Kowtow, borrowed from kau tau in Cantonese, is the act of deep respect shown by prostration, that is, kneeling and bowing so low as to have one's head touching the ground. An alternative Chinese term is ketou; the date of this custom's origin is sometime between the Spring and Autumn period, or the Warring States period of China's history because it is known to have been a custom by the time of the Qin dynasty. In East Asian culture, the kowtow is the highest sign of reverence, it was used to show reverence for one's elders and the Emperor, as well as for religious and cultural objects of worship. In modern times, usage of the kowtow has become reduced. In Imperial Chinese protocol, the kowtow was performed before the Emperor of China. Depending on the solemnity of the situation different grades of kowtow would be used. In the most solemn of ceremonies, for example at the coronation of a new Emperor, the Emperor's subjects would undertake the ceremony of the "three kneelings and nine kowtows", the so-called grand kowtow, which involves kneeling from a standing position three times, each time, performing the kowtow three times while kneeling.
Immanuel Hsu describes the "full kowtow" as "three kneelings and nine knockings of the head on the ground". As government officials represented the majesty of the Emperor while carrying out their duties, commoners were required to kowtow to them in formal situations. For example, a commoner brought before a local magistrate would be required to kowtow. A commoner is required to remain kneeling, whereas a person who has earned a degree in the Imperial examinations is permitted a seat. Since one is required by Confucian philosophy to show great reverence to one's parents and grandparents, children may be required to kowtow to their elderly ancestors on special occasions. For example, at a wedding, the marrying couple was traditionally required to kowtow to both sets of parents, as acknowledgement of the debt owed for their nurturing. Confucius believed there was a natural harmony between the body and mind and therefore, whatever actions were expressed through the body would be transferred over to the mind.
Because the body is placed in a low position in the kowtow, the idea is that one will convert to his or her mind a feeling of respect. What one does to oneself influences the mind. Confucian philosophy held that respect was important for a society, making bowing an important ritual; the kowtow, other traditional forms of reverence, were much maligned after the May Fourth Movement. Today, only vestiges of the traditional usage of the kowtow remain. In many situations, the standing bow has replaced the kowtow. For example, but not all, people would choose to kowtow before the grave of an ancestor, or while making traditional offerings to an ancestor. Direct descendants may kowtow at the funeral of an ancestor, while others would bow. During a wedding, some couples may kowtow to their respective parents, though the standing bow is today more common. In extreme cases, the kowtow can be used to express profound gratitude, apology, or to beg for forgiveness; the kowtow remains alive as part of a formal induction ceremony in certain traditional trades that involve apprenticeship or discipleship.
For example, Chinese martial arts schools require a student to kowtow to a master. Traditional performing arts also require the kowtow. Prostration is a general practice in Buddhism, not restricted to China; the kowtow is performed in groups of three before Buddhist statues and images or tombs of the dead. In Buddhism it is more termed either "worship with the crown" or "casting the five limbs to the earth" —referring to the two arms, two legs and forehead. For example, in certain ceremonies, a person would perform a sequence of three sets of three kowtows—stand up and kneel down again between each set—as an extreme gesture of respect; some Buddhist pilgrims would kowtow once for every three steps made during their long journeys, the number three referring to the Triple Gem of Buddhism, the Buddha, the Dharma, the Sangha. Prostration is practiced in India by Hindus to give utmost respect to their deities in temples and to parents and elders. Nowadays in modern times people show the regards to elders by touching their feet.
The word "kowtow" came into English in the early 19th century to describe the bow itself, but its meaning soon shifted to describe any abject submission or groveling. The term is still used in English with this meaning, disconnected from the physical act and the East Asian context; the kowtow was a significant issue for diplomats, since it was required to come into the presence of the Emperor of China, but it meant submission before him. The British embassies of George Macartney, 1st Earl Macartney and William Pitt Amherst, 1st Earl Amherst were unsuccessful because kowtowing would mean acknowledging their King as a subject of the Emperor. Dutch ambassador Isaac Titsingh did not refuse to kowtow during the course of his 1794–1795 mission to the imperial court of the Qianlong Emperor; the members of the Titsingh mission, including Andreas Everardus van Braam Houckgeest and Chrétien-Louis-Joseph de Guignes, made every effort to conform with the demands of the complex Imperial court etiquette.
