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  2. C02 Humans-Things (Cultural Anthropology)

Research subject

Anthropological Study on the Generation and Transformation of the Lifelong Relationships between Humans and Things

Research outline

This research group focuses on the things used and worn to alleviate physical and cognitive disabilities and to respond to physiological changes and social roles due to sex-related differences in various societies in Japan and the Oceania. In addition, we aim to clarify 1) the process through which they are introduced into the society and fit in each individual’s body, 2) changes in usage and behavior of the people wearing them, and 3) the social evaluation about leading a life while wearing and using them through continuous participant observation, mainly behavior observation and interviews. By focusing on the relationship with things in response to each physical and life condition such as disability and sex-related difference, in addition to reinquiring a unitary developmental model from growth to deterioration, we intend to search for the key to a new view of life based on society case examples. (C02 Principal investigator: Makoto Kurata)


  • Principal investigator:
    • Makoto Kurata, Professor, School of Medicine, Tokyo Medical University
  • Co-investigator:
    • Kazuhiro Kazama, Professor, Graduate School of Human and Environmental Studies, Kyoto University
    • Manami Yasui, Professor, International Research Center for Japanese Studies
    • Mariko Shinmoto, Visiting Researcher, Hiroshima City University
    • Akari Konya, Lecturer, Faculty of International Studies, Meiji Gakuin University
    • Kenta Yamamoto, Assistant Professor, Graduate School of Human Development and Environment, Kobe University
    • Fumiya Sano, Research Fellow, (NIHU) Center for Innovative Research / Visiting Reseracher, Graduate School of Asian and African Area Studies, Kyoto University
    • Hidenori Samoto, Assistant professor, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Tsukuba
    • Shuji Iijima, Associate Professor, Faculty of Human-Enviroment Studies, Kyushu University
    • Masaya Shijo, Lecturer, College of Intercultural Studies, Kanto Gakuin University
  • Collaborator:
    • Makiko Kuwahara, Professor, Faculty of Arts, Kinjo Gakuin University
    • Kazuya Oomuro, Representative of Saga Office, AAR Japan (Association for Aid and Relief, Japan)
    • Hiroki Yoshida, Professor, College of Intercultural Studies, Kanto Gakuin University
    • Hideshi Okada, Representative chairperson, Specified Nonprofit Corporation Room of Self-help devices
    • Takashi Watanabe, Professor, College of Health Sciences, Nihon Fukushi University
    • Soichiro Shimizu, Chief professor, School of Medicine, Tokyo Medical University