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[May 2] Book Talk: Population Sciences and Discourses in Modern Japan

Updated: Apr 23

Date: May 2, 2024 (Thursday)

Time: 2:00PM HK standard time (7:00AM GMT, May 1 – 11:00PM PST)

In Science for Governing Japan's Population, Aya Homei examines the evolution of population-related disciplines in Japan from the 1860s to the 1960s, highlighting the symbiotic relationship between the development of population sciences, the emergence of the term ‘population’ (jinkō), and Japan’s modernization. Through this historical lens, Homei uncovers the intricate connections between population, sovereignty, and scientific discourse, offering fresh insights into Japan's demographic governance.

In Wombs of Empire: Population Discourses and Biopolitics in Modern Japan, Sujin Lee navigates the discourse surrounding population during interwar and wartime Japan, highlighting these periods as pivotal arenas where conflicting visions of modernity clashed. Lee challenges entrenched views of motherhood and population by examining the influence of gender norms, contemporary knowledge, and governmental strategies. Lee exposes how demographic concerns fueled ethnonationalism, racism, colonialism, imperialism, and gender disparities throughout Japan's modern era.

Speaker: Dr. Aya Homei

Reader, Japanese Studies, The University of Manchester

Speaker: Prof. Sujin Lee

Pacific and Asian Studies, Assistant Professor, University of Victoria

Discussant: Dr. Mina Marković

PhD Student, Japanese Studies, University of Cambridge

Moderator: Prof. Edwin Michielsen

Japanese Studies, Assistant Professor, The University of Hong Kong

All are welcome. No registration is required.

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