The Gift of Peace: Persons, Things and Futurity in the U.S.-Japan Friendship Doll Exchange

Global Encounters Lunch Series
Monday, November 18, 12:00 p.m.

7 Floor, Sullivan Gallery Conference Room 

In response to the Immigration Act of 1924, children in the U.S. and Japan exchanged “friendship dolls” in 1927. Some of these dolls resurfaced in the 1970s and have inspired further exchanges between U.S. and Japanese citizens. In this talk, I examine the history of this trans-Pacific encounter mediated by dolls. What kind of social relation have these dolls created? What kind of memory has transpired in this exchange? What kind of futurity has this exchange projected?

Speaker Bio: 

Hirokazu Miyazaki is the Kay Davis Professor and Professor of Anthropology at Northwestern University. He previously taught anthropology at Cornell and served as the Director of the Mario Einaudi Center for International Studies from 2015-2018. Miyazaki has completed ethnographic field research in Fiji, Japan and the U.S. and has published extensively on theories of exchange, futurity and hope.


Sponsors: The office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion for Academic Affairs, International Affairs, and Multicultural Affairs