10月17日(日) アート・リサーチセンター 副センター長の赤間亮教授がデジタルアーカイブ化に協力している「松竹大谷図書館」のクラウドファンディングが東京新聞に掲載されました。
今のチラシやポスターにあたる、演劇界の「芝居番付」など、約6000枚にもおよぶ資料が閲覧できるようになったことや、CFサイト「READYFOR」の寄付では、半数近くがリピーターが占め、CFを通して図書館を知る若い利用者が増えたことなどが紹介されています。［イベント情報］Explore Professor Keiji Yano's Interactive 'Surname Map' to Understand the Geographic Distribution of Surnames Across Japan ※本文は英語です2021年10月13日(水)
The Art Research Center (ARC), Ritsumeikan University, is delighted to announce the release of the 'Surname Map'--a research project led by Professor Keiji Yano (College of Letters), Deputy Director of the ARC.
Until the end of the Edo period, Japanese surnames had exclusively been granted to the emperor, nobility, and samurais. Following the Meiji Restoration and the enactment of the family registration law in the early Meiji period, farmers and other commoners also began to adopt surnames.
With more than 100,000 different surnames, Japan is not only characterized by great diversity in surnames but also regional variations in their distribution.
Based on big data of about 40 million surnames from Japanese telephone directories and large-scale residential maps, the Surname Map visualizes the contemporary spatial distribution of surnames across all prefectures in Japan.
This research began in 2005 when Professor Yano, then a visiting researcher at University College London (UCL), joined Professor Paul Longley's research project on surnames around the world at the Department of Geography, UCL.
Professor Longley had mapped surnames from the UK's 1881 Census of Individual Voters and the 1998 Electoral Roll to analyze the movement of surnames over more than a hundred years.
In the UK, a country with an ethnically diverse population, he measured ethnic residential segregation by inferring ethnic origins from surnames.
For the project of Professor Longley to create a world map of surnames, Professor Yano provided the Japanese surnames.
Features of the Surname Map
The interactive map provides users with valuable insights into the geographic distribution of their individual surnames in a simple and illustrative manner.
Firstly, the map displays the frequency of a surname in absolute numbers (人数) and ranking according to prefectures.
Secondly, the map shows the relative degree of accumulation, i.e., how evenly a surname is distributed throughout the country, with the specialization coefficient (特化係数).
An option is available to display the absolute numbers and specialization coefficient on two maps side by side.
Furthermore, the distribution trends of two surnames can be compared side by side.
Explore Regional Variations
The map enables users to explore and identify the geographic concentration and regional clusters of surnames.
For instance, the map reveals that some surnames are particularly unique to a region, such as 'Ganaha' (我那覇) in Okinawa.
In the case of Okinawa, the heavy concentration of 'Ganaha' (我那覇) has been considered a result of the relative isolation of the Ryukyu Islands that has led to minimal surname exchange with mainland Japan, whereas there are different reasons for other localities, such as government policy implications on the settlement of Hokkaido.
Current & Future Research Endeavors
Professor Yano's Surname Map builds on the growing interest in the regional analysis of surnames in Japan and other parts of the world.
As in the UK, there exists no exhaustive historical surname data for the whole country in Japan. For Kyoto, however, a database has been created as part of the Virtual Kyoto Project--another project led by Professor Yano. He is working on establishing links within this data that comprise name data from land registry maps from the end of the Meiji period (1868-1912), telephone directories, and the names of people in commerce and industry during the Taisho period (1912-1926).
Other projects include an investigation in the hometowns of the Tonden soldiers (屯田兵) and migration flows of their descendants, identifying the hometowns of Nikkei (日系人) who emigrated from Japan, as well as a study of population movements in local areas of Japan over the past fifteen years, linking them to the census data at town and village levels.
Finally, Professor Yano is pursuing the possibility of digital humanities research on surnames, including the relationship between surnames and the name of places.
The Surname Map has been created by Ritsumeikan University in cooperation with Acton Winds Co., Ltd.
1. Cheshire, James A., Paul A. Longley, Keiji Yano, and Tomoya Nakaya. "Japanese surname regions." Papers in Regional Science 93 (2014): 539-555. https://doi.org/10.1111/pirs.12002.
2. Longley, Paul. A., Alex D. Singleton, Keiji Yano, and Tomoya Nakaya. "Lost in Translation: Cross-Cultural Experiences in Teaching Geo-Genealogy." Journal of Geography in Higher Education 34, no. 1 (2010): 21-38. https://doi.org/10.1080/03098260902982476.
