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Public Lectures 2018

Grand Prize 2018: JIA Zhangke

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Title
The Core of JIA Zhangke’s Work: Capturing “Contemporary” China in Film
Date
Wednesday, September 19, 2018 (18:30-21:30)
Venue
United Cinema CANAL CITY 13
Commentator
YUKISADA Isao(Film Director), ICHIYAMA Shozo(Film Producer)
Coordinator
ISHIZAKA Kenji(Prof., Japan Institute of the Moving Image; Tokyo Asian Film Festival Asian film director)

After showing Jia Zhangke’s film 'Mountains May Depart',the panel discussion with the presence of Jia Zhangke was held. In this discussion people debated the ' Jia Zhangke's world' widely including the origin of his film making process since his student time and his messages embed in his major works.

Mr. YUKISADA, Commentator
Mr. YUKISADA, Commentator
Mr. ICHIYAMA, Commentator
Mr. ICHIYAMA, Commentator
Prof. ISHIZAKA, Coordinator
Prof. ISHIZAKA, Coordinator

Part 1 Screening of Mountains May Depart

A film capturing the emotions of people swept away by a changing society

The public lecture, held at United cinema CANAL CITY 13, began with a screening of the director’s Mountains May Depart to a packed theater. The work portrays the love between a mother amid the upheavals in Chinese society and her son, living in a distant land with his father.

It was an official competition entry in the Cannes International Film Festival, garnering the Taiwan Golden Horse Best Original Screenplay and Audience Choice Awards, the Asian Film Awards Best Screenplay Award, and more. The audience was enthralled for over two hours by the moving tale of the bonds of love in a changing society.

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Mountains May Depart
2015/35mm/125min
China,France,Japan/Mandarin with Japanese subtitles
The work is about the parents and their son who has been taken in by his father and lived abroad as a young age after leaving his mother who stayed in the hometown in China while the country has been experiencing the massive change.
※ This work was selected for Official film competition section of Cannes International Film Festival, and won Best Original Screenplay, Audience Choice Award in 63th Saint Sebastian International Film Festival, Audience Choice Award in 52nd Taiwan Golden Horse Awards, and Best Screenplay in 10th Asian Film Awards.

Part 2 Panel Discussion

Films have a duty to record the shape of society

forum1-middle1.jpgIn the panel discussion, Professor ISHIZAKA coordinated a discussion with film director Mr. YUKISADA Isao, Mr. ICHIYAMA Shozo, who has produced a number of Mr. JIA's films.

Mr. YUKISADA began by praising Mr. JIA as a director who can truly portray China today, and drive the film industry in Asia. Mr. ICHIYAMA agreed, saying that he felt Mr. JIA was an outstanding director after watching Xiao Wu 〔Pickpocket〕, adding that he offers realism not found in other Chinese films.

Mr. JIA described his joy at receiving the Fukuoka Prize, explaining that he had come to love Japanese film through screenings of KUROSAWA Akira's Rashomon, and films directed by OZU Yasujiro, OSHIMA Nagisa, and others. "I feel I have developed together with Chinese society, and its changes have transformed me. I am fascinated by depicting Chinese society, and have tried to capture it in film from my first attempt. Films have a duty to record the shape of society, and tell us what types of people are living in it. I think OZU does something similar for Japanese households in The Only Son, for example. In China, the prime movie audience is said to be from 16 to 20 years old, and even though film is trending toward mere entertainment, my belief is that it should remain a mirror to examine society and the era we live in."

The commentators then introduced their own favorite films by Mr. JIA. Mr. YUKISADA selected Unknown Pleasures, praising it as a masterpiece in the 'teen film' genre. "The characters try to resist but cannot escape, revealing they lack of any vision for the future." A line made by one of the characters that "It's enough to live to 30" struck him as realistic, making the film unique. Mr. ICHIKAWA chose Platform, explaining that it was the first film they had worked on together and revealing that while "...his filming process is superb, my recollection is that it took an awfully long time."

In closing, Mr. JIA introduced his latest film, Ash Is Purest White, which was just released in China, leaving an audience eager to see his newest work.

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Academic Prize 2018: SUEHIRO Akira

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Title
Forty Years of My Study on Asian Economy: From Catch-up Industrialization to Digital Economy
Date
Saturday, September 22, 2018 (11:00-13:00)
Venue
Science Hall, FUKUOKA CITY SCIENCE MUSEUM 6F
Commentator
OIZUMI Keiichiro(Senior Economist, Economics Department, The Japan Research Institute, Limited)
Coordinator
SHIMIZU Kazushi(Professor, Graduate School of Economics, Kyushu University)

How are we supposed to understand the Asia which is changing rapidly? His dynamic transition to view the Asian economy and his research with repeated trial and error have been introduced. They include with the 'Catch‐up Industrialization' which modes Japan's manufacturing, how the Korean and Taiwanese companies overtook the Japanese ones, and the current digital theory with the technology of data communication and the mass data of consumers which rule the economy theory to regulate the direction of how things are made.

Dr. OIZUMI, Commentator
Dr. OIZUMI, Commentator
In the panel discussion in the second part
In the panel discussion in the second part
Prof. SHIMIZU, Coordinator
Prof. SHIMIZU, Coordinator

Part 1 Keynote Speech

Expanding beyond Thailand to cover all of Asia with a 4-stage Asian economic theory

forum2-middle1.jpgI knew that I wanted to study Asia even before I started university, and in 1972 when the “Boycott Japanese goods” movement began in Thailand I decided my research topic would be Thailand. The monetary crisis of 1997 was a major turning point. I realized just by looking at what was happening in Thailand that I didn’t know enough about Asia overall, and I expanded by scope to include it. My theories of Asian economics follow the model of German industrial theory, and are developed in four stages.

