December 06, 2010
NOTE: Keep checking this page for photos and updates about the trip.
More than a dozen Knox College students and faculty members are spending two weeks in Japan as part of the Japan Term interdisciplinary program, which focuses on the history, philosophy, and language of that country.
They will stay in Tokyo, Kyoto, and other Japanese cities. The Knox group left for Japan on Nov. 29 and will return on Dec. 15. See what Knox faculty and students had to say before the trip.
UPDATE: Dec. 15 (afternoon) -- Take a look at a few more photos from the 2010 Japan Term trip.
The group got a close-up view of the gate of Itsukushima Shrine in the Inland Sea. While still in Kyoto, they visited Ginkakuji -- also known as The Silver Pavilion.
Before bidding farewell to Japan, the students and faculty posed for this final group photo at the National Olympic Center in Tokyo.
UPDATE: Dec. 15 (morning) -- Knox College's Japan Term students, along with faculty, are on their way back home now.
Before packing their bags and boarding the plane, though, they donned kimonos and posed for this group photo at Kinkakuji, the Temple of the Golden Pavilion, in Kyoto.
While in kimonos, they walked through city streets -- attracting attention, obviously -- and conversed in Japanese with passers-by.
The kimono is "a historically significant mode of dress, important as both a form of high artistic value and as an example of fine craft work tradition," according to Professor Michael Schneider.
UPDATE: Dec. 10 -- The 2010 Japan Term travelers score "a major coup," to use Professor Michael Schneider's term, when they get a clear view of Mount Fuji from the Shinkansen (high-speed train) between Tokyo and Kyoto.
In recent days, they also have visited two ancient Japanese capitals -- Nara and Kyoto -- and several Buddhist temples there. Nara was Japan's first permanent capital city.
Before leaving for Kyoto, the Knox group stopped by a Tokyo museum that is devoted to the preservation of farmhouses. For a totally different look at Tokyo, here's a nighttime view of the Shinjuku area of the city.
UPDATE: Dec. 6 -- Students are becoming increasingly familiar with their surroundings, and they are learning to make their way around Tokyo. Their most recent stops include the Edo-Tokyo Museum, which traces the history of Tokyo back to its origins as a small fishing village in the 1600s. Next up: Kyoto.
UPDATE: Dec. 2 -- The Knox group encounters mild and sunny weather, with temperatures around 60 degrees Fahrenheit, during the first days in Tokyo. The photo at the top of this page shows the group posing at the entrance to the Imperial Palace, which marks the center of Tokyo.
Knox students and faculty also visited a statue of popular folk hero Saigo Takamori, the subject of the book The Last Samurai: The Life and Battles of Saigo Takamori by Mark Ravina. The book later was adapted into a feature film.