.e., "Research on Modern Kyoto" (2003-05), "Research on Modern “Old Capital”" (2006-10), "Modern Emperor System and Society" (2011-16), we plan to initiate a joint research project, where we will approach the topic of locality from an interdisciplinary and critical perspective.
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Studies on the Social History of Environmental Problems

Coordinator: IWAKI, Takuji (2020.4 - 2023.3)
Project Description
Early modern Japan was an era of great development but also saw an expansion of production and human living space that resulted in the devastation of nature. Although the rise of various industries brought economic growth, historical sources show that it also caused various environmental problems which are now also recognized as social problems. However, most problems did not spread beyond local communities until the 1950s, when they finally began to be recognized as serious social crises, called kōgai, which critically affected public health and destroyed the living environment. How, then, have people confronted such issues throughout history? This research project will explore various environmental problems from the early modern period through to contemporary times, focusing on the social movements and social structures that framed them. We also plan to compare environmental problems in Japan with those encountered in other countries, aiming to clarify the significance and meaning of such problems for people living with disaster.
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Institutions and models of modern China

Coordinator: MURAKAMI, Ei (2020.4 - 2023.3)
Project Description
This research project to promote institutional history follows on from two earlier projects: Reorganization of Social and Economic Institutions in Modern China (2012-2015) and Social and Economic Institutions in China during the Period of Transition (2015-2019). Based on empirical studies, this project explores the institutions such as customs, common sense, rules, orders, and behavioral patterns, which emerged during the modern period due to social and economic changes and friction between Chinese and foreigners. Using these empirical studies, these institutions are then modeled and compared to models from Japan, India, Europe, and other places. The purpose of this comparison is to highlight both what is unique about Chinese institutions and what they hold in common with those in other parts of the world. Approaching this topic from the perspective of modern Chinese history, this project aims to promote comparative historical studies of institutions and to disseminate the project results.
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A Comparative Study of Classification and Racialization

Coordinator: TAKEZAWA, Yasuko (2020.4 - 2023.3)
Project Description
This project aims to examine the ways in which people in certain societies or regions categorize others, label and racialize them - resulting in the production and reproduction of various forms of socio-economic inequality. It investigates the markers mobilized to categorize and racialize others, whether they are visible phenotypical differences, invisible and mythical bodily features, or cultural embodiments of perceived “differences,” which may relate to the unequal distribution of resources and power. The project addresses how various processes of racialization are reproduced or transformed over the years. We will conduct this project using several different approaches. One approach is based on an international comparison between various different websites, written in Chinese, Japanese and English, relating to genetic testing. It is organized around the research subjects’ “discovery” of their respective ancestries. It is a collaborative study between researchers from both the humanities and genetics studies. Another study, comprising mostly cultural anthropologists in different countries, will attempt to identify and analyze different modalities of visibility/invisibility in racialization based on a synthesis of several intensive ethnographic case studies. A third project is a second-time collaboration with the TEPSIS of EHESS in France (L’ Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales). Here, we will focus on human migration, categorization, and racialization in both the Trans-Pacific and the Trans-Atlantic regions. This project will result in new contributions to the literature in each of the collaborating fields by shedding new light on conjunctions between Trans-Pacific and Trans-Atlantic experiences of racialized differences and inequalities.
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Type C


Fundamental Research of the Kanseki Repository

Coordinator: Christian Wittern (2016.4 - 2021.3)
Project Description
The research seminar “Fundamental Topics in Digital Humanities” held from April 2013 to March 2016 produced as one of its results a first preliminary release of a comprehensive repository of premodern Chinese texts based on clear philological principles called “Kanseki Repository” (www.kanripo.org). However, due to the limited time, only a very rough draft could be produced and some important texts are still missing. This seminar will follow up on these results by improving the scope and descriptory depth of the texts and by developing exemplary methods for using the repository for answering specific research questions. Among these, support for the creation of text-critical editions and a general survey of the characters used in the Repository are on the agenda, but the actual plan will be developed by the members upon start of the seminar.
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Study on the Excavated Manuscripts of the Qin Dynasty

