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Tomoko Tamari

Staff details

PositionLecturer in Sociology
Email t.tamari (@gold.ac.uk)
Phone+44 (0)20 7919 7729
Tomoko Tamari

Japanese culture and society; consumer culture; women, department store and aestheticization; visual sociology; the body

Tomoko joined Goldsmiths in 2013 after being a research fellow at Nottingham Trent University. Her academic background is in sociology, mass communication studies and women’s studies. Her current academic interests cross over sociology, cultural studies and body studies.

Current Research Interests

Long standing interests in:

  • Consumer culture, visual culture, spatial culture (space and architecture); body studies, modes of embodiment; food culture.
  • Department store culture, especially the emergence of new forms of aestheticization and femininity in 20th century Japan and the ways in which consumer culture is embedded in everyday lifestyles and generates new aesthetic sensibilities. 

Current working areas:

  • Animation and human perception - especially focusing on the different workings of affect in digital aesthetics and hand-drawing moving images.
  • Technology and modern architectural design - an exploration of living space design and architectural aesthetics through the Japanese modern architectural movement, Metabolism.
  • Food culture and lifestyles - focusing on the role of cultural intermediaries and the reformation of cuisine and ‘taste’ in 20th century Japan.
  • The body and medicine - exploring the medical discourse of biological immunity in relation to the probiotics food/drinks industry.
  • Body Image and Prosthetic Aesthetics in Paralympic Culture – an exploration of how the modern discourse of prosthesis has shifted from the functional and camouflaged body to the empowered and exhibited body which creates a new cultural sensitivity – prosthetic aesthetics.
  • Techno-animism - problematizing the binary divide between technology and animism and a series of other related dichotomies: nature/culture, human/non-human, body/mind and religion/secular in Japanese culture and everyday life.
  • Human-Machine Integration - focusing on the ‘brain interface machine (BIM)’ which was used to create a new physical and sensory (domestic) space and cognitive environment for human beings (smart home) along with the increasing use of information devices in everyday life (home robotics). 

Current academic Activities

  • Managing editor of Body & Society (Sage Publications, London)
  • Researcher and coordinator for the Theory Culture & Society (TCS) ‘New Encyclopaedia Project’.

Visiting Fellow

2007 April - 2008 March
Visiting research fellow in the Interfaculty Institute of Information Studies, University of Tokyo.

2010 December - 2011 January
Visiting research fellow in the Department of Japanese Studies, Gakushuin Women’s College, Tokyo

2011 August – 2011 September
Visiting scholar in the Department of Sociology, National University of Singapore  

Selected Presentations

2014 (July) ‘Body Image and Prosthetic Aesthetics’, in the session, Let’s Re-invent an Embodied Sociology, International Sociological Association, Yokohama, Japan.

2014 (June) ‘After Fukushima: The Question of Co-existence in Contemporary Architectural Tendencies in Japan’ at Cultural Typhoon, International Christian University, Tokyo, Japan.

 2014 (June) ‘Cultural Studies in Japan’, Invited Plenary Speaker, Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies Centre conference: ‘Birmingham Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies 50 Years On’, University of Birmingham, UK.

2014 (April) ‘After Fukushima: New Architectural Tendencies in Contemporary Japan,’ British Sociological Association Conference, University of Leeds, UK.

2013 (October) ‘The Meanings of Cookery: Everyday Life and Aesthetics in Meiji Japan’, International Conference of Asian Food Study, Zhejiang Gongshang University, Shaoxing, China.

2013 (August) ‘Japanese consumer culture and the development of the department store,’ Guest Lecture, The summer programme ‘Factory of Ideas’, University of Bahia, Salvador, Brazil.

2013 (April) ‘Body Image and Prosthetic Aesthetics in Paralympic Culture’ British Sociological Association Annual Conference, The Grand Connaught Rooms, London.

2012 (July) ‘Functional Food, Probiotics and Bodily Defence’, British Sociological Association Food Study Group Conference, British Library, London.

2012 (May) ‘The Department Store, Cinema and Modern Women’, Guest Lecture, Department of Comparative Studies, Shaanxi Normal University, Xi’an, China.

2012 (May) ‘Japanese Consumer Culture and the Urban Landscape’, Guest Lecture, Faculty of Humanities, International Business and Economics University, Beijing, China.

