Nathan Hopson - CEAS Postdoctoral Associate and Lecturer
Many had never heard of Tōhoku before March 11, 2011. But in Japan, the Northeast has never been far from public consciousness. Tōhoku has been everything from a vexing internal social-political problematic to the nation’s rice basket, and from a savage and alterior outland to the spiritual home of the Japanese people. Focusing on postwar visions of Tōhoku, I will unravel the multivalence and polysemy of Tōhoku in public discourse, and what this means for regionalisms and nationalisms both in Japan and worldwide.
Nathan Hopson received his Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in 2012. His research focuses on the dynamics of postwar regionalism and substate nationalism in northeastern Japan, where he lived for eight years. He is currently working on a book project based on his dissertation, Tōhoku as Postwar Thought: Regionalism, Nationalism, and Culturalism in Japan’s Northeast. He will be teaching “Japanese Nationalism in Global Context” in the fall of 2013.