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Senior Integrative Project


The arts have long been tools used to prop up political visions, and Japan’s traditional crafts are no exception to this trend. Japanese ceramics in particular have enjoyed, or perhaps endured, era after era of patronage by successive governments and movements over their more than a millennium of history. Appropriated by a wave of nationalism in the Meiji period, the rokkoyō (six ancient kilns), long famous for their rustic style and acclaimed tea wares, were converted along with many other traditional crafts into symbols of the Japanese national spirit. In the postwar period, however, without necessarily losing their national importance, these traditional ceramics have built for themselves a new niche as symbols of local pride, with the help of a busy convergence of economic and community interests. This paper aims to uncover the process by which the tea-taste wares of the rokkoyō became symbols of local and prefectural identity in a postwar Japan often falsely characterized as culturally homogenous.

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Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License



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