Asian economic theory 1.0 begins from the population explosion. The growth in population flattened economic growth, restraining development in Asia.

I am most concerned with stage 2.0, and here the experience of Japan industrializing as a late-developing nation provided some important hints. Economies which develop later enjoy some advantages over the nations which industrialize first, such as being able to introduce developed technology. Certain conditions must exist to utilize these advantages, however, and in the case of East Asia, I believe the rapid development was due to the formation of social capabilities supporting industrialization at the government level, at the corporate level, and at the factory level.

Stage 3.0 was a review of stage 2.0. The architecture was made open and modular so that, for example, the electronics industry in a late-starting economy could surpass one in an already industrialized nation. I must stress here that the catch-up I describe is not by a nation, but rather at the corporate level. Note that the unit has changed from the nation to the company.

Concerning stage 4.0, I’m afraid I also have no idea what is happening. I think whatever it is, it is totally different from the Asian economic theory that has applied thus far.

Part 2 Panel Discussion

Understanding nation-states as the shift to digital technology accelerates

In response to a question from Mr. OIZUMI about the role of nations in the era of digital economies, Professor SUEHIRO replied “Japanese economic theory suggests that the nation contributed significantly to industrial development in Japan by improving environmental factors such as regulatory systems and education. Even so, it is generally accepted that industrial development is driven by private enterprises. Japan has a national framework actively supporting innovation and its resulting technical revolution, and the government certainly plays a role, but the degree to which the government may interfere is changing. Providing identical support to both small enterprises and mega-corporations will lead to claims, and government fairness would erode. Direct or indirect, I think government support using the conventional approach will be extremely complicated.”

After the discussion a large number of people from the audience, interested in Professor SUEHIRO’s thoughts, engaged him in a lively and productive Q&A session.

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Arts and Culture Prize 2018: Teejan Bai

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Title
The World of Pandavani: A Narrative Singing of the <span class="italic">Mahabharata</span>, the Ancient Indian Epic
Date
Saturday, September 22, 2018 (16:00-18:00)
Venue
Science Hall, FUKUOKA CITY SCIENCE MUSEUM 6F
Speaker
MURAYAMA Kazuyuki(Faculty of Policy Studies Lecturer in Hindi & Urdu)
Speaker
OKITA Mizuho(Part time lecturer of Chuo University)
Coordinator
KOISO Chihiro(Associate Professor of the Faculty of Liberal Art, Kanazawa Seiryo University)

The Mahabharata, is a story of a war fiercely fought in the northern Indian plain around 1000 BC between two groups of princes who were cousins. Dr. Teejan Bai is a leading performing artist and a contemporary exponent of the traditional artistic form of Pandavani. When she sings Pandavani lively with her accompanists, it will create a presence as if we are witnessing a battle of princes.

Although she has suffered doubly in Indian society from prejudice, both as a woman and as a member of a tribal society, with her rare artistic gift and powerful determination she has kept singing. Her success has given courage and encouragement to women and those suffering from repression.

Mr. MURAYAMA, Speaker
Mr. MURAYAMA, Speaker
Ms. OKITA, Speaker
Ms. OKITA, Speaker
Associate professor KOISO, Coordinator
Associate professor KOISO, Coordinator

Part 1 Talk

Surpassing National Boundaries to Bring the Glory of the Mahabharata to All

forum3-middle1.jpgMr. MURAYAMA explained that Pandavani is a performance in song of famous scenes from the Indian national epic, the Mahabharata. The art is centered in Chhattisgarh, India, and sung in Chhattisgarhi, a dialect of Hindi. It has been handed down as a folk performing art in India, similar to the Japanese Naniwa-bushi, he continued. He introduced the three-stringed tambura instrument played by Dr. Teejan Bai, revealing that three gods are said to reside within it, and that the instrument itself is used to present a variety of objects such as a bow, a club, and even a torn-off arm! As it is not a religious rite, it can be performed freely anywhere.

Ms. OKITA introduced the world of the Mahabharata, which spans over 100,000 couplets across 18 volumes. It describes the great succession war of the Bharata, featuring the five sons of the king as the heroes, along with a hundred of their cousins. They are linked to gods through avatars, and the relationships of the gods and heroes sway the story.

The Mahabharata is not a heroic epic with a happy ending, as almost all of the warriors that appear die, and even the main characters cannot escape their sins and deaths, even though they are the children of gods. As a myth, it has significant depth.

Part 2 Performance

The second part was a Pandavani performance by Dr. Teejan Bai. She sang as if possessed, lifting her voice to the accompaniment of the three-stringed tambura she held, and captivated the audience. As the suitors competed for the hand of the princess (Draupadi’s Swayamvara) she held the “bow” in her hand to brilliantly portray shooting the eye out of a fish in an aquarium, using only the fish’s shadow as a guide. She followed with a horrifying depiction of the death of Dushasana, as she smeared blood on and tied her hair. Her exchanges with the musicians were also fascinating, and onlookers were unable to pull their eyes away for the entire performance.

 

Performances
Draupadi’s Swayamvara
The Death of Dushasana

 

Performers
Teejan Bai / Pandavani performer
Keval PRASAD / Tabla 〔drum〕
Manharan Sarva / Dafli 〔tambourine〕
Ramchand NISHAD / vocals, Manjeera 〔cymbals〕
Chait Ram SAHU / Harmonium 〔a type of organ〕
Narottam NETAM / Dholak 〔double-headed drum〕

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Official program reports

Click to see more 2018 reports.