Year: 2010

SIETAR Japan, Kansai Chapter, November 2010    “The Effects of Acquired Disability on Interpersonal Relationships in Japan: An Intercultural Approach”

Presenter:  Prof. Jeff Berglund  ( Kyoto University of Foreign Studies)

Date:       Sunday  March 14,  2010  (4:00pm-6:00pm)

Place:    Takatsuki Shiritsu Sogo Shimin Koryu Center, 3rd Floor (Yume-Kobo)

            ( 1 minute from JR Takatsuki Station),  Tel. 0726-85-3721


Fee:        500 yen for members and students, 1,000yen for non-members

Language:  English with Japanese summary



Description of presentation:

The presenter, who has lived in Japan for 40 years, hosted the program “Living with Disabilities” on NHK educational TV from April of 1999 to March of 2009.  During  that time he interviewed more than 400 people with more than 60 different kinds of disability or chronic illness.  He will introduce his master’s thesis and relate it to the total experience of disability in Japan.  The presentation will begin with a short look at one segment of the TV program in which a man with cerebral palsy talks about the human rights of disabled people.  We will examine three topics:

1)The framing of disability in Japan and in the United States.  2)The transition experience in suddenly acquired disability.  3)The application of intercultural theories and concepts to the disability experience.  There will be short Q and A sessions after the introduction of each topic.  In examining the transition from being a member of the able-bodied majority culture to being a member of the disabled minority culture, we can explore some of the problems in the communication between the abled and the disabled.



Profile of presenter:

Graduated from Carleton College in 1970 with B. A. in religion.  Has been living and teaching in Japan for 39 years.  Currently professor of intercultural communication at Kyoto University of Foreign Studies.  Has extensive experience interviewing people with disabilities.  M. A. from University of the Pacific, 2009.


SIETAR Japan, Kansai Chapter, September 2010    “Promoting Multicultural Awareness: Teaching about Prejudice and Discrimination in the Context of Japan’s Diverse Populations”

Presenter:   Prof. Makiko Deguchi (Kobe College) and Prof. Margaret Kim

             (Doshisha Women’s College)

Date:       Sunday September 26, 2010  (2:00pm-4:00pm)

Place:       Nishinomiya Daigaku Koryu Center (ACTA East Tower 6F, Seminar Rm2),

            2 minutes walk from Hankyu Nishinomiya Kitaguchi Station.

    , Tel.(0798)69-3155

Fee:         500 yen for members and students,  1,000 yen for non-members

Language:   Japanese


Description of presentation:


It is easy for Japanese people to remain ignorant of the experiences of diverse populations in Japan’s homogenous society, but it is imperative that we increase multicultural awareness and competency among Japanese university students so that they are prepared to deal with people with diverse cultural backgrounds.  Using a Japanese educational manga textbook based on the experiences of prejudice and discrimination of diverse residents, we devised a group project that incorporated a group skit and PowerPoint presentation in English.  Student evaluations indicated that they broadened their awareness, learned about different ethnic groups, found the project enjoyable and useful.


Profile of presenters:

Makiko Deguchi

Makiko Deguchi received her Ph.D. in cultural psychology from Boston College in 2006 and taught at St. Lawrence University, Psychology Department, in upstate New York for three years. She is currently an associate professor in the English Department at Kobe College and teaching English academic writing.  


Margaret Kim

Margaret Kim has a BA from the University of Michigan in Asian Studies/Japanese language and an MA from the School for International Training in Teaching English as a Second Language. She is currently teaching at Doshisha Women’s College.


Joint Meeting by SIETAR-Kansai and JSMR(Japan Society for Multicultural Relations)-Chubu/Kansai Theme: Language Education for Multicultural Society

Presenters:  1) Yoko Matsuda (School of Economics, University of Hyogo)

             2) Akie Tomozawa (Faculty of International Studies and Liberal

                Arts,  Momoyama Gakuin University)

Date:  Saturday, July 10, 2010,   14:00-17:00

       (There’s a party at a restaurant after the meeting. About 3000 yen?.)

