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No.2 (2013/3) >

Title :【《UH・UR合同シシポジウム》報告】Storied Islands : Imagined Indigeneity as a Strategy for Transforming the Okinawan Community
Authors :Kina, Ikue
Authors alternative :喜納, 育江
Issue Date :29-Mar-2013
Abstract :While there has been postcolonial discussion of the problem of the colonialist gaze objectifying "Okinawa," the notion of an "Okinawan community" has not yet been fully elaborated. This is partly because the process of imagining "Okinawa" has emphasized the communal struggles against the external colonizing powers more than the internal dilemma caused by diversifying forms of values and beliefs, which often frustrates people's communication with each other. In the historical process of mobilization and acculturation, the question of who comprises the Okinawan community has been coupled with the question of indigeneity and colonialism; however, the Okinawan community has actually never been monolithic, consisting of both Okinawan and non-Okinawan residents, and Okinawa has always been a site where diverse values and ideologies have contact, collide, and compromise with each other. The complexity of the Okinawan community also results in people's declining ability to share indigenous memories. Failure to be attentive to indigenous memories at the same time means a decline in the sense of place, a sense indispensable for knowing who you are culturally and where you are located in terms of history as well as in relation to other beings both human and non-human. It is a crucial sense that makes one aware of others with whom s/he shares a place in everyday life, in other words, aware of his/her community. My contention in this paper is that imagining the "Okinawan community" requires a desire for caring, a sense of responsibility and commitment for the continuation not only of the people but also of the place that has been nurturing their lives and in return is nurtured by their memories. For storytellers and writers, including novelists and poets, who transform the memories of place into stories, a challenge they face today is to tell stories on and of the islands in a way that can communicate with listeners with different linguistic, cultural, and historical backgrounds. In this paper, I shall examine how storytellers could make a pivotal contribution to proposing a community for Okinawa to continue in the future and, in doing so, how imagining indigeneity and gender experience plays a key role in recuperating or renovating communal consciousness toward inclusion rather than exclusion. I shall discuss these by taking examples from Tami Sakiyama's "Kuja Stories," interpreting how she demonstrates her sense of community and indigeneity in creating her stories and characters located in Kuja, a fictional and marginalized space where people who share "otherness" converge and comprise a community.
Type Local :紀要論文
ISSN :2186-7933
Publisher :琉球大学国際沖縄研究所
URI :http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.12000/30055
Citation :国際琉球沖縄論集 = International Review of Ryukyuan and Okinawan Studies no.2 p.77 -84
Appears in Collections:No.2 (2013/3)

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