Coordinator: MIYAKE, Kiyoshi (2016.4 - 2021.3)
Project Description
In 2002, city remains dating from the Zhanguo to the Han period were excavated near the village of Liye, Longshan, Hunan province, and over 38,000 strips and boards were discovered. These strips comprise administrative documents dated from 222BCE to 208BCE. This suggests that the area around Liye, a small mountain village located near the boundary of Hunan, Hubei, and Chongqing, was incorporated into the Qin administrative system after the unification carried out by the First Emperor. In this project, we will examine these manuscripts closely, in order to shed light on the political system of the early Chinese emperor. In addition to the Liye discoveries, we will also analyse several Qin strips of unknown origin, which had been smuggled to Hong Kong and recently (in 2003) repatriated by the Yuelu Academy of Hunan University. Several parts of this material, including calendars and records of judicial processes during the Qin, have been already published. Photos and transcriptions of the Qin statutes and ordinances that were found among these strips will also appear soon. Utilizing this material, we intend to achieve our above-mentioned goal.
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A Bibliographic Research on Old Chinese Books Previously Housed in the Kyoto Institute of the Academy of Oriental Culture

Coordinator: YAGI, Takeshi (2016.4 - 2021.3)
Project Description
The Kyoto Institute of the Academy of Oriental Culture was established in 1929 using a grant-in-aid from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan, and it has hence developed into the Department of Oriental Studies of the Institute for Research in Humanities, Kyoto University. The Institute has inherited all the old Chinese books that were once housed in the old one, and the details of the collection can be seen in the Catalogue of Old Chinese Books housed in the Kyoto Institute of the Academy of Oriental Culture, published in 1938. This collection is well known and highly valued in the academic world, particularly because it contains a series of books that once belonged to Tao Xiang, a famous bookkeeper in Tianjin, China. Our research project reexamines the information in the Catalogue and attempts to enhance the accuracy of the Kanseki database, an online resource based on the Catalogue. The project involves the creation of an additional database on the prefaces and postscripts of the books. It will also involve the collection of information about Ex-libris Ownership Stamps and their publication in pictorial books. In the near future, as part of the celebrations of the 90th and 100th anniversaries of the institute, exhibitions will be held with the objective of reviewing and restructuring oriental studies in Japan.
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Buddhist Sculptures and Their Inscriptions in the Longmen Caves of the Northern Dynasties

Coordinator: INAMOTO, Yasuo (2017.4 - 2020.3)
Project Description
The Longmen Caves are one of the most important Buddhist sites in East Asia. In 1941, Mizuno Seiichi and Nagahiro Toshio from the Institute of Oriental Studies (now the Department of Oriental Studies, Institute for Research in Humanities) published the report “A Study of the Buddhist Cave-Temples at Lung-mên, Ho-nan” after conducting fieldwork in the area. The report remains relevant to all research on the Longmen Caves today. Later on, in the 1950s, the two above-mentioned scholars also published the highly acclaimed series entitled “Yun-Kang: The Buddhist Cave-Temples of the Fifth Century A.D. in North China”, dealing with the Yungang Caves in the 1950s. Since the Qing Dynasty, there have been many studies about the enormous number of inscriptions carved in the Longmen Caves. After Mizuno and Nagahiro's visit to the site, for a mere six days, many research topics have been left for scholars to further discuss. In the development of archeology in postwar China, comparative analysis of both textual and stylistic sources has generated new scholarly insights for future research. Yet, even within scholarship concerning the Northern Wei caves of Longmen, opinions remain sharply divided on fundamental issues such as the commissioning and the construction process of the caves and the dating of the major statues. Recently, the Institute of Oriental Studies has identified a rich collection of rubbings of the Longmen inscriptions. The proposed project therefore continues the Institute’s tradition of researching Buddhist cave temples, aiming to reorganize and make full use of the information gathered thus far to rethink the Northern Dynasties statues and their context. The project focuses on reconfirming the transcriptions of the inscriptions and understanding their contents. Based on the information gained in the first stage of our research, we shall consider issues such as the process of creating the caves and the style and iconography of the sculptures through a comprehensive study integrating art-historical, archeological, historical, religious, and social perspectives. In so doing, we hope to form a common foundation of knowledge that will serve as the basis for future Longmen studies.
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Humanities in the 21st Century: An Attempt at Understanding Our Age

