Conferences

Gdańsk Webinar, Poland 2020: Between.Edukacja Kosmopolis 2020. (Presentation in Polish)

Gredżuk, Szymon and Sylwia Dobkowska. ‘Przekład kulturowy: Teatr w Japonii.’ Between.Edukacja Kosmopolis 2020, Webinarium. (22 October 2020)

W ramach tego webinarium zaprezentowaliśmy i omówiliśmy przykłady kilku klasycznych form teatralnych ukształtowanych w Japonii, takich jak kagura, nō, kabuki i na przykładzie okinawskiego teatru kumiodori ukazaliśmy jak poszczególne formy czerpały z siebie nawzajem i przekazywały ponadczasowe treści, dopasowując je do innego środowiska kulturowego. 

Kraków, Poland 2020: 101 lat relacji polsko-japońskich. Perspektywy, działania, więzi. Muzeum Sztuki i Techniki Japońskiej Manggha. (Presentation in Polish)

Screenshot 2020-03-04 at 11.15.39.pngGredżuk, Szymon and Sylwia Dobkowska. “Okinawa Research Group – Kumiodori.” 101 lat relacji polsko-japońskich. Perspektywy, działania, więzi. Muzeum Sztuki i Techniki Japońskiej Manggha. 27-28 lutego 2020. (27 February 2020)

Establishing a new Research Group that studies Okinawa and the Ryukyus. Our first project is about the Ryukyuan traditional theatre – Kumiodori.

Poznań, Poland 2019: Connections. Between the word, the sound and the image: A Centenary of Polish-Japanese Diplomatic Relations. (Presentation in English)

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Gredżuk, Szymon and Sylwia Dobkowska. “Kumiodori – 300 Anniversary of Theatre from Okinawa.” Connections. Between the word, the sound and the image: A Centenary of Polish-Japanese Diplomatic Relations. Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań, Poland. 4-6 December 2019. (5 December 2019)

Amsterdam, the Netherlands 2019: World Association of Lesson Studies (WALS) International Conference. (Poster in English)

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Kobayashi Minoru, Kengo Kakazu, Isao Katagiri, Szymon Gredżuk. How effective is mixed method for the lesson analysis? On example of a study into how “mutual praising” influences motivation to exercise in the physical education lesson in the upper grades of primary school. Poster for World Association of Lesson Studies (WALS) International Conference in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. September 2019

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Katagiri Isao, Kengo Kakazu, Chiharu Iwaya, Yuko Murayoshi, Szymon Gredzuk, Minoru Kobayashi. Issues with Teacher Training in Japan. Poster for World Association of Lesson Studies (WALS) International Conference in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. September 2019.

Okinawa, Japan 2019: Successful public defence of the doctoral thesis. (Conducted in Japanese)

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Title: International Legends of Count Benyowsky’s Memoirs and Travels: A Comparative Study on Coastal Narratives of Eastern Europe, Japan and the Ryukyus.

Warszawa, Polska 2018: 17th ICHG 2018 Warsaw (International Conference of Historical Geographers). (Presented in English)

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Title: Rogue exploration and charting of the Northern Pacific by M.A.Benyowsky (1771).

Keywords: Benyowsky, Benyovszky, maritime travel writing, history of navigation, North Pacific cartography.

In the second half of the 18th century vast areas of the Northern Pacific remained unknown and unchartered for the majority of European powers. Contrary to the famous scientific explorations of the time, which were designed to change this status quo, one pioneering voyage occurred quite unexpectedly, nevertheless producing considerable geopolitical and cartographical influence.

Such adventure out of necessity was undertaken by Mauritius Benyowsky (1746-1786), who while fleeing from exile in Kamchatka, claim to have navigated to the St. Lawrence Island, west coasts of Alaska and southward to Macau, touching Aleutian Is., Japan, Ryukyu Is. and Taiwan on the run. His Memoirs and Travels (Benyowsky 1790) became an increasingly popular story and one of the earliest accounts on the areas he visited.

In the light of the Japanese sources, it appears that behind the numerous creative embellishments several facts can be established about the random encounters between the escapees and the local communities. Official letters dispatched by Benyowsky imposed unforeseen tension to the Japanese relations with Russia, while already in Europe, he endeavoured to establish his esteem as navigator and explorer.

This presentation aims to introduce an analysis of recently discovered map (Bandzo-Antkowiak 2013) being considered Benyowsky’s authorship in comparison with his memoirs, contrasting accounts of his shipmates and local historical sources. It is a multilingual and interdisciplinary reevaluation of this controversial navigation and investigation into its impact on geopolitics and cartography.

Tokyo, Japan 2018: ASCJ 2018 (Asian Studies Conference Japan). (Presented in English)

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Title: (Hi)stories from the coastal contact zones. Japan in maritime writing of M.A.Benyowsky.

In the second half of the 18th century, regardless of the Edo shogunate’s policies, maritime interactions in the Northern Pacific were on the rise. Unofficial encounters, which occasionally occurred in the coastal contact zones, like piracy, smuggling and shipwrecks, are often being overlooked. However minor and temporary these interactions were, they often produced some extraordinary tales and influenced the course of history.

Series of such unusual events happened in 1771, while a group of exiles commanded by Mauritius Benyowsky managed to navigate a ship along Japanese shores from Kamchatka to Macao. Necessitated to anchor briefly in places like Awa, Tosa or Amami Ōshima they met with different communities and mixed reception. Benyowsky’s Memoirs and Travels became one of the earliest and most popular accounts in Europe and regardless of their doubted veracity, they influenced perception of the areas he visited. On the Japanese side, his sudden arrival and messages he left were misunderstood and misused in the process of reconsideration of the local geopolitics.

This paper looks at multilingual literary and historical sources in order to track how this particular narrative developed through various prisms of politics, interests, and misinterpretations. After nearly 250 years of parallel mutation a story of the same event becomes an intricate hybrid of disintegrated histories and literary fictions, and since these are at times indivisible, they often influence each other.

Okinawa, Japan 2017: RETI 2017 (Réseau d’Excellence des Territoires Insulaires) in Okinawa. (Presented in English)

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Title: Maritime Writing and Island History at Crossroads – M.A.Benyowsky on Amami Ōshima.

With the advance of global exploration separate histories and cultures started to intertwine and develop together. Local events in the contact zones became joined in the network of global history. There are scarcely any places physically undiscovered by now, but volumes of literature waiting to be read in order to rediscover and reinvent the places known well. Literature can connect the islands, just as the seas and oceans do. That is why maritime travel writing in particular can be a reference to look for the interconnected island histories and prospective economic resources.

In this presentation I would like to analyse a case study of a particular travel journal – Memoirs and Travels of M.A.Benyowsky (1790) and the perspective it shows on Amami Ōshima, one of the Ryukyus, in comparison with available history sources. Its author managed to navigate a stolen vessel filled with fellow mutineers from Kamchatka to Macau, and out of necessity touched on entirely random places like Aogashima, Shikoku, Amami or Taiwan.

Adventurous life of this cosmopolitan and self-proclaimed King of Madagascar was fabulous enough for the contemporary hype of sentimental travel writing, yet embellished and republished it proved to be an increasingly popular story, with further potential to be utilized globally. I would like to explore the possibilities of using a literary source to develop a local tourism attraction and incorporate a foreign story into local history in global context.