3. Yano, Keiji. "GIS based Japanese family name maps and their potential in Geographic Information Science." Jinmoncom (2007): 47-54. http://id.nii.ac.jp/1001/00100574/. (in Japanese with English abstract)［イベント情報］ARC-iJAC Project Spotlights: An Interview with Prof. Michael Kinski (Goethe University Frankfurt, Germany) on Edo Period Map goes Digital - The On Edo ezu as an Interactive Resource※本文は英語です2021年9月21日(火)
Professor Kinski, thank you very much for your time. As the leader of the FY2020 ARC-iJAC project 'Edo Period Map goes Digital - The On Edo ezu as an Interactive Resource', could you tell us about your motivation to start this project?
Prof. Kinski: I began to develop a strong interest in Digital Humanities (DH) in 2012 when I saw a presentation by Bettina Gramlich-Oka--a colleague at Sophia University--about creating an interactive biographic database as part of her interest in social network analysis.
Striving to incorporate text mining, topic modeling, or semantic network analysis in my approach to Edo period intellectual history, I have been making efforts to raise the interest amongst students in the approaches towards Japanese sources derived from DH.
Frankfurt University owns a small collection of printed books covering the period between 1650 and 1850, our 'Edo bunko' which we use for exercises in the classroom to decipher and transcribe larger quantities of text.
A talented student of mine, Koray Birenheide, created a program called 'DemiScript' that allows us to work with source material--whether premodern, modern, textual or visual--and to present the results of our transcription efforts. A far more advanced tool than expected, I was convinced it could serve as a platform for a larger, more ambitious classroom project.
The ARC-iJAC provided a timely opportunity to put our plan into action by drawing on the materials in the ARC databases and combining the first-hand exploration of primary sources with concerns from urban infrastructure history and art history.
So, the purpose of your project was largely educational?
Prof. Kinski: Yes, our project was not devised as a research project as such. Its paramount aim was to bring students into contact with primary source materials.
Most project participants neither had training in 'classical' Japanese, such as kobun classes (古文), nor Edo period Japanese or had encountered Edo period script and what often is called 'hentaigana'.
Furthermore, I wanted to provide students with an outline of Edo period urbanity, urban infrastructure, the representation of geography in the context of a 2D map, and the solutions chosen by the editors for this purpose.
A secondary effect of this project was the in-depth study of the On Edo ezu in a language other than Japanese and the correlation between the map and Hiroshige's ukiyo-e prints--two media available in the Tenpō period to find spatial and temporal orientation.
The students identified and linked Hiroshige's choice in scenic spots and famous places to their counterpart sites on the map. This way, we could verify the exactitude of both the map and the prints and get an idea of what kind of materials were available for Edo period inhabitants and travelers to find their way around.
How do you feel about the execution of the project, and what kind of feedback did you get from your students?
Prof. Kinski: At first, I naively thought that integrating questions and methods derived from DH would meet with a positive echo amongst students. However, despite the ubiquitous talk about living in the digital age, most of them did not immediately share my enthusiasm for DH in studying Edo Japan.
The On Edo ezu project served to overcome these reservations towards using computer-based approaches to explore Edo Japan and strengthen their intrinsic motivation to learn about Japan's past rather than contemporary Japan.
And indeed, this project turned out to provide fun, insight, and the feeling of exploration and discovery for most of my students. Organized in small groups working on a well-defined target independently, they have expressed in their end-term evaluation that this was a new and satisfying experience learning about premodern Japan.
I hope that the project has also encouraged them to find an individual creative niche for themselves and their study interests in the future.
How did you connect with the ARC-ijAC?
Prof. Kinski: My original interests lie in the Edo period intellectual and cultural history. Although my connection to Ritsumeikan University goes back to 1990, I only became fully aware of the ARC when I got invited by Andrew Gerstle (SOAS) to join his ARC-iJAC project Cultural Salons and Visual Arts in Kyoto and Osaka, 1750--1900.
This project encompassed the idea of exploring 'networks', and I was investigating Kaiho Seiryô (1755-1817) and his social network as part of this.
The project was the starting shot for what I consider a major discovery for me. Besides providing me the opportunity to explore Seiryô as a bunjin (文人) who was active in salons in Kyoto around 1810 and made the acquaintance of other bunjin painters, it also gave me a chance to see some of the works of Seiryô in private collections.
I am grateful to Ryo Akama, Andrew Gerstle as well as the ARC resources that have allowed me to pursue my interest in Seiryô as a bunjin and to set his works and endeavors in perspective.
Concluding this interview, is there anything else you would like to comment on?
