Introduction to Japanese Society

This is the course webpage for Introduction to Japanese Society (2022), Friday Period 3.

Syllabus: 19J2003-日本社会入門
Grading Rubric: Introduction to Japanese Society Rubric 2022
Active Learning Hours Portfolio: ALHP for IJS

Class Text:
The following open access book is the basic resources for this course: Statistical Handbook of Japan 2022

Video Lecture Archive 2020:

In 2020, when this course had to be completely online, I made video lectures. They are collected together in the Video Lecture Archive 2020. You may also consult these for revision purposes.

 

Week 1 (7 October, ONLINE) : The Japanese Archipelago – geography, climate, territory

Course explanation. Each class includes the following components:

Lecture: A short lecture (10-25 minutes). The lecture materials (slides and script) are available by clicking the link.

On-demand materials & discussion time: Read/watch the materials in the on-demand materials pages. You may navigate around the materials page using this navigation bar:

On-demand materials navigation bar: IJS homepageWk1, Wk2, Wk3, Wk4, Wk5, Wk6, Wk7, Wk8, Wk9, Wk10, Wk11, Wk12, Wk13

Or use the links in each week below. Discuss in small groups and prepare questions. This week’s materials are here: Wk1.

Q&A (Socrative): Submit your questions about the lecture/materials via Socrative (or Zoom chat for online classes). These will be answered towards the end of the lesson. Log in to Socrative here.

Mini-exams: These are 30-minute tests in Weeks 3, 6, 9 and 13. They are the main part of your assessment for the term. See below for the questions.

 

Week 2 (14 October, ONLINE): Population – population shrinkage, rural depopulation, aging society

Lecture: .

On-demand materials & discussion time: This week’s materials are here: Wk2.

Q&A (Socrative): Log in to Socrative.

 

Week 3 (21 October, IN THE CLASSROOM): Multicultural Japan – minorities, urban vs rural, prefectural characteristics

Mini exam question 1. Watch the video lecture by Kate Raworth. With reference to her key arguments, give one or more examples of how Japan can “thrive” given its shrinking population.

Lecture: .

On-demand materials & discussion time: This week’s materials are here: Wk3.

Q&A (Socrative): Log in to Socrative.

 

Week 4 (28 October): The State – parliament, bureaucracy, local authorities

Lecture: .

On-demand materials & discussion time: This week’s materials are here: Wk4.

Q&A (Socrative): Log in to Socrative.

 

Week 5 (4 November): The Economy – industry, agriculture, business

Lecture: .

On-demand materials & discussion time: This week’s materials are here: Wk5.

Q&A (Socrative): Log in to Socrative.

 

Week 6 (11 November): Work – full-time work, part-time work, male-female (in)equality

Mini exam question 2. With reference to a specific problem caused by gender inequality in Japan, how might Japanese society positively benefit from having gender balance quotas (50-50) in regional and national parliaments.

Lecture: .

On-demand materials & discussion time: This week’s materials are here: Wk6.

Q&A (Socrative): Log in to Socrative.

 

Week 7 (25 November): Households – family structure, housing, declining birthrates

Lecture: .

On-demand materials & discussion time: This week’s materials are here: Wk7.

Q&A (Socrative): Log in to Socrative.

 

Week 8 (2 December): Class – “middle class Japan”, wealth and poverty

Lecture: .

On-demand materials & discussion time: This week’s materials are here: Wk8.

Q&A (Socrative): Log in to Socrative.

 

Week 9 (9 December): Education – compulsory education, higher education, qualifications and training

Mini exam question 3. “Class differences in Japan are created mainly by unequal access to education.” What are some of the arguments for and against this statement?

Lecture: .

On-demand materials & discussion time: This week’s materials are here: Wk9.

Q&A (Socrative): Log in to Socrative.

 

Week 10 (16 December): Leisure – sport, pop culture, entertainment

Lecture: .

On-demand materials & discussion time: This week’s materials are here: Wk10.

Q&A (Socrative): Log in to Socrative.

Active Learning Hours Report Deadline, Friday 16 December, 14:10, by email.

 

Week 11 (23 December): The Environment – disasters, energy, nature

Lecture: .

On-demand materials & discussion time: This week’s materials are here: Wk11.

Q&A (Socrative): Log in to Socrative.

 

Week 12 (20 January): The Movement of People – relocation, migration, tourism

Lecture: .

On-demand materials & discussion time: This week’s materials are here: Wk12.

Q&A (Socrative): Log in to Socrative.

 

Week 13 (27 January): Japan in International Society – international relations, defense, contributions to international society

Mini exam question 4. What are the two most important measures that the Japanese government can take to protect the lives of people living in Japan in the 21st century?

Lecture: .

On-demand materials & discussion time: This week’s materials are here: Wk13.

Q&A (Socrative): Log in to Socrative.

 

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