The National Museum of Ethnology (Minpaku) is a research center for ethnology and cultural anthropology.
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Staff Members

HIROSE Koujirou
HIROSE KoujirouHIROSE Koujirou
Department of Globalization and Humanity・Associate Professor
Research Specialization
  • Japanese religious history, folklore
Individual Research Projects
  • An Anthropological Study of the Concept of “Barrier-free”
Personal website

Academic Qualifications

  • B.A. Kyoto Univ. 1991
  • M.A. Kyoto Univ. 1993
  • D. Litt. Kyoto Univ. 2000

Research Interests

  • Anthropological Study on the Handicapped Culture
  • HistoricalSstudy on New Eligions in Modern Japan

Current Research Topics

  • I have been studying the history of new religions in Modern Japan, especially I am interested in Omotokyo. I have been also doing my fieldwork on biwa-hoshi (blind minstrel) and itako (blind shaman). Now I have started the new research on Reiyukai, one of the greatest Buddhism sects based on documents and interviews. In my study on new religions, I have focused on the welfare work of each religious society. I have also continued my fieldwork on blind religionists or biwa (lute) players in Japan. Besides this, I will try anthropological methodology on the handicapped culture. I am planning the inquiry into the occupation, life-style and history of the disabled in the U.S.A. and various countries. This comparative study will be very useful for the promotion of “barrier-free” or “universal design” system of museums.

Research Keywords

Japan, Tohoku, Kyushu, Kyoto, Japanese, History, Religion, Welfare, Culture

Publications (English publications only)

2010
Various Possibilities of “Braille Power”: In Search of the New Image of Louis Braille in the 21st Century. MINPAKU Anthropology Newsletter 30: 10–11.
2010
The Richness of Touch: The Paradoxical Meanings of Disability in Japanese Culture. THE EAST ASIAN LIBRARY JOURNAL 13 (2): 59–85. Princeton University.
2006
Universal Museum: Efforts to Create and Passions for Opening. Mimpaku Anthropology Newsletter 23: 13.
2006
Touch and Grow Rich: You Can Touch Our Museum! Mimpaku Anthropology Newsletter 22: 10.
2003
Reconsidering Japanese Religious History: The Aum Incident and Blind Culture in Modern Japan. The Journal of the International Institute. University of Michigan.
2003
“Judo” or “Aikido”: Propagation Strategies of Tenrikyo in the United States. Progress. Tenrikyo Mission New York Center.
1997
The Cosmology of Mind and Body. Orient (July). Florida, U.S.A.