Prof. Kinski: I hope that such research endeavors as pursued by the ARC and ARC-iJAC can continue in the future without the worry of financial resources. Bringing people together in international, interdisciplinary projects like this is of utmost importance.［イベント情報］2021年8月17日(火)
なお、昭和43年(1968)10月発行の『大阪府立図書館蔵 芝居番付目録』には、これ以外の番付が約2,500点掲載されており、これらについても来年度から第3弾のプロジェクトとして進める予定です。3年後には、ほぼ4,600点に達する大規模な芝居番付データベースを完成させたいと考えています。［イベント情報］2021年8月 2日(月)
主催：立命館大学アート・リサーチセンター、文部科学省 国際共同利用・共同研究拠点「日本文化資源デジタル・アーカイブ国際共同研究拠点」（ARC-iJAC）、立命館大学研究拠点形成支援プログラム続きを読む>>［イベント情報］Daan Kok氏（ライデン国立民族学博物館 東アジアコレクション学芸員）に聞く、オランダ・ライデン市の国立民族学博物館 (Museum Volkenkunde)にて、デジタル化された日本コレクション公開について ※本文は英語です2021年7月21日(水)
Dr. Kok, thank you very much for your time today. As Curator East Asia, you have been at the forefront of this joint research project with the ARC to digitize the extensive Japanese art collection of Museum Volkenkunde, part of the National Museum of World Cultures.
What sparked your interest in Japanese art and culture?
Dr. Kok: In high school, I once received a book about Japanese design. It raised my interest to apply at a design academy. Not admitted on my first attempt, I began to study Japanese and enjoyed it so much that I never stopped.
During my studies at Leiden University, I became particularly fond of the kyōka surimono of the 1820s.
How do you feel about the overall collaboration with the ARC?
Dr. Kok: I am very thankful for our collaboration. The first contact between our museum and the ARC was already established more than ten years ago. During Professor Akama's visits, we would conduct photography together using the 'portable travel kit' he developed to digitize art collections abroad.
The execution of our joint project has never been stagnant, but you can see a continuous improvement year after year. It has also been a valuable learning experience for me to see the mechanisms Professor Akama uses to increase the quality of digitizing artworks.
What is the significance of constructing and releasing this database in the ARC Virtual Institute?
Dr. Kok: We need to ensure comprehensive access for researchers to our collection.
Now that we have constructed and interlinked the ARC database with our museum database, the availability of our collection of printed materials to a Japanese-speaking audience is of great significance.
Furthermore, we appreciate the ARC's digital infrastructure for not only searching but also editing the database. The interactivity of the ARC database allows Japanese-speaking researchers to contribute to the database, paving the way for future research.
While our museum database is a more general database for a wide range of objects, the ARC database has a high level of specialization to cater to the specific needs of research in Japanese art and culture, such as ukiyo-e prints and early Japanese books.
Could you tell us a little more about the Japanese collection at Museum Volkenkunde?
Dr. Kok: The core of the museum's Japanese collection is made up of the collections of Philipp Franz von Siebold, Jan Cock Blomhoff and J.G.F. van Overmeer Fischer.
They were the main collectors in the 1820s--a period of Japan's sakoku (closed country) policy. After they purchased the artworks during their court journeys to the shōgun in Edo, the items came to the Netherlands almost in a straight line and never circulated among other collectors.
Since we know when they made these court journeys to Edo, we have obtained a good overview of what was available during that period and what was of interest to the collectors. The time of purchase also allows us to calculate how much or how little time there was between a kabuki play and the kabuki poster's availability on the market, for instance.
Furthermore, the existence of multiple copies of the same prints makes them suitable for comparative research.
Is there anything that fascinates you about this collection in particular?
Dr. Kok: It is particularly noteworthy that some of the prints are in a quite unique condition. Their colors convey the impression as if they were made just yesterday. Hence, these prints serve as a valuable reference of how prints may have looked originally.
However, due to their exceptional quality, the museum decided that a limited number would not be permitted to go on loan. Therefore, it is even more important they are available to the broad public in digital form through our database.
Could you tell us about your plans or future project goals?
Dr. Kok: I hope to continue to work with the ARC on digitization projects.
While Volkenkunde has the largest Japanese collection, there are interesting Japanese objects at other museums in our organization, mainly the Tropenmuseum (Amsterdam) and Wereldmuseum (Rotterdam), which the ARC has not digitized yet.
Since these Japan collections are not well-known, compared to that of Museum Volkenkunde, it is all the more important that they become available to a Japanese-speaking audience as well. So, we should strive to ensure that links are well established.
Furthermore, with the advance of technology, AI image recognition may provide opportunities to recognize drawings and sketches and match them to certain prints and book illustrations published by Kuniyoshi, Kyōsai, or Hokusai. I also hope to work together with the ARC on this area in the future.
Dr. Kok, thank you very much for your time. We are very much looking forward to continue working with you.
(This interview was conducted by Yinzi Emily Li.)［イベント情報］2021年7月13日(火)
1. ArcGIS Onlineによるバーチャル京都の2D・3Dマップ
In anticipation of the return of the Takayama float to the Gion Festival in 2022, a symposium was held by Asahi Shimbun, co-organized by the Art Research Center (ARC), Ritsumeikan University, on June 19, 2021.
The Takayama float boasts a long history of participating in the Yamahoko Junko parade that dates back to the 15th century. However, the float has been absent from the festival since 1826, having suffered from heavy damages caused by natural disasters.
