February, 2013: Breeze Issue #64


A Free E-Newsletter for Friends of Japan & Teachers of Japanese

Greeting From The Director

We will be sending out JLPT score reports this month to everyone who took the test back in December. I’m sure most of you have already checked your scores online by now so hopefully you were able to receive a good score. And for those who did not reach your goal, I hope you will continue studying Japanese as part of your future studies and career.

In January, we organized two lecture series on Paro and the Current Conditions of Fukushima and had many people in attendance. During February, which is Academy Awards season in Los Angeles, we will invite Roland Kelts who frequently travels between New York and Tokyo to talk about Japanese Anime and Hollywood. This will be an academic lecture covering a broad range of topics including subculture, which is well received in many places. Finally, we will invite Aiko Doden, a long-time newscaster who covers international problems for the only public broadcaster in Japan NHK will talk about a range of topics from her opinions of Asia to Japan American relations. She is said to be the Japanese Barbara Walters and is a well-respected journalist. I hope you will be able to join us for our lecture series.

Misako Ito, Director

2013 JET Memorial Invitation Program (JET-MIP) Announcement

This is a reminder to all Japanese language teachers that the application period for the National Japanese Exam (NJE) will end on Friday, February 8th, 2013 at 5:00PM Eastern Time. If you plan to submit an application for the 2013 JET Memorial Invitation Program (JET-MIP), please make sure your candidate is registered to take this exam. NJE is a requirement for JET-MIP and we will not accept applications without a NJE score.

JFLA Exhibit: Hinamatsuri (Japanese Doll Festival)
February 5th through March 9th

In celebration of Hinamatsuri, also known as Japanese Doll Festival or Girls' Day, which is held on March 3, we will be displaying our Hina-ningyo (Japanese doll) set in our meeting room for the month of February and the first week of March. This custom of displaying dolls began during the Heian period (8-10th century AD) when people believed that the dolls possessed the power to contain evil spirits.

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JFLA Lecture Series 4: Anime and Hollywood
By Roland Kelts
Wednesday, February 20th, 7:00pm Start

The Japan Foundation, Los Angeles invites Roland Kelts, author of “Japanamerica: How Japanese Pop Culture Has Invaded the U.S.,” to discuss his views on Anime, its influences on Hollywood, and vice-versa. Please make sure to join us as we dwell into the colorful and eccentric world of the entertainment industry on both sides of the Pacific.

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JFLA Lecture Series 5: From Asian Voice - How to Read US-Japan Relation in 2013
By Aiko Doden
Friday, March 1st, 7pm-8:30pm
Co-organized by Los Angeles World Affairs Council & Los Angeles World Affairs Council Young Professionals

Please join us as we explore the US Japan Relationship in 2013 with Aiko Doden, senior commentator on international affairs at NHK.

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January JAPANEMA Schedule

2/13 "Eclair For Our Future, For Children"
2/6 "Setting Sail From The Ruins"
2/13 "Japan After 3.11"
2/20 "Light Up Nippon"
2/27 "Can You See Our Lights? First Festival after the Tsunami"

2012 JLPT Results

Official results for the 2012 JLPT will be sent out by the end of February. You can also view your scores online now so please visit the link below for instructions. Please note that online scores will only be available until March 15, 2013 at 5:00PM (Japan Time). Also your online JLPT account will be deleted on March 29th so you will not be able to login after that date. The next JLPT will be in December of 2013 and we will have more information in July so make sure to check back then.

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Photo Exhibition: Nippon Through My Eyes
Wednesday, January 23rd - Tuesday, March 12th
Japan Information and Culture Center (Washington, DC)

Nippon Through My Eyes: Japan as Seen by American Students is an exhibit of photographs taken by 32 American high school students during The Japan Foundation's JET Memorial Invitation Program (JET-MIP) last summer.

Chronicles of Inferno: Japan's Art Theater Guild
PFA Theatre (Berkeley, CA)
February 7 - 27, 2013

Originally created in 1961 to distribute European art films, Japan's Art Theater Guild (or ATG) began producing their own independent films in 1967, and soon unleashed a string of experimental, innovative, and highly controversial works that would challenge not only postwar Japanese society, but cinema itself. ATG captured the pulse of Japan's blistering underground movements and cultural schisms, tackling everything from queer pride to the after-effects of World War II, communist radicalism to Situationist theater, pornography to politics. "We are going to war! Smash it all!" cries a revolutionary in Koji Wakamatsu's incendiary cine-assault, Ecstasy of the Angels; ATG aimed to do just that, with film as its main weapon.

2012 JET Memorial Invitation Program Report Part 7: Return to Osaka

It had been exactly one week since we arrived in Japan and we had just completed the core part of the program by visiting the cities of Rikuzentakata and Ishinomaki where Montgomery Dickson and Taylor Anderson were assigned during their assignment as JET Assistant Language Teachers. It was a tough few days for the participants while in the Tohoku region as we witnessed the remnants of the cities destroyed by the tsunami.

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2012 JET Memorial Invitation Program: Participant Essays Part 6

This is the sixth part of an eight part series that will highlight the experiences of 32 participants of the 2012 JET Memorial Invitational Program. Through this program, participants traveled to Japan in July of 2012 for a two week study tour of the Tohoku area, focusing on the cities of Rikuzentakata and Ishinomaki. These were the cities that Montgomery Dickson and Taylor Anderson were assigned to during their tenure as JET Assistant English Teachers. Sadly, they lost their lives during the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami in March, 2011 and this program was created to commemorate their work. Participants took part in exchanges with local elementary, and high school students as well as local community members with the purpose of fostering friendship and goodwill between both countries. This month, we will be featuring the essays of the following participants:

J-LEAP Report: Part 4

For the 2012-2013, we invited 10 additional teaching assistants to various schools around the country as part of the Japanese Language Education Assistant Program (J-LEAP). We have been featuring reports from all the participants describing their experiences as teaching assistants at American high schools. This month, we will introduce the following TAs:

Sayonara Nihei

During the past seven years, Yoshihiro Nihei has been in charge of organizing Arts & Culture activities for the 13 states west of the Rocky Mountains at the Japan Foundation, Los Angeles. He will be leaving the Foundation on February 1st, returning back to Japan with his family to start a new career as an event planner. We thank him for his services to promoting cultural exchange between Japan and the United States and wish him luck in his future endeavors. An announcement will be made soon regarding Nihei's successor.