Message from the Department Chair
Prof. AIBA Keiko, Chair
In my course “Gender and Society”, the students once read and discussed an English language research paper about Japanese women politicians. In that paper by a scholar who works in the Anglophone world, the author cited a female Diet member of the Liberal Democratic Party who stated that women have a unique perspective based on their working experience as mothers and wives. She said her motivation to enter politics stemmed from the desire to bring this viewpoint into politics. When the class talked about whether they had ever heard this kind of assertion from a politician, a student from Indonesia said that in her country, women members of the People’s Consultative Assembly seek public acceptance as politicians by trying to behave like their male counterparts. Upon hearing this, I and the other students realized there are a variety of strategies for women representatives who are trying to gain access to a political sphere dominated by men.
In the GTS Department, we use English, a language spoken around the world, to understand issues that are discussed in the Anglophone world, and we gain new perspectives through our interactions with students from cultural environments outside Japan. For students who have used English in daily life, at first it is difficult to understand lectures, participate in debates, and write papers. However, many improve their academic abilities by the second half of their third year.
I look forward to working with those of you who wants to study academic fields not only in Japanese but in English (a more widely used language in global society), and who wish to use the knowledge and experience they gain from study abroad and internships to pursue their interests in the future.