Accepted Paper:

The formation of satoyama: towards restructuring rural societies in Japan  
Megumi Doshita (Tama University)

Paper long abstract:

In Japan, rural societies have suffered from depopulation and the recession in agriculture and forestry which were an indirect result of the dynamic change of world order. These problems have led to the destruction of cultivated land, and as a result, the ideal image of rural settings, satoyama, has been abstractly developed through nationwide environmental discussions. An analysis of newspaper articles since the 1980s reveals that the term satoyama has changed from a natural setting surrounding villages to the whole set of rural environments. This has resulted in a re-valuing of rural settings and the eclipsing of problems which cannot be solved within the local context. The evaluations of national government policies and of tourism practices in Miyama, Kyoto, show that satoyama has been utilised nationally as a tourism resource in order to restructure and revitalise rural societies and that local people are tackling their problems by promoting satoyama.

Panel W061
East Asian imaginings: (trans)national scenarios and global crisis