Carleton Linguistics in Kyoto

This is the blog of the Carleton Linguistics in Kyoto off-campus seminar, located at Doshisha University in Kyoto, Japan. The seminar will be in session from late March to early June, 2012.
We’ve now (April 8) been in Kyoto for about a week and a half. Classes are underway, and the students are settling into the dorm near the Doshisha campus. I’ve been spectacularly busy these days, but I promise to try to take more pictures for this blog in the future. 
Today, spring finally arrived in Kyoto, a little late. The cherry blossoms are out, and the city feels very festive. We had a opening banquet last Wednesday, featuring a number of important guests. We were welcomed by a vice-president of the University, and the director of the International Center. The main business of the dinner was for our students to meet the Doshisha Peers, the 24 Doshisha University students we have selected to be a part of our program. I was too busy at the banquet to take pictures, but I think lots of other people did and I will post them here as soon as they send them to me. 

We’ve now (April 8) been in Kyoto for about a week and a half. Classes are underway, and the students are settling into the dorm near the Doshisha campus. I’ve been spectacularly busy these days, but I promise to try to take more pictures for this blog in the future. 

Today, spring finally arrived in Kyoto, a little late. The cherry blossoms are out, and the city feels very festive. We had a opening banquet last Wednesday, featuring a number of important guests. We were welcomed by a vice-president of the University, and the director of the International Center. The main business of the dinner was for our students to meet the Doshisha Peers, the 24 Doshisha University students we have selected to be a part of our program. I was too busy at the banquet to take pictures, but I think lots of other people did and I will post them here as soon as they send them to me. 

Before we left Tokyo for Kyoto, we had a banquet at a restaurant with the orientation faculty, plus Abe-sensei from Kyoritsu Women’s University and a few of her students. When we return to Tokyo in May, we will meet Abe-sensei’s students and they will accompany us (in small groups of Carleton and Kyoritsu students) to the famous Yasukuni Shrine and the adjacent war museum. 
Pictured here are Aly Wisekal, Lisa Taxier, Charlie Bentley, Jojo Schmidt in back. In front we have Kyung Soo Liu, Kelsey Klug, two Kyoritsu students, and Bill Vang. 
Anna Callahan. Matt Rathkey, Will Johnston and  Lauren Chow were also at the banquet but I didn’t get a picture of them. 

Before we left Tokyo for Kyoto, we had a banquet at a restaurant with the orientation faculty, plus Abe-sensei from Kyoritsu Women’s University and a few of her students. When we return to Tokyo in May, we will meet Abe-sensei’s students and they will accompany us (in small groups of Carleton and Kyoritsu students) to the famous Yasukuni Shrine and the adjacent war museum. 

Pictured here are Aly Wisekal, Lisa Taxier, Charlie Bentley, Jojo Schmidt in back. In front we have Kyung Soo Liu, Kelsey Klug, two Kyoritsu students, and Bill Vang. 

Anna Callahan. Matt Rathkey, Will Johnston and  Lauren Chow were also at the banquet but I didn’t get a picture of them. 

Back row: Deborah Shapiro, Emily Manahan, Matt Zekowski, Jillian Mattern, Iwanaga-sensei.
Front row: Two students from Abe-sensei’s class, Marika Xydes, Andrew Peters, Evan Leibowitz.

Back row: Deborah Shapiro, Emily Manahan, Matt Zekowski, Jillian Mattern, Iwanaga-sensei.

Front row: Two students from Abe-sensei’s class, Marika Xydes, Andrew Peters, Evan Leibowitz.

Aly Wisekal almost did not make it to the orientation banquet, because she badly twisted her ankle on the way to the restaurant. But thanks to some quick thinking by Jojo Schmidt, Sakai-sensei, Lisa Taxier, Marika Xydes, and Shirasaka-sensei, we are able to procure a cold pack and wrap, and we were also able to commandeer a wheel chair. No problem getting Aly to the dinner, especially with Tokyo’s legendary taxis. 

Aly Wisekal almost did not make it to the orientation banquet, because she badly twisted her ankle on the way to the restaurant. But thanks to some quick thinking by Jojo Schmidt, Sakai-sensei, Lisa Taxier, Marika Xydes, and Shirasaka-sensei, we are able to procure a cold pack and wrap, and we were also able to commandeer a wheel chair. No problem getting Aly to the dinner, especially with Tokyo’s legendary taxis. 

Anna Callahan, Aly Wisekal, Lisa Taxier, Charlie Bentley, and Andrew Peters in front of casks of sake donated to the Meiji Jingu Shrine.

Anna Callahan, Aly Wisekal, Lisa Taxier, Charlie Bentley, and Andrew Peters in front of casks of sake donated to the Meiji Jingu Shrine.

Finally, after two and a half years of planning and negotiations, the Carleton Linguistics in Kyoto off-campus studies seminar began on March 26, 2012. We’re now at our three-day orientation program in Tokyo. On our first outing as a group, we visited the Meiji Shrine, a beautiful Shinto shrine surrounded by a large, wonderful park. Here we are near the entrance. 

