International Conference 2017

Sunday, 25 June 2017

Profiling Ainu Keynote Speakers No.2

Ms. Shizue Ukaji is a legend in her own time. In 1973, she organised and led the Tokyo Ainu Association for the human rights of the Ainu in Tokyo. At the age of 63, she started learning Ainu embroidery. Her pieces are marked by using Ainu Yukar (epics) for the expression of her image in a combined manner of Ainu embroidery and Japanese clothes. She is now well-known as an embroiderer and a writer of picture books in addition to the liberation campaigner. However, her enthusiasm against external powers' suppression of Indigenous peoples does not deteriorate yet. In February 2017, she protested with her allies about Japanese mega banks' investing a huge amount of money in the building of the Dakota Pipeline. Additionally, she is one of the special advisers to the Citizens' Alliance for the Examination of Ainu Policy, which Hiroshi Maruyama, principal organiser of the International Conference on Policy towards Indigenous Peoples in Sapporo, organised with professor Kunihiko Yoshida at Hokkaido University.

Friday, 23 June 2017

Profiling Ainu Keynote Speakers No.1

Mr. Shiro Kayano is the son of the late Dr. Shigeru Kayano who symbolises linguistic and cultural revitalisation of the Ainu. Shiro has succeeded to his father's will to pass on  their language and culture to future generations. He devotes himself to the management of the Ainu Language Times (twice a year), the Mini FM Broadcast Pipaushi (once a month), the Nibutani Ainu Language School, Kayano Shigeru Nibutani Ainu Museum, etc. In order to maintain and develop the Ainu language, he claims that the Ainu language should be part of the curriculum in school and recognised as an official language in Japan in particular in Hokkaido. Is there any person but him who can talk on the revitalisation of the Ainu language at the International Conference on Policy towards Indigenous Peoples in Sapporo? Additionally, he is among signatories who endorsed the aim of the Citizens' Alliance for the Examination of Ainu Policy, which Hiroshi Maruyama, principal organiser of the International Conference on Policy towards Indigenous Peoples in Sapporo, organised with professor Kunihiko Yoshida at Hokkaido University.  

Wednesday, 21 June 2017

Ainu Women's Association has started up for practicalities

On 20 June, Ryoko Tahara, representative of the Ainu Women's Association (AWA), had a meeting with two board members of the AWA in preparation for the Indigenous Art and Academic Event in Sapporo. The topic of the meeting focused on the establishment of a steering committee, which takes responsibility for practicalities, including fundraising, interpretation, publication of the programme and the abstract book, filming the event, registration card, venue, reception, refreshment, and banquet. They are very much looking forward to hosting the event in cooperation with the Northern Institute of Environmental and Minority Law at the University of Lapland, the Hugo Valentin Centre at Uppsala University, and the Centre for Environmental and Minority Policy Studies (CEMiPoS) in November and December 2017 in Sapporo.

Friday, 2 June 2017

We are making a draft programme

We, organising members are making a draft programme of the workshop/art exhibition and conference. Fortunately, renowned Indigenous artists and leading Ainu and Sami activists in addition to important Indigenous and non-Indigenous researchers are likely to come to Sapporo. Our concern is not how to get many participants, but how to provide participants with a comfortable platform to collaborate with each other for move Indigenous policy forward.

The day before yesterday, I saw Sameblod (Sami Blood) in a theatre in Uppsala which is remarkably run by volunteers. Amanda Kernell, the director of the movie, focuses on utterly ordinary Sami girls, not a historic heroine or hero. Amanda shows us through their lives historical injustices imposed on Sami people no one can deny, for instance, measuring bodies of Sami people by racial biologists in Uppsala, banning Sami people from speaking their own language in school, providing poor education for them by the authorities, and so on. The audience is supposed to feel empathy with the leading actress.

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

A new poster has come

A revision of the poster of our art and academic event has come. It looks more simple and beautiful than the former. Thank you, Tomas Colbengtson, for your immediate response to my request as usual.

Saturday, 13 May 2017

Looking for subscriptions and interpreters

On 14 May, the Hokkaido Shimbun Press reported the following article: first, we, the organising committee of the International Conference on Policy towards Indigenous Peoples, have received so far more abstracts than expected from 11 countries; second, the number of international participants in the two-day Indigenous workshop/art exhibition and the three-day academic conference is likely to reach 70; third, we are looking for subscriptions and interpreters to manage those art and academic events in Sapporo. 

Friday, 12 May 2017

A fifth key area added!

This conference aims to assess the existing policies towards Indigenous peoples at local, regional, and global levels based on scientific findings by focusing on the following key areas:

1. Redress for historical injustices imposed on Indigenous peoples and their struggle for Indigenous rights
2. Exploitation of natural resources by external powers in Indigenous communities and their resistance against them
3. Linguistic and cultural revitalisation led by Indigenous peoples in the wake of cultural genocide under colonialism
4. Indigenous women on the front line of sufferings and struggles.
5. Indigenous health issues