第7回大会報告 パネル5

パネル5:The Imagination of Disaster 2: Analyzing the Effects|報告:Yoshiaki SATO

July 8, 2012, 14:00-16:00
Collaboration Room 3, Bldg. 18, Komaba Campus, The University of Tokyo

The Imagination of Disaster 2: Analyzing the Effects

Leisure Performances, Representation of Local Identity, and Recovery from Disasters
Jon Griffin Donlon (Tokai University)

An Unnaming: The Haitian Earthquake Metaphor
Danielle Legros Georges (Lesley University)

When We Ourselves Tremble: Tawada Yoko’s Leçons de Poétique & the Othering of Disaster
Paul McQuade (Sophia University)

【Chair】Yoshiaki Sato (Independent Scholar)

"Analyzing the effects" is the subtile of this panel, but the effects of the disasters discussed by the three speakers* are ones that are still felt in the present. They resist objectification. They urge participants to take imaginative approaches, as was exactly the case of this panel.
(*Prof. Lamarchand, known for his anthropological study of the Chernobyl disaster, was not able to come.)

Dr. Jon Donlon points to the healing power of tradition manifested in local festivals. He regards each of the two apparently remote traditions -- the bull pushing festival of Yamakoshi Village (now part of Nagaoka, Niigata) and the carnival of New Orleans (Mardi Gras) -- as usable social capital, "a reservoir of good will" to be discharged during each community's recovery processes from, respectively, the 2004 Niigata Chuetsu Earthquake and New Orleans' 2005 flooding caused by Hurricane Katrina. He argues that even today those traditional festivals remain more than just commodities of tourism; the festive settings function as a stage for local people to collectively display their prowess, thereby providing a variety of positive resources to the community. This view urges that an effective disaster recovery program be a holistic engagement with the community. It should not be a free-standing effort; it must incorporate socio-economic activities of local people. What added extra persuasiveness to his presentation is his intimate familiarity with Mardi Gras as a longtime resident of Louisiana. He even brought gifts and threw them to the audience in what seemed the true spirit of the carnival.

Dr. Danielle Georges is a publishing poet as well as a professor of modern poetry and Caribbean literature. She seeks ways to look into the minds of disaster-stricken Haitians after the 2010 catastrophe. Her paper is an invitation for us to unlearn what we know of the Haitian earthquake and re-imagine it as some unnamable entity. "Bagay la" -- meaning "that thing" in Creole Haitian -- is what they call it, or choose not to call it. The point, she argues, is that the sufferers of the great disaster at least initially defy any specific image for "that thing" because none can accommodates the truth. While avoiding the typical voyeuristic images exploited by the media, she depicts the harsh history of the nation, presents the daunting set of circumstances impinging on displaced persons, and takes us to the metaphoric and proverbial ways in which Haitians communicate with each other. She reads sections of local poets' works adding her own translations. By the end there was assurance that resorting to poetry is indeed effective in analyzing disasters.

Lastly came Mr. Paul McQuade’s conceptual adventure. The paper titled "When We Ourselves Tremble" is his own explication of Tawada Yoko's lectures delivered at the University of Hamburg, and later published in French translation. While introducing the lectures that hadn't been available in English (or only partly available in Japanese) he led us to think, following Tawada's thought, of the gap that lies between the two differently constructed linguistic worlds (e.g, in Japanese the singular and the plural remain for the most part undifferentiated). The gap leads to the issue of insularity inherent in a “different” language like Japanese. Thrown into this argument is the geographical image of Japan being a far-away island, and then, through Tawada's own wordplay, two "islands" come into view: Fukushima and Hiroshima (shima meaning island in Japanese). Thus, as part of Michinoku (the back country), Fukushima becomes a victim of "othering" processes executed by the central power. There was a sense of mission in the speaker’s voice as he delivered Towada's message back into her native land.

Yoshiaki SATO (Independent Scholar)

パネル「災害の想像 そのⅡ」の会場には、記憶も生々しい今世紀の惨事――新潟県中越地震(2004)、ハリケーン・カトリーナ(2005)、ハイチ地震(2010)、東日本大震災(2011)――に関して、クリエイティブな思考が満ちた(チェルノブイリ原発事故に関して長い研究歴を持つフレデリック・ラマルシャン氏は、突然の事由で参加できなかったが)。


現代詩、カリブ文学を講じ、自らも詩集を出版されているジョージ氏は、メディアにありがちな営利主義的な覗き見趣味の映像や言説をかいくぐってハイチの惨状を、犠牲者に共感する形で想像するための視線を提供した。ハイチ語(フランス語系クレオール)で書かれた、ツアリストへの呼びかけの詩の朗読や、この島が経験してきた残酷な歴史の概説を含みつつ、地震の現実に見合うどのようなイメージを我々は持つことができるかを問い、地震を名指すのに、なぜハイチの人は"bagay la"(ソイツ:that thing)という、「名付けの拒否としての呼称」を用いたのか、彼らの心のうちの想像へとフロアを誘った。

東日本大震災後、多和田葉子がハンブルグ大学で行った3つの講演が、他のエッセイと共に、Journal des jours tremblants: Après Fukushima の題で仏訳され、出版されている。それを部分的に英訳しつつマクウェイド氏は、日本語と西欧語の言語と表記のシステムのギャップにふれて、言語自体に内包される ethnocentrism(=島国性)について語り、多和田自身に倣って広島と福島というふたつの「島」に関し、歴史的/文化的意味作用を膨らませた。ポスト構造主義的に意味作用を脱構築していく姿勢を示しながら、「東北の地」が一つの Other として核による電気供給源として中央権力に組み込まれる歴史的必然にも触れつつ、物事の意味を全体性=同一性の中へ押し込めようとする力に抗するものとして、多和田のテクストを読む試みが、よどみない英語で披露された。


