Japan Institute for National Fundamentals

THE 2nd(2015) Terada Mari Japan Study Award

Terada Mari Japan Study Award

Purport of the inauguration of the Terada Mari Japan Study Award

Eighth years ago, we established the Japan Institute for National Fundamentals with our sincere wish to rebuild the solid foundation of Japan and let this nation embody its true self. What we envisage is a Japan that, while retaining the values unique to it, serves as a decent member of the international community by maintaining a broader perspective on world events. First and foremost, it was our earnest desire to contribute as much as we could to the rebirth of Japan by dealing squarely with national issues including the Constitution, national security and education. Indeed, this was the prime motivation for inaugurating our institute.

To make this aspiration a reality, it is imperative to help the international community deepen its understanding of Japan and generate mutual respect between this nation and the rest of the world. Unfortunately, this goal remains far off. Japan remains misunderstood on many accounts. This is particularly true in respect to issues of history, over which Japan is often confronted by a tall wall of misunderstanding even today. Even Western countries that share the same values as Japan are no exception in this regard.

What should be specifically done to dispel such misperceptions? The best answer is to help people abroad increase their knowledge of Japan. To do this, we were considering how to foster talented people as Japan study specialists or Japanologists. Just at that time, Ms. Mari Terada made a very kind offer to JINF. It is my great honor to have been involved in establishing the Japan Study Award, which reflects the great aspiration she shares with all of us.

We sincerely hope this new award inspires young and mid-career researchers in the 21st-century international community to undertake thorough academic research about Japan—everything from its features, history, culture and civilization to politics, the wartime past and values unique to it. We would be delighted if the Japan Study Award helps promote free and sincere studies on Japan.

I am confident that the candid findings—positive or negative—of these researchers on various aspects of Japan—including its successes and failures—can help break down the wall of prejudice toward Japan. Research backed by academic honesty and integrity will always provide a precious source for learning.

It is my sincere hope that the Terada Mari Japan Study Award will increase the number of genuine friends of Japan around the world. At the same time, I believe Japan’s culture, civilization and its values that shape Japanese people’s thinking can contribute to the betterment of the 21st-century international community.

By Yoshiko Sakurai
President of the Japan Institute for National Fundamentals

Outline of Terada Mari Japan Study Award

The Japan Institute for National Fundamentals encourages and honors outstanding works in the field of Japanese studies at home and abroad that contribute to the furthering of understanding of Japan in the areas of politics, national security, diplomacy, history, education and culture, among others.
Every year, the Institute bestows the Japan Study Award on an individual, in principle, and a prize of US$10,000. The annual Japan Study Award program also includes a Japan Study Encouragement Award, which carries a prize of US$5,000. a Japan Study Special Award may be added.
To be eligible for these awards, a research work must be published in book form or in a national or international journal in either Japanese or English within the past five years by a young or mid-career researcher who is a foreign national.
Members of the Japan Study Award Recommendation Committee and relevant experts are asked to recommend a wide range of candidate works by the end of each year. Based on these recommendations, the Japan Study Award Jury selects winners of the Japan Study Award program by the spring of the following year.
An award ceremony and a reception for the winners are held in July each year.

The Second [Terada Mari Japan Study Award]

The works of Recipients of Terada Mari Japan Study Award

Japan Study Award
Edward Marx  Associate Professor, Ehime University
  • “Leonie Gilmour: When East Weds West” (Botchan Books,2013)
Japan Study Encouragement Award
David Hanlon  Professor, University of Hawaii at Mānoa
  • “Making Micronesia : a political biography of Tosiwo Nakayama” (University of Hawaii Press,2014)

Remarks on the selection of award recipients

Edward Marx:“Leonie Gilmour: When East Weds West”

For starters, allow me to refer to my “above-average” interest in the life of sculptor Isamu Noguchi (1904-1988) thanks particularly to two friends of mine. One of them is Sakuya Fujiwara, a former deputy governor of the Bank of Japan and a longtime friend of mine. When Fujiwara was with Jiji Press, I read a book he gave me in the latter half of the 1980s. He co-authored the book, titled “Ri Koran: Watashi no Hansei” (Half My Life as Li Hsiang Lan), with Yoshiko Yamaguchi, the wife of Isamu Noguchi. Yamaguchi had been popular under the Chinese screen name of Li Hsiang Lan before and during World War II. As for Isamu Noguchi, Japanese author Masayo Duus in 2000 published a book titled “Isamu Noguchi—Shukumei no Ekkyosha,” which was translated into English later as “The Life of Isamu Noguchi: Journey Without Borders.” The author’s younger brother, Shohei Umezawa, a former professor at Shobi University, who is another longtime friend of mine. By the way, to be honest, I have not read through his sister’s book yet.

