5. An Illustrated Guide to Insects

The drawing-up of “an illustrated guide to the insects” of the staff of ASAFAS showing which are ants and which are grasshoppers, I suppose, be left to any interested person who might use as clues the columns that introduce members of staff on our home page. How about the students?My knowledge of the entire student body is too limited for purposes of compiling “an illustrated insect guide” to students. However, it is nevertheless possible to indicate the variety of the research interests and chosen geographical areas of the students. The students who entered the Graduate School in 2000 were required to present brief reports on the themes that they wanted to study in the Graduate School as a preliminary assignment prior to the entrance ceremony. I give several of these themes, as follows:

  • A comparison of ethnic groups in Malaysia with respect to childbirth practices;
  • The political economy of mangrove development in southern Vietnam;
  • The history of urban formation and housing in the Philippines;
  • Nation-building and ethnicity in India;
  • The role of intellectuals in Islamic movements in Algeria;
  • Deforestation in Madagascar and lemur habitat conditions;
  • The potential of indigenous African agricultural methods for Africa’s development;
  • Comprehensive research on the Tingatinga school of painting in Tanzania.

Among these students, there are those who have already departed in directions different from the themes described in the above list. No matter how the themes have changed, the fact remains that the variety needed for compiling “an illustrated guide to insects,” is reflected in the breadth of the academic interests of the students.

A New Year commemorative photograph of the faculty friendship society – the Jakane-kai – of the ASAFAS and the Center of Southeast Asian Studies, 2000.

KATO Tsuyoshi
Doing Fieldwork on the Graduate School of Asian and African Area Studies

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