Sample_paper_on_Tea_Ritual

Sample_paper_on_Tea_Ritual - Japanese Tea Ritual, Dynamic...

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Japanese Tea Ritual, Dynamic Mythology, and National Identity Jennifer L. Anderson San José State University Submitted to Asian Anthropology January 2006 1
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Japanese Tea Ritual, Dynamic Mythology, and National Identity I. Introduction In 1984, then Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone posed for photographs while performing Japanese tea ritual on Election Day (Kelly 1984:64). In 2002, officials at Japan’s National Space Development Agency announced a plan to include a tea room in their section of the International Space Station (Murphy 2002). Clearly, even when confronted with the most dramatic restrictions on time and space, the Japanese will feature tea ritual when they want to make a symbolic statement about what is most important to them as a nation. In this paper, I would like to emphasize the way in which tea ritual is conveyed and creatively manipulated in a manner that helps engender a sense of national identity. While, to the outsider, it appears that tea practitioners emphasize the preservation of a static tradition, experienced insiders realize that chad ō ( 茶道 ) or the “Way of Tea” is constantly changing. 1 Since chad ō is often presented as the quintessential manifestation of Japanese culture, viewing tea ritual as an instrument for communicating images of Japanese national identity may further our understanding of the
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This note was uploaded on 09/08/2010 for the course ANTH 25 at San Jose State University .

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Sample_paper_on_Tea_Ritual - Japanese Tea Ritual, Dynamic...

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