It took awhile to reach Iriomote. From Tokyo, our flight to Ishigaki came with a transit in Naha. A few long bus rides through sugar plantations and we finally caught a ferry to Iriomote after a night over at an Ishigaki hotel. There isn’t an airport in Iriomote. It’s only accessible by ferry, which in itself already makes it feel detached enough for me, who won’t willingly travel by sea unless absolutely necessary. Geographically, Iriomote is located inside the Yaeyama chain of islands, southmost of Japanese territory. It was closer to Taiwan than the main Japanese islands on the map. Climate-wise, it was subtropical. In December, the temperature was mercurial, […]
Final Report of a 6-month journey by HOW, Yu Wen Vanessa (Singapore) Before everything Slightly more than 2 years ago, a girl from a cosmopolitan city packed her bags, took a plane, and landed on the shores of Japan. The girl had spent all 18 years of her life in Sunny Island Singapore, and most of her time indoors, where she escaped from the unforgiving heat that scorched her skin till it turned red. To say that the girl was excited to explore the grand nature that can be found in Japan was an understatement. Sure, her country is pretty green, thanks to city planning. However, she has never seen nature […]
The main field trip for this course was the trip to Iriomote Island, Okinawa second largest island. I have never been to Okinawa before, but my image of Okinawa is clean and beautiful beaches with a very different type of food from the mainland, including the famous Goya Chanpuru dish which was pretty much the only Okinawa food I knew prior to the trip. I did not acknowledge how far Okinawa Islands are away from the mainland Japan until I realized how long we had to travel to get there. Iriomote Island was so much closer to Taiwan than the mainland Japan. We had some lectures on the Iriomote Island […]
Final Report by Anisa Shafiyya Harnantyari – Indonesia
Achieving Coexistence Between People and Nature by Anisa Shafiyya Harnantyari – Indonesia Environmental problems are complex to solve, and various efforts have been carried out in order to minimize and ultimately solve the problem. In “Think of the Environment though Culture”, we focused on the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and learned its relationship with the local people and their culture who are directly affected by it. In this course, we conducted two field works: Kamakura Field Work and Iriomote Island Field Work. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), also known as Agenda 20130, is a set of 17 global goals constructed by the United Nations in September […]
Thinking about the Environment through Culture: A Reflection
Over the course of this class, I was able to participate in fieldwork trips to Ogawa town in Saitama prefecture, Takahata in Yamagata prefecture, Shibecha, Kushiro, Tsurui, and Nijibetsu in Hokkaido, and finally, Tomioka and Kawanaka in Fukushima prefecture. In addition, I also had the opportunity to attend the very first Organic Lifestyle Expo in Tokyo.