Understanding environment through culture, UEHIRO×WASEDA Seminar series

Hiroshima Oysters with no harm


Final Report -“True Coexistence”-

What is “true coexistence”? What I wanted to think through this class is “What is true coexistence?”  I usually live in Tokyo, but now I realize that most of the energy and food are supplied from the local area.  And the city that had  nuclear power plants as an energy supply area like Futaba Town lost important things that could not be bought with money due to the Great Tohoku Earthquake.  On the other hand, life in Tokyo continues unchanged before and after the earthquake.  Is this really “true coexistence”?   What I learned from Atsushi Funahashi, a Film director The lesson of the film director Atsushi Funahashi gave me […]

Final Report Chang Vivian

Introduction On June 28th – June 30th, our class went on a small trip to Takahata in Yamagata prefecture. It took about around 2 hours by taking the shinkansen. The goal of this trip was to let us have a first-hand experiences through the fieldwork at the local farms, to get an  understanding of the environment not only through the physical surroundings and people there, but also understand the environment through culture in Takahata and how culture shapes for environment and sustainability.   Day 1 When we first arrived at the station, we were told that it is one of the few stations that has an onsen inside of the station. Then […]

Final Report

Having taken lectures throughout our 15-week course of “Understanding the Environment through Culture, Field Study of Cross Border Design”, I am now confident to say that I have learned a lot about the environment from different perspectives. From those lectures held in class, we spent most of the time learning about how plastics waste is destroying not only human’s living environment but also natural habitats, what measures and solutions out there that we can take to tackle plastics related issues, how harmful it is to use chemical pesticides and fertilizers in farming and why we should support organic farming. Apart from that, I also had a chance to go on […]

Final Report by Hannah Choi


The Organic Farming Experience in Takahata

Childhood Dreams When I was a child, I used to wonder about what life would be like as a country farm girl.  Having only ever known cities or suburban neighborhoods, I was naturally curious about it, and would often imagine highly idealized visions of a rural lifestyle for myself to enjoy. In these imaginations, farms were a green paradise where humans, plants, and animals happily coexisted together.  I also developed a strong love of nature at this point in my life. Of course, I eventually learned the truth about modern commercialized farming and its questionable practices after I became older. Still, my love of nature never faded,  and led me […]

Final Report by Sumire Otani

Thinking About the Environment Through Culture: Final Report   08/01/19 Sumire Otani   Introduction I spent my childhood in Akita prefecture, and growing up I was always surrounded by nature. This experience nurtured my awareness of environmental issues, and this led me to take a course on environmental economics last semester. I learned that environmental problems are considered as a type of externality, and they try to ​​internalize them by using economic methods. Environmental taxes are one example, which is applied to internalize the cost of environmental damage by putting the same amount of tax on pollutants as the marginal environmental damage amount. Emissions trading is also another economic means, […]

Final Essay


The Environment, and Our Responsibility Towards it

Thinking about the environment through culture. That was interesting. Though easy to understand why culture and the environment are two interwoven factors that constantly affect one another, its not a point of view I find myself or many others looking from when we speak of the environment. Through hands on experience and field trips, this class encouraged such a way of thinking, and taught me several new things as well.   The first field trip we had within the class was to an area called Kamakura. A charming place, really. We were split into groups and tasked with interviewing people around the Kamakura area about various environmental issues, to gauge […]

Final Report (Aya Hiyama)

Their cooperation is what creates the Takahata’s agriculture farming and leads to their further prosperity.

An Experience Gave Us A Sense of Ethics

  An Experience Gave Us A Sense of Ethics Final Report Understanding the Environment through Culture Aino Owada     It was a great pleasure for me to join the class, “Understanding the Environment through Culture” and to learn things both from lectures and fieldworks to Kamakura and Takahata. Through this class, I gained a lot of lessons including things significant but often missed to recognize – especially by people in the city. This is because it is (or seems) trivial, indirect or even invisible in urban area, where a large amount of second or third information precedes. My experience through the fieldwork specifically in Takahata enabled me to SEE, […]

Final Report

Long time no see, thank you for open this page! My name is Ryota Takagi. I usually study law, but I love studying every fields. The reason why I took this course, “Nature and Culture,” is that it seemed interesting for me, and it was one of the subjects I have never learnt.   Looking back this course, I have faced with some difficulties related to language. Here, I introduce my experience, from the view of “an ordinary Japanese student.” I am glad if you understand my thoughts, even a little part of it.   Somebody read this essay may already knows that this course was mainly conducted in English. […]

