Furusato mimessFurusato (home, hometown, and/or place of origin) is a revered and idealized concept in Japan. On an individual level, it plays a central role in personal identity; in a broader social and cultural milieu, it is constitutive of a sense of nostalgia for a romanticized and impossible past; and in the political and legal realms, it connects with ideas of Japaneseness and the construction of foreign others. While the specific forms it takes in context give the idea of furusato a Japanese veneer, however, it in fact has close analogues in ideas of ‘home’ and ‘origin’ around the world.

This volume collects essays exploring furusato and its cognates in other languages and regions. 14 scholars from Japan and Europe employ a diverse array of disciplinary tools, drawing from history, philosophy, literature, anthropology, religious studies, and art history, to map out the contours of home and elucidate the meanings contained within it.

Christopher Craig is Associate Professor of Japanese History at Tohoku University in Japan.

Enrico Fongaro is Associate Professor of Western Aesthetics and Italian at Tohoku University in Japan.

Aldo Tollini is Retired Professor at the Department of Asian and North African Studies at Ca’ Foscari University of Venice.