2012 (April) ‘Metabolism: Lessons from Japan for Sustainable Urban Design,’ British Sociological Association Annual Conference, University of Leeds, Leeds.

2011 (November) ‘The Cultural Politics of Ryukyu Cuisine: China and Satsuma Influences in the Development of Food Culture’ (co-presenter Mike Featherstone) 12th Symposium on Chinese Dietary Culture, Okinawa University, Okinawa, Japan.

2011 (September) ‘Architecture, the City and Urban Aesthetic Japanese Modernization and Cityscape’, Symposium on Property, Aestheticization and Global Cultural Studies, Shanghai International Studies University, Shanghai, China.

2011 (Aug) ‘Japanese Modernization and New Women, ’Guest Lecture, Faculty of Social Science, Department of Sociology, Postgraduate Programme, National University of Singapore.

2011 (April) ‘Dwelling Space: From ‘Smart Home’ to ‘IT Home’, British Sociological Association 60th Anniversary Conference, London School of Economics, London.

2011 (Jan) ‘Ethical Consumption and the Modern Consumer’, Workshop on Ethical Consumption, Gakushuin Women’s College, Tokyo.

2010 (August) ‘Women’s Magazines and the Dynamics of Knowledge-power in the Formation of Female Subjectivity in Japan,’ 5th International Conference on Interdisciplinary Social Science, University of Cambridge, Cambridge.

2010 (June) ‘Moving Image and Affect in Digital and Analog(ue) Animation,’ Affective Fabrics of Digital Cultures: Feelings, Technologies, Politics International Conference, University of Manchester.

2010 (April) ‘The Modern Girl and Male Intellectuals in Inter-war Japan’, British Sociological Association Annual Conference, Glasgow Caledonian University, Glasgow.

2010 (January) ‘Women’s Magazines, Practical Knowledge and Everyday Life in Early 20th Century Japan ‘ Media, Communication and Cultural Studies Association Conference, London School of Economics, London.

2009 (April) ‘The Reform of Everyday Life and Consumer Culture in the Early 20th Japan, The Challenge of Global Social Inquiry’, British Sociological Association Annual Conference, Cardiff City Hall, Cardiff.

2009 (April) ‘The World of Hayao Miyazaki – Studio Ghibli and Miyazaki Anime’, Annual Conference British Association of Japanese Studies, Chatham House, London.

2008 (July) ‘The Pleasure of Food: Women and the Emergence of Domestic Cooking in Early 20th Century Japan,’ British Sociological Association, Food Study Group Conference, British Library Conference Centre, London.

2006 (Nov) ‘Chinese Food in Britain: Consumer Culture and Taste’ (co-author, Mike Featherstone), The 9th Symposium on Chinese Dietary Culture, Foundation of Chinese Dietary Culture, Taihoku, Taiwan.

2006 (July) ‘Consumer Culture and the Emergence of the Modern Girl in Inter-war Japan’, Crossroads International Cultural Studies Conference, Bilgi University, Istanbul.

2006 (July) ‘Representing the Modern Girl: Japanese Consumer Culture in the Interwar Years,’ Seminar of the Institute of Social Science, University of Tokyo.

2005 (Nov) ‘Department Store, Cinema and the Modern Consumer: Women’s Dream Worlds and the New Japanese Woman, the Moga (Modern Girl),’ CHORD/HAGRI Workshop, Shopping, Retailing and Leisure, University of Wolverhampton.

2005 (Nov) ‘Japanese Food Culture and New Cultural Intermediary,’ Guest Lecture, Japanese Cultural Studies Module, Department of Media and Cultural Studies, Birkbeck College, University of London.

2005 (Sept) ‘The Rise of Consumer Culture in Japan: Westernization, Modernization and the Role of the Mitsukoshi Department Store in the Early 20th Century,’ British Association of Japanese Studies Conference, University of Kent.

2005 (July) ‘The New Encyclopedia Project: Developments and Prospects’, International Symposium, An Encyclopaedia for Democracy -The Framework for Democracy in Ubiquitous Information Society, University of Tokyo.

2004 (May) ‘Japanese Modernity in the Inter-war years: Consumer Culture and the Modern Girl,’ Symposium for Screen Studies, School of Advanced Studies and Screen Studies Group. Film: The First Global Vernacular? Birkbeck College, University of London.