Finally, after two and a half years of planning and negotiations, the Carleton Linguistics in Kyoto off-campus studies seminar began on March 26, 2012. We’re now at our three-day orientation program in Tokyo. On our first outing as a group, we visited the Meiji Shrine, a beautiful Shinto shrine surrounded by a large, wonderful park. Here we are near the entrance. 

Evan Leibowitz, Kelsey Klug, and Anna Callahan ritually cleansing themselves before entering the Meiji Shrine. 

Evan Leibowitz, Kelsey Klug, and Anna Callahan ritually cleansing themselves before entering the Meiji Shrine. 

My work here, for now, is done. I’ve finished my classes at Doshisha, and the grades are in. I’ve said my good-bye’s to my friends.
The Carleton Linguistics in Kyoto Off-Campus Studies Seminar is ready. We have good accommodations, both here in Kyoto and when we’re on the road. We have great faculty. We have a plan with many interesting events, but I think not too many.  We have enthusiastic Doshisha Peers.
This afternoon I will take the shinkansen to Tokyo for a little R&R before returning to Minnesota on Saturday, July 30th. I’ve been away for four months, and I’ll be happy to get home.
The picture above is of a little shrine in the street next to my apartment. Someone closes it every night, and opens it in the morning. It’s well-maintained, and I’ve seen people stop to pray there. I have found it very charming. Probably each of the objects has some significance, but it is all rather mysterious to me.
I learned a lot this trip, but there’s still a great deal I don’t know, so I’ll want to come back to this fascinating place to learn more . Our seminar arrives in Japan on March 26, 2012.
Signing off from Kyoto. Sayonara.

My work here, for now, is done. I’ve finished my classes at Doshisha, and the grades are in. I’ve said my good-bye’s to my friends.

The Carleton Linguistics in Kyoto Off-Campus Studies Seminar is ready. We have good accommodations, both here in Kyoto and when we’re on the road. We have great faculty. We have a plan with many interesting events, but I think not too many.  We have enthusiastic Doshisha Peers.

This afternoon I will take the shinkansen to Tokyo for a little R&R before returning to Minnesota on Saturday, July 30th. I’ve been away for four months, and I’ll be happy to get home.

The picture above is of a little shrine in the street next to my apartment. Someone closes it every night, and opens it in the morning. It’s well-maintained, and I’ve seen people stop to pray there. I have found it very charming. Probably each of the objects has some significance, but it is all rather mysterious to me.

I learned a lot this trip, but there’s still a great deal I don’t know, so I’ll want to come back to this fascinating place to learn more . Our seminar arrives in Japan on March 26, 2012.

Signing off from Kyoto. Sayonara.

Doshisha University has two campuses. One of them, the one we will be connected to, is in central Kyoto. It is called the Imadegawa campus, after the street that is one of its borders. Imadegawa is primarily for third and fourth year students. The other campus, Kyotanabe, is quite a ways south of Kyoto proper. It takes a little over an hour to get there by train. We wanted to recruit some first and second year students from the Kyotanabe campus, since next year they will be second and third year students, and may have somewhat more flexible schedules than the fourth year students, who come next April will be looking for jobs.
This is a picture of the Doshisha Peers from the Imadegawa campus. They are a terrific group, lively, enthusiastic, and eager to meet Carleton students next spring.

Doshisha University has two campuses. One of them, the one we will be connected to, is in central Kyoto. It is called the Imadegawa campus, after the street that is one of its borders. Imadegawa is primarily for third and fourth year students. The other campus, Kyotanabe, is quite a ways south of Kyoto proper. It takes a little over an hour to get there by train. We wanted to recruit some first and second year students from the Kyotanabe campus, since next year they will be second and third year students, and may have somewhat more flexible schedules than the fourth year students, who come next April will be looking for jobs.

This is a picture of the Doshisha Peers from the Imadegawa campus. They are a terrific group, lively, enthusiastic, and eager to meet Carleton students next spring.

The Doshisha Peers from the Kyotanabe campus. You will notice probably that they are all women. We had about 60 people come to the information session at the Kyotanabe campus, and all but one of them were female. For a program like this we expect that fewer men will be interested for a variety of reasons, but I don’t quite understand why we were so far out of balance at Kyotanabe this year.
Anyway, the Peers we got from Kyotanabe are terrific. Everyone is looking forward to the start of the seminar, now just a short eight months from now.

The Doshisha Peers from the Kyotanabe campus. You will notice probably that they are all women. We had about 60 people come to the information session at the Kyotanabe campus, and all but one of them were female. For a program like this we expect that fewer men will be interested for a variety of reasons, but I don’t quite understand why we were so far out of balance at Kyotanabe this year.

Anyway, the Peers we got from Kyotanabe are terrific. Everyone is looking forward to the start of the seminar, now just a short eight months from now.