Coordinators: OKADA, Akeo; KOSEKI, Takashi; SATŌ, Junji (2018.4 - 2021.3)
Project Description
This research project puts forth three chief aims. 1. The world we are living in is filled with a sense of helplessness. No one can predict its future. When and how was such a world fashioned? What are its essential qualities? Our project tackles these questions from the viewpoint of ‘the crisis of the humanities’. 2. The project adopts a humanist approach, distinct from that of social science. What is central in such an approach is historical inquiry into the origins of ‘Our Age’. The 1970s will doubtlessly be a focus. 3. The project places an emphasis upon the artistic aspect of ‘Our Age’, given the fact that, along with ‘the crisis of the humanities’, ‘the crisis of art’ is form of manifestation for ‘the crisis of human beings’. The project will not only examine various artistic phenomena of ‘Our Age’, but will also attempt to forge meaningful partnerships with those artists who have been painstakingly engaged in artistic creation in such a helpless world. The project adopts a sort of ‘triarchy’ structure. By appointing three leaders, Okada, Sato, and Koseki, each of whom has a different academic background, the project will aim to carry out genuinely inter-disciplinary studies.
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Warfare and Diplomacy in Pre-modern Eastern Eurasia

Coordinators: IWAI, Shigeki; FURUMATSU, Takashi (2018.4 - 2021.3)
Project Description
In Eastern Eurasia, there have been constant exchanges and interactions between pastoral nomads of the eastern part of the Eurasian Steppe and settled agriculturalists of China proper. Northern pastoral nomads founded several powerful nomadic dynasties, based on a strong cavalry force, which was the most preeminent military technology in pre-modern times; they confronted the Chinese dynasties and even conquered China several times. Relations between pastoral nomads from the steppe and agrarian people of China were dynamic and diverse, including military conflict, domination, coexistence and fusion. They can be regarded as the basic patterns of Eastern Eurasian history. This project will focus on the Southern Song history book "Sanchao beimeng huibian", which mainly deals with the diplomatic relations of the Song dynasty with the Jin dynasty of the Jurchen people during the first half of the 12th century, when the Jin dynasty established hegemony in the multi-state system of Eastern Eurasia. We will use the documents included in this book to consider analyze the characteristics of warfare and diplomacy between Nomadic dynasties and Chinese dynasties. In addition, we will examine the impact and influence of the Jin conquest of Northern China on the politics, society and culture of China, including Northern China under the Jin and Southern China under the Southern Song.
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A Study about the Formation of Business Circles in Imperial Japan: 1895-1945