On two occasions, the kowtow was performed by Chinese envoys to a foreign ruler – specificall
Gaijin is a Japanese word for foreigners and non-Japanese. The word is composed of two kanji: jin. Composed words that refer to foreign things include gaikoku and gaisha; the word can refer to nationality, race or ethnicity, concepts conflated in Japan. Some feel the word has come to have a negative or pejorative connotation, while other observers maintain it is neutral or positive. Gaikokújin is a more neutral and somewhat more formal term used in the Japanese government and in media; the word gaijin can be traced in writing to the 13th-century Heike Monogatari: 外人もなき所に兵具をとゝのへAssembling arms where there are no gaijin Here, gaijin refers to outsiders and potential enemies. Another early reference is in Renri Hishō by Nijō Yoshimoto, where it is used to refer to a Japanese person, a stranger, not a friend; the Noh play, Kurama tengu has a scene where a servant objects to the appearance of a traveling monk: 源平両家の童形たちのおのおのござ候ふに、かやうの外人は然るべからず候A gaijin doesn't belong here, where children from the Genji and Heike families are playing.
Here, gaijin means an outsider or unfamiliar person. The word gaikokújin is composed of jin; the Meiji government introduced and popularized the term, which came to replace ijin, ikokujin and ihōjin. As the Empire of Japan extended to Korea and to Taiwan, the term naikokújin came to refer to nationals of other imperial territories. While other terms fell out of use after World War II, gaikokújin remained the official term for non-Japanese people; some hold. While all forms of the word mean "foreigner" or "outsider", in practice gaikokújin and gaijin are used to refer to racially non-Japanese groups, principally Caucasians; however the term is sometimes applied to ethnic Japanese born and raised in other countries. Gaijin is commonly used within Japanese events such as baseball and professional wrestling to collectively refer to the visiting performers from the West who will tour the country. Japanese speakers refer to non-Japanese people as gaijin while they are overseas. People of Japanese descent native to other countries might call non-descendants gaijin, as a counterpart to nikkei.
Some usage of the word "gaijin" referred respectfully to the prestige and wealth of Caucasians or the power of western businesses. This interpretation of the term as positive or neutral in tone continues for some. However, though the term may be used without negative intent by many Japanese speakers, it is seen as derogatory by some and reflective of exclusionary attitudes. While the term itself has no derogatory meaning, it emphasizes the exclusiveness of Japanese attitude and has therefore picked up pejorative connotations that many Westerners resent. In light of these connotations, the more neutral gaikokújin is used as an alternative term to refer to non-Japanese people. Nanette Gottlieb, Professor of Japanese Studies at the School of Languages and Comparative Cultural Studies at the University of Queensland, suggests that the term has become controversial and is avoided now by most Japanese television broadcasters; the uncontroversial if formal gaikokújin is used instead. Gaijin appears in Western literature and pop culture.
It forms the title of such novels as Marc Olden's Gaijin, James Melville's Go gaijin, James Kirkup's Gaijin on the Ginza and James Clavell's Gai-Jin, as well as a song by Nick Lowe. It is the title of feature films such as Tizuka Yamazaki's Gaijin – Os Caminhos da Liberdade and Gaijin – Ama-me Como Sou, as well as animation shorts such as Fumi Inoue's Gaijin. List of terms for ethnic exogroups Alien Bule Guizi Gweilo Japanese abbreviated and contracted words Laowai Pendatang Sangokujin Sonnō jōi
Agura is the Japanese term for the position referred to as sitting cross-legged in English. The buttocks are on the floor and the legs are out in front, with the knees bent and each foot crossed beneath the other leg. In Japan, this posture is considered an informal alternative to the seiza position for men, it is considered unfeminine and uncouth for women to sit in the agura position
Frederick Starr was an American academic, "populist educator" born at Auburn, New York. As he was avid collector of charms and votive slips he was called Dr. Ofuda in Japan, he sold much of this collection to art collector and museum specialist Gertrude Bass Warner, it resides at the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art at the University of Oregon and the University of Oregon Knight Library Special Collections & University Archives. Starr earned an undergraduate degree at the University of Rochester and a doctorate in geology at Lafayette College. While working as a curator of geology at the American Museum of Natural History in New York, he became interested in anthropology and ethnology. Frederic Ward Putnam helped him become appointed as curator of AMNH's ethological collection. In this period, he became active in the Chautauqua circuit as a popular professor and, in 1888-89, as registrar; when William Rainey Harper, president of the Chautauqua Institution, was named President of the University of Chicago, he appointed Starr as an assistant professor of anthropology there.