Place:  Ryukoku University Osaka Umeda Campus,

      (14 F, Hilton Plaza West Office Tower, 2-2-2, Umeda, Kita-ku, Osaka City)


         Tel: 06-6344-0218, Fax: 06-6344-0261

Fee:  Free   (Both members and non-members are welcome.)

Language:  Japanese  (Q&A can be in English.)

Inquiries and Registration:   Prior registration is requested for attendance and the party.

Please send an e-mail to Yoko Matsuda


Description of the presentations

1) Multilayered structure of Australian language-in-education policies: Focusing on Multiculturalism  (Yoko Matsuda)

     Australia transformed its ‘White Australia policy’ to ‘Multiculturalism’ in the early 1970s. The first national language policies were formulated in 1987, followed by some revised versions since then. They centered around promotion of plural language education at schools, based on the multiculturalism. 

     Australian multiculturalism has three basic principles, including ‘economic efficiency’ as well as ‘cultural respect’ and ‘social justice’. These three principles sometimes cause conflict over which to come first on a particular issue.  Ethnic identity as a group was valued at the earlier stage in 70s -80s, but some criticism against valuing ethnic identity has been raised, such as ‘multiculturalism would divide the society,’ and ‘it assumes the white controls over the non-white.’ Considering these different opinions multi-layered language policies have been developed. However, these policies cause some conflicting situations at school between the maintenance of immigrant and Aboriginal languages, Asian languages for economic purposes and traditional European languages, while we can find a new phenomenon caused by the cross-over between various languages taught at schools. Also ‘intercultural language learning’ has been giving a prospect of paradigm shift in language education field.


2)Language education of “migrating” children – searching for an immigrant society of “Japan model” (Akie Tomozawa)


     The number of children whose mother tongue is not Japanese has been increasing rapidly. According to a survey conducted by MEXT( the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology) in September 2008, the number of foreign children who require Japanese language teaching is 28,575, (12.5% increase compared to the previous year), and the number of Japanese children who require Japanese language teaching is 4,895, (11.7% increase compared to the previous year) . In total over 33,000 children whose mother tongue is a language other than Japanese are now studying at Japanese schools. Teachers who encounter these non-Japanese speaking children have been struggling with them in the classes day by day without enough knowledge, experience, supporting personnel, budget and support system. Education for foreign children is not considered to be a ‘right and duty’ of the national government but a mere ‘favor’.  That’s the reason for the ad hoc treatment of these children’s education.

     In 1990s, sudden increase of ‘New-comers’ whose mother tongues are not Japanese, such as Japanese Latinos, Returnees from China (abandoned after the war), Indo-Chinese refugees and children of international marriage, attracted attention of teachers and some effort has been given to improve their situation. However, the educational issue of ‘Old-comers’, such as Korean-Japanese and Chinese who’ve been in Japan for many years and speak only Japanese, has not been widely discussed.

     It reflects distress of Japanese society caused by the rapid increase of foreign residents with neither clear government policy for accepting immigrants nor a vision of the future Japanese society. What is the meaning of ‘multicultural society’ in Japan?  The analysis of current situation at school will give us an insight into a possible vision for the future.


Profiles of the presenters

1) Professor at the Department of International Economics, University of Hyogo.  MA from Osaka University and University of Rochester in the US in linguistics.  Ph.D. (socio linguistics) from Osaka University.  Research interests are language policies and multiculturalism in Australia, intercultural communication and teaching Japanese as a second language in Australia and Japan. Publications include Language-in-education policies in multicultural Australia, Hituji Shobo, 2009, “ Identity in intercultural communication education for multicultural society” Jinbun Ronshu, 2001.


2) BA from Osaka University for Foreign Studies (English major), MA from History Department of University of Wisconsin at Madison. Teaching at Momoyama Gakuin University (St. Andrews University) from 1991. Major fields of study are Japanese as a Second Language and Language policies.  The recent publication is Handbook of Language and Ethnic Identity: Disciplinary and Regional perspectives, Oxford University Press, 2010, (coauthor).