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  • Titill er á ensku Rice: More than a Meal. The Importance of Rice to the Japanese Society and Culture
  • Bakkalár
  • Útdráttur er á ensku

    This essay discusses the influence rice has had on the Japanese society and culture. It explores how rice has, since its cultivation started in Japan, impacted the society and people‘s morals. The essay is divided into three chapters. The first chapter focuses on when rice arrived to Japan, leading to the start of a society formation. It discusses when and how rice became the staple of the Japanese people and how rice has led to Japan being a homogeneous nation, discriminating those who are outside of their group.
    The second chapter focuses on rice‘s cultural importance that can be found in everyday actions and speech. Rice‘s significant influence on Shinto, Japan‘s indigenous religious beliefs and practices, and the connection between rice, deities and men that clearly distributes how rice has come to be symbolized above any other food products, whereas it has even come to signify the Japanese self.
    While the second chapter focuses on culture, the third and last chapter discusses the Japanese modern society and how the influence of early rice cultivation has affected people’s morals and the society structure that we know today.
    Through the information expressed in the main issue, the conclusion reveals how still today the Japanese relate to rice as a timeless part of Japan’s history and culture and how rice serves as their identity, separating Japan form the outer world. As for rice cultivation, its influence on the society is still prominent but has unfortunately led to some negative aspects such as suppressed individuality. However, with the rise of modern pop-culture, this might be changing.

  • 10.5.2013

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