Starr moved to the University of Chicago in 1891. He was an Assistant professor, he gained tenure in 1896. One of Starr's most infamous incidents occurred. Much like ethnologist Carl Sofus Lumholtz, Starr traveled to the Purépecha community of Cheran, Michoacan located in the Meseta Purépecha in the state of Michoacan. Unlike his predecessor, Starr obtained Amerindian bones, said to have been dug up from a nearby ancient burial, he intended to take these with him to the U. S. for the collection of the University of Chicago. The inhabitants of Cheran opposed having their ancestors exhumed and were rightly suspicious of Starr's motives for visiting Cheran. In 1905-06 Starr made a study of the pygmy races of Central Africa. In 1908 he did field work in the Philippine Islands, followed by Japan in 1909-10, Korea in 1911. In his Truth about the Congo Free State, a collection of articles regarding the Congo Free State, Starr wrote: Many a time... I have seen a man after being flogged and playing with his companions as if naught had happened.
Though I have seen many cases of this form of punishment, I have never seen blood drawn, nor the fainting of the victim." In this period there was mounting criticism of the state of near-slavery in which rubber workers were kept by colonial forces. Starr's work is cited as an example of the whitewashing campaign King Leopold II conducted from 1884 to 1912 known as the Congo Free State Propaganda War. Floggings with the chicotte were known and documented as an cruel form of torture by other observers, such as Roger Casement, an Anglo-Irish investigator, he extensively reported on the abuse of the indigenous peoples by the private Belgian police which the king used to impose a state of virtual slavery for rubber workers. Starr happened to be in Japan when the 1923 Great Kantō earthquake and subsequent major fires struck the main island of Honshū. In the absence of news from the devastated area, speculation about his safety was published in the New York Times, his plans to spend several months researching the vicinity of Mt. Fuji were not specific, nor was the extent of the quake area known.
Reports that the area near Mt. Fuji were hard hit led to increased concerns; the US Embassy in Tokyo published Dr. Starr's name among the list of survivors. Dr. Starr had escaped to the relative safety of Zojo-ji, a famous Buddhist Temple in Tokyo's Shiba district in what is today Minato ward. A brief description from a letter he wrote to friends in Auburn, New York, was printed in the New York Times: We went to the temple grounds, but at midnight, the priests took us up higher and higher to the innermost temple. Here on the topmost step, I sat till morning, watching the brazen sky beyond the slope meaning ruin to millions." Dr. Starr died of bronchial pneumonia at age 74 in Tokyo, August 14, 1933. Services were held at Trinity Cathedral in Tokyo. Among those attending was Japanese Premier Makoto Saito, he was survived by Lucy Starr, who helped execute his estate after his death. Order of Leopold. Order of the Crown of Italy. Order of the Sacred Treasure. University of Chicago, Department of Anthropology, Starr Lectureship.
Catalogue of Collections of Objects Illustrating Mexican Folklore Indians of South Mexico The Ainu Group of the Saint Louis Exposition The Truth about the Congo In Indian Mexico Filipino Riddles Japanese Proverbs and Pictures Liberia: Description, Problems Mexico and the United States Japanese Collectors and What They Collect Fujiyama, the Sacred Mountain of Japan.. Parezo, Nancy J. and Don D. Fowler.. "Taking Ethnological Training Outside the Classroom: the 1904 Louisiana Exposition as Field School," Histories of Anthropology Annual, Vol. 2, Regina Darnel and Frederic W. Gleach, eds. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press. ISBN 978-0-8032-6663-6 "DR. STARR DIES, 74. EXPECTED TO LIVE TO 120 Spoke Once of Circumstances That'Justify Cannibalism'uWas Honored by 3 Nations". New York Times. August 15, 1933. Retrieved 2008-08-09. New York Times. August 15, 1933. Gillis, Frank J. Starr Collection of Recordings from the Congo -- bio note. Archives of Traditional Music, Indiana University. Starr papers -- bio note.