フロアの反応も活発だった。ハイチ人の地震の呼称として、震動の擬声語を擬人化したような「グドゥグドゥ Goudou Goudou」という語が登場したことは「バゲラ」との対比においてどのように考えたらよいか。東北被災地に都会人が介入しうる際には、いかなる倫理的ディシプリンが必要か。意味とパワーの秩序の閉域を崩すものとしての放射能に関するコメントもあったし、多和田のヒロシマとフクシマを論じたテクストが日本語媒体に登場しない不思議について、参加者が頭をひねる一幕もあった。

ドンロン氏の計らいで、マルディ・グラの派手な飾りつきの紐を(フロアの "Throw me something" というかけ声に応えて)投げ与えるショーが実演されたときには、会場は和やかな笑いに包まれた。



Leisure Performances, Representation of Local Identity, and Recovery from Disasters
Jon Griffin Donlon (Tokai University)

There is little question that leisure performances such as the Carnival of New Orleans [Mardi Gras], and the bull pushing festival in Niigata, Japan, often help knit together local community, reflect group identity and values, and act to enforce continuity of culture while at the same time fostering so-called “hybridity.” That is, these festive settings are species of liminal zones offering both insulation from change and mechanisms through which cultural change may be absorbed, altered, and otherwise “handled;” quite literally played with in order to suss out danger or utility.

In 2004, the region around Niigata, Japan was powerfully struck by a devastating earthquake. In 2005, New Orleans was inundated by the effects of Katrina. Then, in 2010, Louisiana was impacted by the great man-made disaster of the British Petroleum drilling rupture. In such cases, cultural performances can play an important role in the reemergence of the pre-existing human communities. This paper focuses on discussing how cultural performances such as these festive settings often function to create social capital (good will) and, especially in times of disaster, “discharge” much of this capital both to sustain a continuity of tradition and to negotiate with the “new,” or emerging circumstances.

I will briefly reprise earlier research on the two regions, explaining the role of the relevant leisure performances and establishing a little of each community’s cultural past. This paper outlines the previous natural disasters and explains how the BP man-made event has now affected Louisiana. I will discuss how, in both regions, there was strong controversy -- each community struggling with the idea of going forward with the leisure performances (the bull pushing festival in Niigata and Mardi Gras), with contrarian voices suggesting that the resources involved be directly invested rather than “indirectly” consumed via creation of community through cultural performance continuity.

An Unnaming: The Haitian Earthquake Metaphor
Danielle Legros Georges (Lesley University)

In January 2010, Haiti suffered a devastating earthquake which nearly destroyed its capital Port-au-Prince; a quake in which an extraordinarily large number of children, women, and men lost their lives. More than one million quake survivors were made homeless; with many remaining so today.

Everywhere in Port-au-Prince remain signs of the earthquake: Debris not yet picked up by the government; exposed interior walls; the blue and white tarps and tents under which people live—under which girls and women are especially vulnerable to violence; the houses bearing such stamps as MTPTC 4 or MTPTC à démolir painted by the Ministry for Public Works to indicate the degree of a building’s structural solidity or compromise.

Haitians, refer to the earthquake as bagay la -- “that thing.” If a metaphor is a transfer, then the shift from the term “earthquake” to “that thing” has us leaping from a precise and measurable natural phenomenon to an unnamed zone or space. We know what an earthquake is: a trembling of the earth; seismic waves that propagate in fluid or solid materials. What the newly-created Haitian metaphor does is signal to us not what an earthquake is, or what the January 2010 earthquake was—but what this earthquake means, has meant, and will continue to mean for Haitians. My essay will examine the Haitian metaphoric representation of the earthquake -- touching upon the politics of ruin so often associated with Haiti, as well as the aesthetic/poetic tradition from which the new metaphor springs.

When We Ourselves Tremble: Tawada Yoko’s Leçons de Poétique & the Othering of Disaster
Paul McQuade (Sophia University)

Tawada Yoko has been heralded as one of the most important Japanese writers of the contemporary global world. Born in Japan, she currently resides in Germany, and has garnered an impressive list of awards in both countries and in both languages. In the wake of the 2011 Fukushima disaster, Tawada was invited to give three lessons in poetics at the University of Hamburg. These lessons were then translated from the German into French, and collected alongside other essays in a book entitled Journal des jours tremblants: Après Fukushima (A Record of Trembling Days: After Fukushima). As yet, none of these essays exists in English, and only one in Japanese. This paper explores Tawada’s construction and critique of Japan’s historical road to modernity and its relation to its insularity and the Other and othering of the Occident. From there, it examines an essay which deals explicitly with the earthquake, tsunami and subsequent nuclear crisis which has begun to go under the appellation of “3/11”. I examine “After Fukushima” in relation to the historical narrative of the previous essays, exploring the dynamics of a the transcendental effect of disaster, arguing that Tawada demonstrates how the ultimately ungraspable experience of disaster leads to the fall-back of othering, whereby Fukushima, like Hiroshima, becomes an isolated “island” of meaning. In doing so, I open to an English-speaking audience a perspective of the 3/11 disaster which challenges dominant cultural paradigms of self and Other, East and West, and the transparent dominance of those who survive.