“Leonie Gilmour: When East Weds West” (Santa Barbara: Botchan Books) authored by Edward Marx—whose Japanese version “Reoni Girumoa: Isamu Noguchi no Haha no Shogai” was published by Sairyusha—sufficiently satisfied my curiosity. As I read this book, I thought Leonie (1873-1933) exemplified a typical American woman who would be intelligent and make a decision on her own at each key phase of her life. She studied at Bryn Mawr College in Pennsylvania, whose entrance exam was said to be harder than Harvard’s. Actually, to pass the exam, she had to translate at least three of four foreign language sentences on site. The exam also included an essay test that required her to tell what made John Milton’s masque “Comus” outstanding--the narrativity, the characterization or the beauty of its linguistic presentation. Furthermore, for the history test, she had to choose one of the three subjects—ancient history, British history and American history. Among her seniors at Bryn Mawr College was Umeko Tsuda who founded Tsuda College in Tokyo.

Leonie was recruited by Japanese poet Yonejiro Noguchi, who happened to be in the United States, to edit his English poems. Then, they fell in love and Isamu was born. As anti-Japanese campaigns emerged in American society even before the Russo-Japanese War, Leonie raising a Japanese American child had to cope with harsh circumstances. While Noguchi subsequently had affairs with another woman, Leonie, had relations with another Japanese man in Japan and gave birth to a girl, Ailes, whom she raised, alongside Isamu, as a single mother. Leonie was so keen to let Isamu become an artist that she sent Isamu back to the United States to receive education in her mother country. She also wanted Ailes to receive American education. So, she later returned to the United States with the daughter.

In his book, Mr. Marx traces the American lady’s life in detail—from birth to death. It is based on a huge amount of letters—and essays—written by Leonie and those sent to her from relatives, teachers, Yonejiro, her children, among others. In the book, Leonie Gilmour is depicted as a woman who was always honest to herself whether she was in the United States or Japan while Yonejiro and Isamu became so famous in their respective genres. The scholarly way of tracing Leonie’s life by Mr. Marx can be praised as a sociological approach. As such, he deserves to receive this year’s Japan Study Award.

By Tadae Takubo
Vice President of the Japan Institute for National Fundamentals
Japan Study Award Jury

David Hanlon "Making Micronesia : a political biography of Tosiwo Nakayama"

On May 10, 1979, the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) became independent with Tosiwo Nakayama inaugurated as its first president. The FSM, comprising Chuuk (formerly Truk), Yap, Pohnpei and Kosrae, occupies a vast area in the Western Pacific. The award-winning book analyzes the past, present and future aspects of Micronesia while focusing on Tosiwo Nakayama. He was born to a Japanese father, Masami Nakayama, and a native mother in Namonuito Atoll, 246 kilometers northwest of the Chuuk Islands, on November 23, 1931. He died on March 29, 2007.

The FSM joined the United Nations in 1991.

Needless to say, the area was administered by Japan under the League of Nations mandate for a period from1920 to 1945, following colonial rule by Spain and then Germany. During World War II, it became the site of a hard fought battle.

The book scrutinizes how the area was administered before and after the League of Nations granted Japan the South Pacific Mandate and analyses the post-WWII developments under the United Nations trusteeship with the United States assuming the role of the trustee. It depicts how a number of Japanese Micronesians—Tosiwo Nakayama in particular—led so many islands with different interests to close ranks for realizing the independence of Micronesia. Indeed, this is a rigorous scholarly book.

By Katsuhiko Takaike
Vice President of the Japan Institute for National Fundamentals
Japan Study Award Jury

Professor David Hanlon of the University of Hawaii who received the Japan Study Encouragement Award 2015 contributed a special article as follows entitled:” Tosiwo Nakayama, Micronesia and Japan.”
>>Click here

Award Jury

ChairYoshiko Sakurai President, Japan Institute for National Fundamentals (JINF)
Vice ChairTadae Takubo JINF Vice President and Professor Emeritus, Kyorin University
Takashi Ito Professor Emeritus, University of Tokyo
Sukehiro HirakawaProfessor Emeritus, University of Tokyo
Toshio WatanabePresident, Takushoku University
Katsuhiko Takaike JINF Vice President and lawyer

Award Recommendation Committee

George Akita Professor Emeritus, University of Hawaii
James E. AuerProfessor Emeritus, Vanderbilt University
Brahma ChellaneyProfessor of Strategic Studies, Center for Policy Research, India
Kevin DoakProfessor at Georgetown University
Vassili MolodiakovRussian professor at the Institute of Japanese Identity, Takusyoku University
Brandon PalmerAssociate professor of history at Carolina Coastal University
Koh Se-kaiProfessor Emeritus, Tsuda College
Henry Scott StokesFormer Tokyo Bureau Chief, New York Times
Arthur WaldronProfessor University of Pennsylvania