John Howes Lecture Jan18


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John Howes Lecture

Monday, January 18th, 2016. 5-8pm. UBC Asian Centre, 1871 West Mall. Free Event
5PM Reception with refreshments. 6PM Lecture.

Speaker: Dr Norma Field, University of Chicago

March 11, 2016 marks the fifth anniversary of the triple disaster, the Great East Japan Earthquake that brought with it a tsunami and nuclear catastrophe. In 2013 Prime Minister Abe won the 2020 Olympics for Tokyo by declaring the spread of radioactively contaminated waters “under control,” to widespread disbelief back home. And yet, that declaration has been steadily converted into truth through the collaboration, witting and unwitting, of bureaucratic mandate and citizen need-to-forget. The process is aided and abetted by the accelerated redefinition of the character of the postwar Japanese nation.

Still, to provide a merely dystopian account would be to commit a falsehood and an injustice. Let us, rather, consider the efforts being made, with intuitive or disciplined suspension of disbelief, and in defiance of the multifarious tentacles of the late Mrs. Thatcher’s dictum, to struggle for an alternative world. Those efforts take on especially precarious, contradictory, and determined form in Fukushima, and it is to them that the heart of this talk will be dedicated.

Please note that you must register for this event!