2003 (Oct) Co-chair with Professor Shunya Yoshimi. ‘What is Global Knowledge,’ Symposium on the Politics of Global Knowledge in the Digital Information Society, University of Tokyo.

2003 (July) ‘Consumer Culture and the Modern Girl: the Rise of Department Store and the Formation of Gender Identity in Japan’, The Modern Girl Research Group, Ochanomizu Woman’s University, Tokyo.

1999 (July) ‘The Role of the Japanese Department Store and the Formation of Gender Identity in Japan: The Formation of ‘Good Wives’ and ‘Shop-Girls’ 1910-1930’ International Conference on Consumption and Representation, University of Plymouth.

1995 (June) ‘An Investigation of the Process of Media Effects Research for CATV in the City’, Conference of The Japan Society for Studies in Journalism and Mss Communication, Kwansei Gakuin University.

Selected Organization of Conferences, Workshops and Symposium

2014 (July) Chaired the session ‘Embodiment in Digital Society, New Perspectives in Social Time at International Sociological Association, Yokohama, Japan.

2008 (Sept) Workshop ‘Occidentalism and its Critiques,’ Institute of Oriental Culture, University of Tokyo, Tokyo (Member of organizing committee).

2007 (July) International Conference on Ubiquitous Media: Asian Transformation, The University of Tokyo (Member of organizing committee).

2005 (July) International Symposium, An Encyclopaedia for Democracy -The Framework for Democracy in Ubiquitous Information Society, University of Tokyo, Japan (Member of organizing committee).

2005 (July) Symposium on New Encyclopaedia Project, University of Tokyo (Member of organizing committee).

2003 (Oct) Conference on Knowledge Formation in the Age of Globalization, Kyoto Bukkyo University, Kyoto, Japan (Translator of English, keynote lecture).

2003 (Oct) Symposium on the Politics of Global Knowledge in the Digital Information Society, University of Tokyo (Member of organizing committee).

2003 (Aug) Colloquium on Global Knowledge and the Problem of Translation, Bass Management Centre, Nottingham Trent University, Nottingham (Member of organizing committee).

2002 (Oct) Colloquium on Global Knowledge and Global Education, Waseda University, Tokyo, Japan (Member of organizing committees and translator of English presentations).

2002 (Oct) ‘The Problem of Ethics and the Development of a Global Public Sphere,’ Public Lecture, Bukkyo University, Kyoto, Japan (Member of organizing committee and translator of English for keynote lecture).

2002 (Aug) International Colloquium on Problematizing Global Knowledge, Nottingham Trent University, Nottingham, UK (Member of organizing committee).

2001 (March) The New Encyclopaedia Project, Kyoto Bukkyo University, Kyoto, Japan (Member of organizing committees and translator of English presentation).

2000 (Feb) ‘The Encyclopaedia Project,’ Waseda University, Tokyo, Japan (Member of organizing committee).

1999 (March) Conference on Globalization, Kyoto Bunkyo University, Kyoto, Japan (Member of organizing committee and translator of English presentations). 

Refereeing/Assessment

Journal article refereed for: British Journal of Sociology, Theory Culture & Society, Sociology, Body & Society and Subjectivity.

Research Grant Proposal refereed for Israel Science Foundation.

Book Proposal refereed for University of Hawai’i Press.

Book Proposal refereed for Bloomsbury

Member of Academic Associations:

British Sociological Association

British Sociological Association, Food Studies Group

The Media, Communication and Cultural Studies Association (MeCCSA)

The Japan Society for Studies in Journalism and Mass Communication

The Japan Sociological Society

The Kanto Sociological Society

Japan Association for Cultural Economics

Japan Lifology Society

Publications

Book

Women and Consumer Culture: the Department Store, Modernity and Everyday Life in Early Twentieth Century Japan
Tamari, Tomoko. 2016. Women and Consumer Culture: the Department Store, Modernity and Everyday Life in Early Twentieth Century Japan. London: Ashgate Publisher.

Book Section

'The Culture of Shopping’
Tamari, Tomoko. 2009. 'The Culture of Shopping’. In: S Inoue and K Ito, eds. Sociology Basics, Fashion and Everyday Culture. Vol.7. UNSPECIFIED, pp. 137-146.

