[S2E25] 😸 Pets & Animal Cafés with Brittany Rapone

Oliver is joined by Brittany Rapone, PhD candidate at the School of Social Sciences at Oxford Brookes University, to discuss attitudes towards pets and animal cafes in Japan. Brittany walks us through the cultural commonality of human-animal relationships and the “rent-a-pet” model of animal cafes in Japan, providing the iyashi, or “comfort”, of animal interaction at an hourly rate.

[S2E24] 💀 Public Opinion on Capital Punishment with Dr Viviana Andreescu

Oliver is joined by Viviana Andreescu, Associate Professor of Justice Administration at the University of Louisville, to discuss public opinion on capital punishment in Japan. Viviana’s 2020 article, ‘Public opinion and the death penalty in Japan’, took a look at over 2,500 responses of the Japanese General Social Survey to gauge who supports the death penalty and who would recommend it as a member of the relatively new Citizen Judge System.

[S2E20] ⛩️ Global Shinto with Kaitlyn Ugoretz

This week we are joined by Kaitlyn Ugoretz, anthropologist of religion and a PhD candidate in the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultural Studies at UC Santa Barbara, to discuss the global appeal of Shinto in the digital era. Kaitlyn introduces us to online Shinto communities as old as the internet itself, as well as the many international faces of Shinto, from official shrines in the USA to localised rituals and Marie Kondo’s brand of spiritualism.

[S2E14] 👩‍👦 Nostalgia & Motherhood with Dr Forum Mithani

This week we are joined by Dr Forum Mithani, British Academy Post-doctoral Fellow at the School of Modern Languages at Cardiff University, to discuss her research on the role of nostalgia in shaping expectations of motherhood.

[S2E7] 👘 Dorozome Textiles: Traditional Crafts Today with Dr Charlotte Linton

This week we are joined by Dr Charlotte Linton, Robert & Lisa Sainsbury Research Fellow at the Sainsbury Institute, to discuss dorozome (泥染め) textiles and traditional crafts today.

[S2E5] 🙇‍♂️ Ritualising Scandal with Dr Igor Prusa

This week we are joined by Dr Igor Prusa, lecturer in Media Studies at the Metropolitan University Prague, who will discuss “Ritualising Scandal”. Igor takes us through the surprisingly structured social phenomenon of scandal in Japan, the necessity for tears in a televised confession, and how those who confess can actually come out better for it.

[S2E4] 📸 Contents Tourism with Dr Philip Seaton

This week we are joined by Dr Philip Seaton, professor in the Institute of Japan Studies at Tokyo University of Foreign Studies, to discuss “Contents Tourism”, travel behaviour motivated by narratives, characters and locations from pop culture.

[S1E45] 👥 The Ainu in Japan with Amanda McGuire

This week Oliver is joined by Amanda McGuire, PhD candidate at the University of East Anglia, to discuss the Ainu in Japan, exploring their historical and contemporary relationship with the peoples of mainland Japan and what the withdrawal of the Ainu dance from the Tokyo 2020 Olympics Opening Ceremony says about the theme of “unity in Japan”.