Documentary films on Hiroshima and Rikuzen Takata created by the graduates of Peace and Conflict Studies from Syria were screened at TUFS cinema followed by a talk session

December 8, 2022

On Dec. 7 (Wed), 2022 at Agora Global Prometheus Hall, a screening of the “Japan: Rising from the ashes and the rubbles” created by the graduates of the Peace and Conflict Studies (PCS) course(*1) from Syria was held.

These were the documentary films on the reconstruction of “Hiroshima” (atomic bombing caused by war) and “Tohoku” (natural disaster) as seen by the international students from Syria where the civil war continues. The episodes also review how these incidents affected Japan politically, socially, and economically, and how the Japanese were able to rebuild their country after the disasters. Today, there are still conflicts going on around the world, but these documentaries give hope to people in war-torn countries that no matter what happens, things can get better in the future.

After the screening, a talk session was held with Prof. Hideaki Shinoda (Institute of Global Studies, Tokyo University of Foreign Studies), and the two PCS graduates and the creators of these films Mohammed Almasri (Doctoral student of Waseda University) and Mahmoud Sheikh Hussein (freelance journalist). The talk session was held in English. And simultaneous interpretation was provided by the 4 students in the 2nd year Master’s program of TUFS Graduate School of Global Studies Japanese-English Interpreting and Translation Program(*2) (Chiharu Ado, Tetsuya Obatake, Nene Kiyomoto, and Arisa Tamura).

During the talk session, discussions were held on what impressed them through the filming, and what they felt through interviews with the victims of the disaster. AlMasri said, “I was impressed by the difference between the Japanese spirit when the disaster struck and that of other regions, such as the Middle East, and the way the government and citizens have worked together to rebuild, rather than in the form of revenge.”  Sheikh Hussein mentioned “There are wars and conflicts not only in Syria but all over the world. Pointing a camera can be dangerous, but I want to show the world with my camera.”. Prof. Shinoda who also appeared in the film said “I am happy to be able to work together with the graduates of the PCS course and my research to be useful in such occasion. “ During the Q & A session that followed, many people shared their comments and impressions.

Outside the venue, a photo exhibition by Afghan families was held.

(*1) At TUFS, we have the Peace and Conflict Studies Course (MA program)/Peace and Conflict Studies program(D) under the Graduate School of Global Studies to promote research on conflict and peacebuilding through our network of universities in conflict-affected regions and nurture leaders who play an active role in the international community and contribute to peacebuilding around the world. We accept new students in October of each year. The language of instructions is English.

(*2) We have the Japanese-English Interpreting and Translation Program within the Graduate School of Global Studies. The students gain experiences by providing simultaneous interpretations at the lecture events and classes held at this university.