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Monday, April 01, 2019, 10:30 - 11:30


Shigeji Ogura,Associate Professor, National Museum of Japanese History

Language: The speech and Q & A will be in Japanese with English interpretation.

The Japanese news media is abuzz with talk of "gengo," the name to be assigned to the start on May 1 of the reign of Emperor Naruhito.

Name of the new era is to be announced on April 1 by Chief Cabinet Minister Yoshihide Suga. He will present the two-character name in front of TV cameras and will henceforth be associated by the public with the announcement. Assigning era names to coincide with the reign of an emperor goes back in modern times to 1868 when Emperor Meiji ascended to the throne. The announcement of each new era name since then has been met with much excitement and speculation as to what will be the spirit of the new era. The choice of the name reveals much about the expectations Japanese in various sectors of society have about the future on the ascent of a new emperor. For example, the present era name, Heisei, which coincides with Emperor Akihito's thirty-year reign, contained expectations of lasting peace. But era names are not without controversy. At least one major Japanese newspaper refuses to use them, insisting on reporting all events according to the Western calendar.

Shigeji Ogura, Associate Professor at the National Museum of Japanese History, will come to the club on April 1 to explain the history and significance of gengo. No doubt his speech will be an era-defining event.

*After the press conference, there will be a public viewing of the New Imperial Era Name announcement on the screen at the main bar for FCCJ members.

Doors open for TV crew at 09:45, For all others at 10:00, still cameras included.

Please reserve in advance, 3211-3161 or on the website (still & TV cameras inclusive). Reservations and cancellations are not complete without confirmation.

Livestreaming of this press conference is available on our website( ).

Professional Activities Committee

Apr 01 19 PC Shigeji Ogura024


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