As a result of the continued dedication and determination of the Takayama Preservation Association to revive the Takayama float, the long-cherished wish of the townspeople for the float to return to the Yamahoko Junko after nearly 200 years will finally come true.
At the beginning of the symposium, Mr. Junji Yamada, Head of the Takayama Preservation Association, gave an overview of the reconstruction progress of the float and expressed his joy that it is due to be completed four years earlier than expected.
Then, Prof. Keiji Yano, Deputy Director of the ARC, introduced the center's various activities concerning the digital archiving of the Gion Festival and the Takayama float (→ Gion Festival Digital Museum 2020 and 2021).
He presented CG animation of the rebuilt Takayama float, 2D and 3D maps of festival routes, old videos and photographs from the early Showa era, and 3D see-through visualization models of the festival floats, amongst others.
"As we did last year, the Art Research Center will be making its research results available to the public again from July this year through the Gion Festival Digital Museum 2021, so please look forward to it," expressed Prof. Yano.
Other distinguished guest speakers included Prof. Shoichi Inoue, Director of the International Research Center for Japanese Studies; Mr. Takashi Minamoto, film director and screenwriter; and Ms. Rieko Morita, Nihonga painter and Affiliate Professor at the Kyoto City University of Arts, with each of them sharing stories about his/her connection with the Gion Festival and the Takayama float.
Concluding the symposium, the hayashikata (Gion Festival musicians) of the Takayama Preservation Association performed ohayashi specific to the float.
"Ever since I was a kid, I have seen the festival floats passing by, accompanied by the creaking of wheels while I stood on the roadside listening to the ohayashi," Mr. Yamada reminisced. "None of us has ever experienced playing the ohayashi on the Takayama float during the festival, so we are all more than excited."
*A full video of the event is available online from July 1 - August 31, 2021 (in Japanese). To watch the video, please register via the following link: https://ciy.digital.asahi.com/ciy/11004163.［イベント情報］2021年6月25日(金)
Professor Akama, thank you very much for your time today. You have just completed Phase 1 of the kuzushiji training course for beginners and intermediate levels. What is the purpose of your training course?
Prof. Akama: We have developed an AI-enabled transcription support system for kuzushiji specifically for educational purposes as part of an industry-academia collaboration with Toppan Printing Co., Ltd. The company kindly provided us with the API (application programming interface) of their kuzushiji recognition system that is powered by deep learning.
Our purpose is to teach and support students and researchers in utilizing our transcription support system for their academic research projects based on the abundant materials available in the ARC's Early Japanese Books Portal Database. You can freely choose the materials you wish to transcribe from our database--with over 218,000 titles, one of the largest databases of digital-archived early Japanese books in the world.
I have held several workshops on the system, for instance, at the University of Leiden and the University of California, Berkeley. Not able to travel due to the pandemic, I hope to promote the system's usage by offering this online training course.
Could you tell us about the significance of developing a transcription support system?
Prof. Akama: The Edo Period was peaceful and culturally mature--an ideal environment for commercial publishing and the distribution of woodblock-printed books to flourish as the literacy rate among the population was reasonably high.
Hence, books from a variety of genres written in kuzushiji were published during this time containing valuable information about art, culture, history, and more. However, only a fraction of them has been transcribed.
The transcription support system facilitates access to these books for students, researchers, and people in the fields related to Japanese arts and culture, to obtain a deeper understanding of the past as we strive to preserve cultural heritage.
What is the merit of the ARC Transcription Support System as compared with other transcription systems for kuzushiji?
Prof. Akama: The merit of our transcription support system lies in its educational function.
Our interactive system enables students to learn and practice transcribing and archiving digital texts of early Japanese books fast and efficiently.
It is particularly suited for being used in lectures and study groups under the supervision of an instructor or as part of individual or group research projects.
As the system offers a user-friendly interface with a vertical input window for transcriptions next to the original kuzushiji text, users can easily compare and check the contents as they proceed.
Should users encounter difficulties, the AI-enabled deciphering support function gives a list of suggestions ranked by percentage. If there is no suitable suggestion based on the context, users can search in our extensive Character Image Database or request support from the instructor.
Hence, users can gradually enhance their ability to read kuzushiji with clues provided by the system and the feedback given by instructors.
Could you tell us about your plans for the future regarding this system?
Prof. Akama: As we continue to utilize the system to advance the projects under our ARC-iJAC umbrella, we also warmly encourage international researchers, both individuals and groups, to →contact us should you be interested in using the system for your research or teaching.
Our system is a powerful tool to accelerate digital humanities research of Japanese art and culture, so I hope to expand its usage in lectures, study- and project groups in Japan and overseas.
Prof. Akama, thank you very much for your time today.
(This interview was conducted by Yinzi Emily Li.)