Welcome to Sonic Japan Digital Repository


    Summary of project

    This study will investigate how people negotiate their relationships to sound in densely populated metropolises (primarily Tokyo and Kyoto). We will examine sound’s pivotal role in mediating relationships between public and private spheres in Japan. This anthropological research focuses on ‘sonic practice,’ a way of understanding the situated, embodied means by which sound is made significant, in places such as train stations, factories, concert halls, sports clubs, and therapeutic sessions.

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     Creative Commons License

    Sonic Japan Digital Repository by the Sonic Japan Digital Repository team is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.
    Based on a work at artsonline.monash.edu.au/sonicjapan/.
    Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at http://artsonline.monash.edu.au/sonicjapan/contact-us/.

    Please feel free to cite material from this Digital Repository in your writing. A suggested citation format is:

    [Author/Recorder (each page has credits at the bottom of each post)]. 2014. [Title / Recording]. Available online at http://artsonline.monash.edu.au/sonicjapan/………. Last Updated [date is at top of the post]. Date accessed [  /  /  /].


Latest News & Articles

  •   Forming part of the UNESCO world heritage site “Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto (Kyoto, Uji and Otsu Cities),” Ryoan-ji Temple in Western Kyoto is particularly famous for its Zen gardens. Indeed Nitschke (1999: 88-9) argues that the karesansui (dry landscape) rock garden at Ryoan-ji temple, which is pictured above, represents the finest extant example of Read more
  • Since the early 20th Century, school lunches (known as kyuushoku) have become a daily tradition in Japanese elementary and junior high schools. They usually consist of a bread roll, a carton or bottle of milk and an inexpensive dish containing protein (such as a fried fish) and increasingly, since the 1980s, rice, soup and popular dishes such Read more
  • Hombu dojo, the world headquarters of the Aikikai Foundation, is located on a back street in Shinjuku-ku.  The dojo was first established at that site in 1931 by the Founder of aikido, Morihei Ueshiba, and the structure was modernised and extended over the years to the present five-story building with three training spaces. At the Read more
  • At 2:56 pm on 11 March, 2011, Japan’s northeastern coastline experienced a magnitude 9 earthquake, accompanied by a tsunami that hit a 500 kilometre stretch of the coast, and caused meltdowns and hydrogen explosions at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. As of March 2014, the disasters had claimed 15,884 lives, with 6,148 injured and 2,633 Read more
  • Tsukiji is often called ‘Tokyo’s Pantry‘. Located only blocks from Tokyo’s glittering Ginza, Tsukiji—the world’s largest marketplace for seafood—is a prominent landmark, well known but little understood by most Tokyoites: a supplier for countless fishmongers and sushi chefs, and a popular and fascinating destination for foreign tourists. Early every morning, the worlds of hi-tech and Read more
  • Soba (buckwheat) noodles are a popular dish in Japan. Served either hot or cold, soba noodles are made from buckwheat and are typically eaten with a broth. Sometimes they are served with pickles (tsukemono). Part of the enjoyment of eating soba noodles (indeed, any noodles in Japan) is sensory: feeling the noodles slip through your Read more
  • The following sounds were recorded during an evening protest in front of the Government offices in Kasumigaseki and  Nagatacho in central Tokyo.I began my sensory experience at the Anti Nuke Occupy Tent, which was located near exit A12 of the Kasumigaseki Station.  There, in front of the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (keizai sangyō-shō: 経済産業省 Read more
  • The music industry in Japan, as elsewhere, is seen to be a troubled industry. Since the late 1990s, sales figures of CDs in Japan have been in steady decline, in part due to the rise of online music as the primary source for consumers. Another reason was the redirection of dispensable incomes into other youth Read more
  • Ochanomizu is an area in central Tokyo that is located near several major universities:  Meiji University, Tokyo Medical and Dental University and Juntendo University (Ochanomizu University moved to another part of the city after the 1923 Kanto Earthquake. Tokyo University’s Hongo Campus is a short distance away). The retailers in this area cater in part to Read more
  • Ginza has long been home to Japan’s largest department stores and “brand” fashion boutiques. Strolling along the wide boulevards (the first western style boulevards in Tokyo), a practice known as gin-bura, has long been a custom amongst young couples. “Ginza” is understood as a trendy and fashionable space and the term Ginza has become affixed to Read more