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Changing heart (beats): From japanese identity and nostalgia to Taiko for citizens of the Earth

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Chapter Summary

The opening photographic image showed two nearly naked taiko drummers from the group Kodō hitting a huge drum in a natural setting, with land meeting water meeting sky, as the world met a new day at the crack of dawn. This chapter begins with three vignettes, spread over a twenty year period, that reflect the author's own journey into a knowledge about taiko and the taiko group Kodō. The vignettes begins to reflect the shifting identity statements taiko has been used to express; Japanese identity within Japan, an Asian, mixed, or hybrid heritage identity outside Japan, and finally a more universal identity as human beings, or citizens of the earth. In many cases, Taiko is an affirmation of an identity of Japanese descent outside of Japan, and of Asian heritage more generally.

Keywords: Japanese identity; Kodō; photographic image; taiko



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