Accepted Paper:

The Ainu people and museum, new relationship with cultural anthropology  


Koji Yamasaki (Hokkaido University)

Paper short abstract:

In this paper, I pay my attention to the phenomenon at the museum and discuss about the Ainu people and their culture.

Paper long abstract:

In 2007, the United Nations General Assembly adopted "The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples". Correspondingly, both the House of Representatives and the House of Councilors unanimously adopted the "Resolution to Recognize the Ainu as an Indigenous People" on 6th of June, 2008. In response to these new developments, the Chief Cabinet Secretary formed "The Advisory Council for Future Ainu Policy". In July 2009, the Advisory Council submitted its Final Report. Based on the Final Report, the "Council for Ainu Policy Promotion" was set up. Now, the Council is working on the realization of comprehensive recommendations by the former Advisory Council, which identified policy priorities in Japan with reference to the UN Declaration.

Currently, indigenous people of the world are taking the initiative to revive their traditional cultures, and it seems the movements are picking up steam. The Ainu people are no exception.In an event there, a parallel phenomenon is observed worldwide. One of the examples of such an attempt is the project to make replicas of the old artifacts owned by museums. This activity is now looked upon as a helpful procedure to regain what has been lost and integrate the traditional skills of ancestors into contemporary works. Moreover, the activity makes the new cultural resources.

In future, the relations with indigenous people and the museum will be deepened. In this paper, I report the possibility of cultural anthropological renewals by practice and struggle at the museum.

Panel P026
Indigenous futures and anthropological renewals