Course title
M30250001
Science and Religion in Japan

yoshikubo hatsuko
Course description
This course introduces some lesser-known aspects of Japanese history, “Science and Religion in Japan.” The quest for natural science to understand the design and principles of the universe was a major reason behind the advance of science in the West. But Japan had a different story. Science was brought over to Japan by European Christians.

In the class, we do not focus on religion vs science debate, but on historical facts. Both illustrated and written reference materials are used to deepen students' interest and understanding.
Purpose of class
In modern society we sometimes hear debates between science and religion, but in Japanese history, western religion and western science arrived at the same time. This course is designed to help students understand the impact of this arrival on Japanese concepts of religion and science and lasting influence on modern Japanese society.

The 16th century was a turning point in Japanese history because the country was unified under the stern rule of two dictators, Oda Nobunaga and Toyotomi Hideyoshi, who ended the long civil wars among 300 feudal lords. Thus pacified Japan soon established contacts with Western civilization as transmitted by Portuguese traders and Catholic missionaries. Consequently, Japan acquired the technology, science, art, and crafts of the West and this interest extended to Christianity.

However, the process of modernization was interrupted when Hideyoshi prohibited Christianity. In this course, we explore the process of transformation that religious tradition including Shinto, Buddhists, and Christianity went through in Japanese society, education, and science.
Goals and objectives

Goals and objectives Course Outcomes
1. Students will familiarize themselves with the knowledge of the characteristics of some religious traditions in Japan, and how they were transformed in the modern period in the context of their encounter with the West.
B
,
E
2. Students will also acquire some understanding of the effect of religions on society, education and science.
B
,
C
,
E
3. Students will also learn to analyze the issue between science and culture from the perspective of the transcultural theory.
B
,
E
4. Students will learn the importance of sharing their own ideas with others and speaking to third parties and outsiders from our social groups which gives us a fresh perspective on the subject.
B
,
E
Language
English
Class schedule

Class schedule HW assignments (Including preparation and review of the class.) Amount of Time Required
1. Introduction
1. Introduction to the syllabus, grading, and class rules.
2. What does understanding different cultures mean to you? Write about this in the class.
3. What is your definition of “science”?
4. Japanese encounters and relationships with foreign languages and cultures.
What kind of foreign language can you learn at university in your country? What are the most popular languages for college students? Write a short response paper on this by using statistics and showing the ranking of popular second foreign languages in your country by our second class and share it with your fellow peers. 170分
2. The first period of Japan’s new encounter with foreign cultures
1. A brief report by students
2. Our relationship with foreign languages
3. What language do you think has the longest history of Japanese people’s relationship with foreign languages, and has occupied a major position in Japanese culture?
4. Shinto and Buddhism
5. Japanese language system: Kanji, Hiragana, and Katakana
How would you describe your language system to someone who doesn’t speak it? Write a short response paper on this. 180分
3. The second period of Japan’s new encounter with foreign languages
1. A brief report by students
2. Arrival of the Portuguese trade ship
3. Arrival of the Spanish Jesuit, Francisco Xavier
4. Arrival of the Netherland trade ship
Write a short response paper based on the pictures which will be shown in the class PPT. 180分
4. Christianity booms in Japan
1. Brief reports by students
2. Christian Daimyo
3. Nobunaga
4. Hideyoshi
5. Ieyasu
Write a short response paper based on the pictures which will be shown in the class PPT. 180分
5. Christian influence: Part 1
1. Brief reports by students
2. Tenshō embassy
3. World's leading printing business in Amakusa
4. Orasho (oratio)
Write a short response paper on the pictures which will be shown in the class PPT. 180分
6. Christian influence: Part 2
1. Brief reports by students
2. The spirituality of tea ceremony
3. Tea masters and Missionaries
Write a short response paper based on the pictures which will be shown in the class PPT. 180分
7. Sakoku (Closed country)
1. Brief reports by students
2. Fearing domination by the Catholic countries, Christianity was banned.
3. Portuguese traders were replaced by the Dutch
Get ready for your mid-term presentation. Make a poster presentation based on what you have learnt in the first part of the term. 220分
8. Mid-term presentations and discussion Write your own evaluation of your presentation. Did you get your point across? Was your introduction catchy? Was your conclusion strong? Evaluate your own experience. How can you improve your presentation? Write down everything you can think of to improve your presentation and your plans. 220分
9. Hidden Christianity in Japan
1. Brief reports by students
2. Unknown Story of the Arrival of Christianity
3. World Heritage Site of Hidden Christians
Write a short response paper based on the pictures which will be shown in the class PPT. 180分
10. Hidden Christianity in Japan (Ctd.)
1. Brief reports by students
2. Unknown Story of the Arrival of Christianity
3. World Heritage Site of Hidden Christians
Write a short response paper based on the pictures which will be shown in the class PPT. 180分
11. The third period of Japan’s new encounter with foreign languages
1. Brief reports by students
2. Arrival of Black Ships
3. How was the news of Perry's fleet arriving in Uraga conveyed to the common people of Edo?
What kind of social media did people in the past in your country have? Write a short response paper on this. 180分
12. Kawaraban: a study of social media in the Edo period
1. Brief reports by students
2. Kawarabab as a social media in Edo period
3. Yomiuri – Kawaraban vendors
4. What were the biggest selling of Kawaraban throughout the Edo period?
Write a short response paper on the pictures which will be shown in the class PPT. 200分
13. Reading facts through Kawaraban and Ukiyoe
1. Brief reports by students
2. Reading facts through Kawaraban: Black shops vs Tokugawa Shogunade
3. Reading facts through Ukiyoe: Science and technology in Edo era
Get ready for your final presentation. Make a poster presentation. Summarize what you have learned from this course. 200分
14. Final presentation and discussions Write your own evaluation of your final presentation. Did you get your point across? Was your introduction catchy? Was your conclusion strong? Evaluate your own experience in this course. 200分
Total. - - 2650分
Relationship between 'Goals and Objectives' and 'Course Outcomes'

Participation in class-activities and the reaction paper Mid-term etc. Final Total.
1. 5% 10% 15% 30%
2. 5% 5% 10% 20%
3. 5% 5% 10% 20%
4. 5% 10% 15% 30%
Total. 20% 30% 50% -
Evaluation method and criteria
Grades are given based on:
1.Participation in class-activities and the assignments (20%)
2.Mid-term etc.(30%)
3.Final (50%)
Textbooks and reference materials
References are introduced in the class.
Prerequisites
Students are required to give a poster presentation for both the mid-term and the final. They should be argumentative, written academically, and complete with bibliography.
Office hours and How to contact professors for questions
  • Office hours: Monday and Friday, 16:00-18:00 in the lecturer's office & by appointment
  • Contact e-mail address: zam08580@shibaura-it.ac.jp
Regionally-oriented
Regionally-oriented course
Development of social and professional independence
  • Course that cultivates an ability for utilizing knowledge
Active-learning course
Most classes are interactive
Course by professor with work experience
Work experience Work experience and relevance to the course content if applicable
N/A N/A
Education related SDGs:the Sustainable Development Goals
  • 10.REDUCED INEQUALITIES
  • 16.PEACE, JUSTICE AND STRONG INSTITUTIONS
  • 17.PARTNERSHIPS FOR THE GOALS
Last modified : Wed Mar 24 04:10:52 JST 2021