[INDOLOGY] Closing of Humanities and Social Science Departments in Japanese Universities [discussion]

Birgit Kellner kellner at asia-europe.uni-heidelberg.de
Mon Sep 21 16:36:31 UTC 2015

Dear colleagues,

you may have heard of the Japanese government's plans to close down
humanities and social science departments at national universities. A
decree to this effect was issued earlier this year, and would affect
altogether 86 universities. Many of these universities -- Kyoto and
Tokyo appear to have resisted -- would stop enrolling new students
already in the coming year, and phase out all (!) humanities and social
science programs. Having myself earned a PhD in Japan, I am deeply
shocked by this proposal.

Considering Japan's long-standing traditions in Indology and Buddhist
Studies, this should be of great concern to all in the field. A petition
has been initiated, and can be signed here:


Below I am attaching a posting to H-ASIA that also contains a link to an
informative article in the THE.

With best regards,

Birgit Kellner

-------- Weitergeleitete Nachricht --------
Betreff: 	H-Asia: Closing of Humanities and Social Science Departments
in Japanese Universities [discussion]
Datum: 	Mon, 21 Sep 2015 12:03:57 -0400
Von: 	H-Net Notifications <drupaladmin at mail.h-net.msu.edu>
An: 	kellner at asia-europe.uni-heidelberg.de
<kellner at asia-europe.uni-heidelberg.de>

H-Net <https://networks.h-net.org/>

Greetings Birgit Kellner,
A new discussion has been posted in H-Asia.

    Closing of Humanities and Social Science Departments in Japanese


by Philip Brown <https://networks.h-net.org/users/philip-brown>

I pass on the following notice regarding the closing of humanities and
social sciences programs in Japanese national universities.  For further
information, please contact A.D. Smith at the address below.  This
message contains more specific details than earlier missives.

Philip Brown

*From:* Smith, Andrew <A.D.Smith at liverpool.ac.uk
<mailto:A.D.Smith at liverpool.ac.uk>>
*Date:* Monday, 21 September 2015 10:57
*Subject:* future of social sciences and humanities in Japan

Dear Fellow Academics,

Japan's current education minister is intent to closing all of the
humanities, economics, law, and social science departments in the
country's public sector universities, which include University of Tokyo,
Kyoto University, and indeed most of the other elite, research-intensive
institutions. The jobs of many of our Japanese colleagues are at stake,
since most Japanese business historians work in the affected departments.

Here is a link to the /Times Higher Education Supplement/ story about
the closure of social science and humanities departments in Japan.


The specious justification for the closure of these departments is
financial cost. There may be another agenda at work. We believe that
this petition, which is addressed to both the Minister of Education and
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe may be effective since Japan's ruling party is
divided into rival factions, not all of which shares the
anti-intellectual or ultra-nationalist views of the current Minister of

Please share this important petition with all of your contacts.


Please note that my support for this petition reflects only my views.
The petition does not represent the views of the University of Liverpool.

Many thanks,


Andrew Smith

Director of Studies, International Business

Lecturer in International Business, University of Liverpool Management

University of Liverpool Management School,  University of Liverpool

Chatham Street,  Liverpool L69 7ZH,  United Kingdom.

Office: GE13

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