The things unseen

    First, I want to talk about myself before class. Of course, I was interested in environmental issues but had no idea what should I do first. It was alright because I didn’t necessarily have to study them. However, when the exchange program between Japan and Vietnam which I got involved in was started and the main theme became ‘‘Sustainability’’, I was exposed to the situation that I had to study the issues. That was the only reason to take this class: I had to do that.   During the class, mainly we got lectures but conducted two fieldworks in the middle and the end of the class. First […]

Final Report by Fumio Igarashi

Throughout the whole course, I learned about environment from multiple aspects. We had lectures about plastics pollution, nuclear energy and agriculture etc, and went to Kamakura and Yamagata for field work. Kamakura For the first filed work, we went to Komachi Dori and Yuigahama Beach. Since my team focused on the  alternatives of plastics, I observed the distribution of plastic packaging from the sellers to the customers. For example, the stuff of a honey shop was offering free sample drink to the customer, using single-use plastic cups. I thought it was extremely “Mottainai”, if not using glass cups, using paper cups would be better. In another ice cream shop, they […]

Final Report by Lin Tzu Fang

Weeks have gone by, but if I close my eyes and tune out the bustling streets of Tokyo, I can still picture myself in the vineyards of Takahada, listening to the slight patter of rain on vinyl and Arae-san’s stories about the local people. I can still remember the elementary school we visited, donned with wooden flooring and filled with the chattering of children. I can see the huge windows overlooking mountains and lush green fields, an expanse of land as far as the eye can see. This fieldwork opportunity was the first time I’ve ever experienced organic farming up close, and Takahada will always have a special place in […]

Takahata Final Report

by Luna Miyamura

Takahata 2019 Final Report

By: Miyabi Nakae (1M180322-0)

final report_shinnosuke miura


Final Report, Yuya Kayanuma

In this class “Understanding Nature through Culture”, I learnt the framework which is required to ponder the relationship between human and nature. Particularly, the experience in the field work is invaluable for a person like me who hardly has knowledge about local lives and organic agriculture. In this report, along a time sequence I would like to explain what I had learnt in the field work which was held in Takahata town in Yamagata prefecture.   ・1 day   In the beginning of the field work, we went to Uriwari rock garden park which used to be a quarry of which rocks have peculiar warmth so that utilized for various […]

Hiroshima field trip reaction- Tzu-Yin Kao

Due to my schedule overlapping with the main field trip from this class to Yamagata Prefecture, 5 of us including our professors and Teacher assistant went to Yokohama for our make-up field trip instead. Even though we did not get to visit the organic agriculture by ourselves in Yamagata, but the first time visiting Hiroshima with the impressions combined of history, nature and culture was just unforgettable for me.  Our flight arrived around noon on the first day, it only took around 1.5hour on the plane to reach. The conversation we had on the plane from the “comparative case study” between Taiwan and Eastern Europe to the reconazation of history […]

Thinking About the Environment Through Culture: Takahata (Miu Nicole Takagi)

Introduction: Godzilla, Takahata, and Chemicals Godzilla awakens from its slumber and empowered by radiation, attacks Japan. Godzilla, a behemoth of a monster, is a cultural icon that is globally known. But how does this Japanese icon connect to the environment and especially culture? In this 2019 Spring semester’s “Thinking About the Environment Through Culture” course, our class had the opportunity to visit Takahata on the 28th through the 30th in June 2019, to understand and discover the realities and alternatives to modern-day farming; alternatives especially to the use of chemicals in farms. This report will describe my experience at Takahata before eventually connecting Takahata and Godzilla. But before I do […]

Jin Puyang Final Report


Final Essay~Something that can be only learnt in actual experience (KWON Taeyoung)

From 28th to 30th of June, our class had opportunity to visit Takahata as a fieldwork to learn how organic farming is operated. Since I was born in urban area, I did not have a chance to experience directly related to life of agriculture. It was worthwhile to get out of the city, which is crowded with people and to be part of nature. Takahata, located in Yamagata Prefecture of Northeast part of Japan, is well-known for their organic farming free from agricultural pesticides. Each local school has their own farms and three hours of agricultural education would be provided for the sake of mutual agricultural interaction of local people. […]