University of Chicago Library and Archives. Starr Photographs Collection, 1894-1910 -- bio note. Smithsonian
A tatami is a type of mat used as a flooring material in traditional Japanese-style rooms. Traditionally made using rice straw to form the core, the cores of contemporary tatami are sometimes composed of compressed wood chip boards or polystyrene foam. With a covering of woven soft rush straw, tatami are made in standard sizes, with the length twice the width, an aspect ratio of 2:1. On the long sides, they have edging of brocade or plain cloth, although some tatami have no edging. In martial arts the tatami is the floor of the training ground in a Dojo and the floor for competition within a martial arts tournament; the term tatami is derived from the verb tatamu, meaning to pile. This indicates that the early tatami were thin and could be folded up when not used or piled in layers. Tatami were a luxury item for the nobility. During the Heian period, when the shinden-zukuri architectural style of aristocratic residences was consummated, the flooring of shinden-zukuri palatial rooms were wooden, tatami were only used as seating for the highest aristocrats.
In the Kamakura period, there arose the shoin-zukuri architectural style of residence for the samurai and priests who had gained power. This architectural style reached its peak of development in the Muromachi period, when tatami came to be spread over whole rooms, beginning with small rooms. Rooms spread with tatami came to be known as zashiki, rules concerning seating and etiquette determined the arrangement of the tatami in the rooms, it is said that prior to the mid-16th century, the ruling nobility and samurai slept on tatami or woven mats called goza, while commoners used straw mats or loose straw for bedding. The lower classes had mat-covered earth floors. Tatami were popularized and reached the homes of commoners toward the end of the 17th century. Houses built in Japan today have few tatami-floored rooms, if any. Having just one is not uncommon; the rooms having tatami flooring and other such traditional architectural features are referred to as nihonma or washitsu, "Japanese-style rooms".
The size of tatami differs between different regions in Japan. Kyoto – within this area, tatami measure 0.955 m by 1.91 m. Tatami of this size are referred to as Kyōma tatami. Nagoya – In this region measure 0.91 m by 1.82 m, are referred to as Ainoma tatami. Tokyo – here tatami measure 0.88 m by 1.76 m. Tatami of this size are referred to as Kantōma tatami. In terms of thickness, 5.5 cm is average for a Kyōma tatami, while 6.0 cm is the norm for a Kantōma tatami. A half mat is called a hanjō, a mat of three-quarter length, used in tea-ceremony rooms, is called daimedatami. In terms of traditional Japanese length units, a tatami is 1 ken by 0.5 ken, or equivalently 6 shaku by 3 shaku – formally this is 1.81818 by 0.90909 metres, the size of Nagoya tatami. Note that a shaku is the same length as one foot in the traditional English-American measurement system. In Japan, the size of a room is measured by the number of tatami mats, about 1.653 square meters. Alternatively, in terms of traditional Japanese area units, room area is measured in terms of tsubo, where one tsubo is the area of two tatami mats.
Some common room sizes are: 4 1⁄2 mats = 9 shaku × 9 shaku ≈ 2.73 m × 2.73 m 6 mats = 9 shaku × 12 shaku ≈ 2.73 m × 3.64 m 8 mats = 12 shaku × 12 shaku ≈ 3.64 m × 3.64 mShops were traditionally designed to be 5 1⁄2 mats, tea rooms are 4 1⁄2 mats. There are rules concerning the layout of the tatami mats in a room. In the Edo period, "auspicious" tatami arrangements and "inauspicious" tatami arrangements were distinctly differentiated, the tatami accordingly would be rearranged depending on the occasion. In modern practice, the "auspicious" layout is ordinarily used. In this arrangement, the junctions of the tatami form a "T" shape. An auspicious tiling requires the use of 1⁄2 mats to tile a room. An inauspicious layout is said to bring bad fortune. Higashiyama Bunka in Muromachi period Media related to Tatami at Wikimedia Commons