November 07, 2021 at 07:12AM

“Cultural Appropriation” is a sensitive & difficult issue to discuss. Whenever I talk about it, not only do I lose many followers here, but also I receive pretty angry comments. Some think as if I am going to take away something from them. Of course, I am NOT. In fact, the opposite. I am just sharing stories to avoid C/A because it will be more enjoyable. Not knowing is okay. Knowing it yet ignoring (not acknowledging) it is the problem.

As my personal note to you, let me simplify the C/A issue in Sashiko. If you worry about appropriating the culture of Sashiko and care to read/listen to the stories, then don’t worry. If you think you are appreciating the culture of Sashiko, then please worry if you may appropriate the culture by reading the stories “as if”. The Boundary Line between “Appropriation” and “Appreciation” is clear to me. It is “acknowledgement” (and hopefully caring). For that, no action is needed: I want everyone to enjoy Sashiko. I do. But I want them to enjoy the Sashiko we practice – not the Sashiko “modified (filtered)” by someone non-Japanese for their profit & convenience.

This is my personal voice. I do NOT talk on behalf of other cultures & their C/A issues. Some feel more severe pain than I do, so please do not minimize their words. My goal is not to cause a “split”. It is the opposite. Since Sashiko in English is causing the split, I would like you to be part of my challenge: to unite them into one again. For that, your action & support is very much appreciated.





先日の配信でも力が込もった思いなのですが、刺し子や襤褸に関して思いを発信する中で、僕は決して「変化」を否定している訳ではありません。(寧ろ刺し子職人さんからは煙たがれるレベルで変化を望んでいたし、今も望んでいます)。文化は流動的なものだし、変化をしない文化は、文化の本質ではないですし。ただ、その変化は「日本人の、あるいは日本に興味や関心がある人の」ものであって欲しいのです。「日本?どうでもいいよ。刺し子はクールだから」という、文化背景を置き去りにする変化が嫌なんです。

僕は日本文化が大好きです。紅葉を見て、白い雪を連想する。白い雪は刺し子を思い出させる。米国に移住しましたが、僕の原点は日本です。海に囲まれた島組&200年余の鎖国という、国境を争う国ではなかなか得られなかった時間で、内に入り培ってきた文化です。良いも悪いも含め、やっぱり大切なんです。刺し子が変化するのであれば、その独特な僕が好きな日本文化を土台にして欲しい。願いはそれだけなのです。

#Sashiko #JapaneseSashiko #刺し子 #日本人の刺し子


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