Education About Asia: Online Archives

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Feature Article

Ainu-e: Instructional Resources for the Study of Japan’s Other People

There is a commonly held misconception in the West that the people of Japan are of one culture, a perfect example of human homogeneity.1 This belief is more than an observation by Westerners: it has been the official position of the Japanese government for almost 150 years. However, there is one recently-recognized indigenous people,2 the Ainu.3 Long an enigma to all manner of disciplines, such as physical and social anthropology, linguistics, ethnology, and archaeology, the Ainu have fascina...