Coordinator: KAGOTANI, Naoto (2018.4 - 2021.3)
Project Description
In the last half of the 19th century, Japan saw the transfer of power from Tokugawa to the imperial court, and the transformation from a system of government based on the bakufu (幕府) domains to a unified state. This was also the period that witnessed the transition to a capitalist economy and the establishment of a modern Japanese state system. After the Meiji Constitution was promulgated in 1889, laying the foundations for the political structure of the state, Japan gradually became unified under the force of nationalism. Therefore, friction increased with Western countries that opposed Japan’s advances. In the Meiji period, Japan entered into the first Sino-Japanese War (日清戦争, 1894-95) and the Russo-Japanese War (日露戦争, 1904-05), and went on to annex Taiwan in 1895 and Korea in 1910. After these two wars, Imperial Japan emerged. The Meiji leadership was assumed by men such as Ito Hirofumi (伊藤博文) and Yamagata Aritomo(山県有明) who came from Choshu (長州) Matsukata Masayoshi (松方正義), who came from Satsuma (薩摩). Es-pecially Matsukata brought to the government comprehensive financial skills. Although many positions were open to outsiders from other domains, the senior statesmen (genro, 元老) came from the Satsuma and Choshu circle. On the other hand, the Meiji government was still in a precarious position, faced with the runaway inflation incurred by printing an excess of paper monies. A campaign of retrenchment began under the direction on Matsukata, who devoted more than sixteen years of his career to Meiji finances. A new land tax (地租改正) and the campaign “Increase Production and Promote Industry (殖産興業),” management of the currency, the establishment of the Bank of Japan (日本銀行, 1882), and adherence to the Global Gold Standard (国際金本位制) were all carried out under his direction. However, starting in 1886, government notes were converted to silver, and a silver standard was established. To help put an end to inflation, factories in the industrial sector, excluding strategic industries such as munitions, minting of currency and communications, were sold off comparatively cheap, to private businessmen, such as Mitsui and Mitsubishi. Close to govern-ment leaders and sharing their goals, these men emerged as leaders of future Zaibatsu(財閥), centered on the Japanese business circle. This Japanese business circle has been called Zaikai (財界). Our new joint research project aims to analyse the role of Zaikai in Imperial Japan’s expansion until 1945. We will use primary materi-als,especially the diaries of Japanese businessmen. We will focus on the diaries of Tutumibayashi Kazue (Jakaruta), Miyoshi Tokusaburo (Tai-pei), and Miwa Tunesaburo (Nagoya).
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A Study of East Asia in the Third Century

Coordinator: MORISHITA, Shōji, (sub:MUKAI, Yusuke) (2018.4 - 2021.3)
Project Description
The purpose of this seminar is to clarify the regional features and the relationships among the societies of China, Korea and Japan in the 3rd century. In this age, after the collapse of the Han dynasty and the formation of Three Kingdoms, the tribal societies of Korea and Japan had developed to the Chiefdom stage. San-Guo-Zhi (三国志) describes these local societies and their changes in detail; also, the number of archaeological records of this area has been increasing recently. Through textual, historical and archaeological studies, we will point out the significant role played by local societies in 3rd century Asian history.
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Reviving the History of 20th Century China by Reviewing Source Materials

ISHIKAWA, Yoshihiro (2019.4 - 2022.3)
Project Description
The history of 20th century China, on one level or another (depending of the field) has been written under the dictates of political parties’ revolutionary ideologies. Not only did these parties have their own self-centered narratives of modern history, but they also collected and compiled historical materials so as to reinforce their narratives. The problem is, however, that they often falsified the source materials when editing them into official documents. As a result, in order to understand 20th century Chinese history, we must first understand how these narratives were formed through the compilation of historical materials. This research project aims to investigate and restore various source documents considered to be basic materials for the study of various areas of modern China, such as politics, the revolutionary movement, literature, art, and so on. This type of research, which makes full use of the original sources scattered around the world to revive the primary documents of 20th century China, will open the way for a fresh understanding of “real” modern Chinese history.
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Studies on the cultures and societies of pre-modern Inner Asia and its adjacent areas

INABA, Minoru (2019.4 - 2022.3)
Project Description
West, South, and East Asia, traditionally regarded as "civilizational centers", have been in contact with each other through maritime and inland routes. Inner Asia (almost synonymous with Central Asia/ Central Eurasia), which served as a contact zone for these areas and at times greatly influenced them, has also been perceived as an independent historico-cultural world. Even today, the common image of Inner Asia is one of deserts and steppes where monolithic, nomadic tribal societies and cultures prevail. However, starting with the last two decades of the 20th century, materials for further researching the history of the area in question have started to become increasingly available. Based on such materials, the issue of the diversity of societies and cultures within Inner Asia has been attracting more and more attention. The purpose of our research project is to shed light on the history and culture of Inner Asia through case studies of its societies and cultural interactions, etc. from antiquity to the early modern period.
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Art and Society: The Various Aspects of Creative Activities in the Modern Age