Article

Body Image and Prosthetic Aesthetics
Tamari, Tomoko. 31 March 2017. Body Image and Prosthetic Aesthetics. Body & Society, ISSN 1357-034X

The Department Store in Early 20th Century Japan: Luxury, Aestheticization and Modern Life
Tamari, Tomoko. 13 December 2016. The Department Store in Early 20th Century Japan: Luxury, Aestheticization and Modern Life. Luxury, 3(1-2), pp. 83-103. ISSN 2051-1817

The Phenomenology of Architecture: A short Introduction of Juhani Pallasmaa
Tamari, Tomoko. 13 December 2016. The Phenomenology of Architecture: A short Introduction of Juhani Pallasmaa. Body & Society, 23(1), pp. 1-4. ISSN 1357034X

Metabolism: Utopian Urbanism and the Japanese Modern Architecture Movement
Tamari, Tomoko. 16 September 2014. Metabolism: Utopian Urbanism and the Japanese Modern Architecture Movement. Theory, Culture & Society, pp. 1-25. ISSN 0263-2764

‘Metabolism: the Emergence of Modern Architecture Movement and the Rediscovery of a Japanese Aesthetic’
Tamari, Tomoko. 2012. ‘Metabolism: the Emergence of Modern Architecture Movement and the Rediscovery of a Japanese Aesthetic’. China Book Review, 9, pp. 58-65. ISSN 1674-912X

Consumer Culture and Chinese Food in Britain
Tamari, Tomoko. 2007. Consumer Culture and Chinese Food in Britain. Jiangxi Social Sciences, 8, pp. 234-244.

Reflections on the Development of Cultural Studies in Japan
Tamari, Tomoko. 14 December 2006. Reflections on the Development of Cultural Studies in Japan. Theory Culture & Society, 23(7-8), pp. 293-304. ISSN 0263-2764

Cultural Studies in Japan: An Interview with Shunya Yoshimi
Tamari, Tomoko. December 2006. Cultural Studies in Japan: An Interview with Shunya Yoshimi. Theory Culture & Society, 23(7-8), pp. 305-314. ISSN 0263-2764

Rise of the Department Store and the Aestheticization of Everyday Life in Early 20th Century Japan
Tamari, Tomoko. 2006. Rise of the Department Store and the Aestheticization of Everyday Life in Early 20th Century Japan. International Journal of Japanese Sociology, 15(1), pp. 99-118. ISSN 0918-7545

'Chinese Food in Britain: Consumer Culture and Taste’
Tamari, Tomoko. 2005. 'Chinese Food in Britain: Consumer Culture and Taste’. Ajia Yugaku (Intriguing Asia), 77, pp. 128-139.

‘A Study of the Socio-cultural Role of the Department Store and the Formation of Gender Identity in Japan: the Saleswomen in Modern Urban Culture and the Rise of Department Store,’
Tamari, Tomoko. 2000. ‘A Study of the Socio-cultural Role of the Department Store and the Formation of Gender Identity in Japan: the Saleswomen in Modern Urban Culture and the Rise of Department Store,’. Japan Association for Cultural Economics, 2(2), pp. 71-84.

‘The Social Roles of the Department Store in Japan: the History of Way of Seeing and the Formation of the Modern Consumer,’
Tamari, Tomoko. 1999. ‘The Social Roles of the Department Store in Japan: the History of Way of Seeing and the Formation of the Modern Consumer,’. Japan Association for Cultural Economics, 1(4), pp. 53-63.

Conference or Workshop Item

The Meanings of Cookery: Everyday Life and Aesthetics in Meiji Japan
Tamari, Tomoko. 2013. 'The Meanings of Cookery: Everyday Life and Aesthetics in Meiji Japan'. In: International Conference of Asian Food Study. Zhej iang Gongshang University, China.

The Cultural Politics of Ryukyu Cuisine: China and Satsuma Influences in the Development of Food Culture
Tamari, Tomoko and Featherstone, Mike. 2011. 'The Cultural Politics of Ryukyu Cuisine: China and Satsuma Influences in the Development of Food Culture'. In: The Proceedings of The 12th Symposium on Chinese Dietary Culture. Taipei, Taiwan, Province of China.

Chinese Food in Britain: Consumer Culture and Taste
Tamari, Tomoko and Featherstone, Mike. 2006. 'Chinese Food in Britain: Consumer Culture and Taste'. In: The 9th Symposium on Chinese Dietary Culture. Taihoku, Taiwan, Province of China.