The purpose of my research is to understand the meaning behind Japanese bread among Japanese people. Although bread is not something native to Japan, the Japanese have for over five hundred years made improvements to bread so it would become palatable to themselves. In the end Japanese people succeeded in creating bread specific to Japan— “Japanese bread”. However, because Japanese bread has been generated specifically for the Japanese, it is not something common in rest of the world. This fact makes it difficult for the Japanese living abroad to obtain Japanese bread amid increasing globalization.
Material collected between February and September 2015 during fieldwork conducted among Japanese people in San Diego, CA, for this study, reveals that most people have begun baking Japanese bread on their own as a result of seeking the bread that can satisfy their appetites. Even though everyone has different motives and goals for bread baking, Japanese women specifically share common features in their baking. Japanese bread baking is not simply for indulging their appetite for Japanese bread but for fulfilling a role as Japanese women. Viewed from the understanding of the traditional notion of “good wives, wise mothers” representing self-sacrifice and devotion to family, Japanese wives and mothers make an effort to learn and bake bread to feed the best food to their families.
A larger aim of this research is to contribute to the field of folklore, especially the study of material culture. The study of foodways and other genres of material culture share the directions and theories of folklore scholarship. Different from other genres of material culture showing the individuals’ identity through subcultural objects, scholars in food studies tend to address staple foods as a source of symbolism in a given culture and the emergence of a cultural identity or a group’s identity through such food. To expand this tradition, I have shown the intimate connection between the Japanese and bread as non-staple food of the Japanese in the individual level by interpreting individuals’ raw voices gathered during fieldwork.
|Commitee:||Foster, Michael, McDowell, John, Schrempp, Gregory|
|Department:||Folklore and Ethnomusicology|
|School Location:||United States -- Indiana|
|Source:||DAI-A 79/03(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Keywords:||Bread, Foodways, Japanese identity, Material culture, Unesco, Washoku|
Copyright in each Dissertation and Thesis is retained by the author. All Rights Reserved
The supplemental file or files you are about to download were provided to ProQuest by the author as part of a
dissertation or thesis. The supplemental files are provided "AS IS" without warranty. ProQuest is not responsible for the
content, format or impact on the supplemental file(s) on our system. in some cases, the file type may be unknown or
may be a .exe file. We recommend caution as you open such files.
Copyright of the original materials contained in the supplemental file is retained by the author and your access to the
supplemental files is subject to the ProQuest Terms and Conditions of use.
Depending on the size of the file(s) you are downloading, the system may take some time to download them. Please be