TAKASHINA, Erika (2020.4 - 2023.3)
Project Description
In recent years, a growing amount of research has focused on examining art from a more multifaceted perspective by looking into its connection with history, culture and society. For example, while conducting research on artists and artworks is fundamental to the field of art, a variety of other approaches to the subject are now also being examined, such as various art movements, urban and lifestyle culture, shifts in the art market, changing patrons, cultural support, the development of journalism and critiques, advertisements and art, the diversification of exhibition spaces, widening the scope of activities at museums and art galleries, as well as research on the recipients of art. This joint research project will contribute further by inviting researchers from other fields, such as those of history, literature, film and design, to participate in workshops which attempt to clarify, in a broad sense, the various segments of connections that artworks and artists have with our society in the modern age. Essentially, we would like to explore the various aspects of art in society by examining specific works and materials, or perhaps the actual artists and events. Depending on the situation, these meetings will be conducted at an art gallery or museum and make the area where displays and exhibits are held the place of study.
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Studies of the Buddhist Cave-temples in the Northern Dynasties (II)

OKAMURA, Hidenori (2020.4 - 2023.3)
Project Description
The Yungang Caves, located near the city of Datong in Shanxi province in China, are a group of Buddhist cave-temples excavated in the latter half of the fifth century by the Northern Wei dynasty. Between 1938 and 1944, following on from investigations of the Xiangtangshan Caves in Hebei province and the Longmen Caves in Henan province, the Research Institute of Oriental Culture, the predecessor of the Institute for Research in Humanities, Kyoto University, carried out investigations of the Yungang Caves and neighboring sites. A report on these investigations was published in the form of the voluminous“Yunkang (1951-1956) ” comprising 16 volumes and 32 fascicules by Mizuno Seiichi and Nagahiro Toshio. This research seminar focuses on the visual materials and field notes collected from such investigations with the goal of systematically digitizing and actively promoting the further use of these research resources and making them available to the public.
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Study of Classical Chinese Corpora

YASUOKA, Kōichi (2020.4 - 2023.3)
Project Description
Since 2010, we have been developing Classical Chinese Corpora. We first constructed the Corpora using MeCab-Kanbun, a morphological analyzer for Classical Chinese texts. Then we applied UD-Kanbun, a dependency parser based on Universal Dependencies, to the Corpora. Using the Corpora, we can now carry out word-level analysis on Classical Chinese texts using word segmentation (tokenization), part-of-speech tagging, and dependency parsing. In this study, we will analyze Classical Chinese texts at phrase and sentence levels, seeking to further enhance the existing Classical Chinese Corpora.
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Chinese Laity's View of Buddhism: Reading the Expanded Collection of the Propagation of Light compiled by Daoxuan in the Tang

FUNAYAMA, Tōru (2020.4 - 2024.3)
Project Description
Based on the methodology and results conducted by "Buddhist Sutras and Doctrines for the Chinese Laity" (2016-20), this projects attempt to shed a new light on the acutal situation of Buddhist Laity in medieval China. As Chinese Buddhism underwent various developments between the fourth and seventh centuries, not only monastics but also laypeople played a large role. Although we can learn about the sutras and treatises studied by monastics through the entire Buddhist canon that is extant today, with regard to lay Buddhists, various questions remain unexpectedly difficult to answer, such as: To what extent did laypeople possess knowledge of Buddhism? On what points was that knowledge similar to and different from the knowledge held by monastics? Were there any shared likes and dislikes of particular Buddhist scriptures and ideas among laypeople? Previous seminars held in this institute studied texts such as the Zhao lun and Hongming ji in order to understand the Buddhism of intellectuals and ordinary people during the Six Dynasties, Sui, and Tang periods. The present research seminar aims to continue this line of inquiry, taking as its main source text the Expanded Collection of the Propagation of Light (Guang hongming ji, 7th c.) – in which the compiler Daoxuan gathered the writings of many lay Buddhists – in order to clarify the real conditions of lay Buddhism in China.
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