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2018-2019 Osaka University SHIBA Ryotaro Memorial Academic Lecture held


On Thursday, November 8, the Osaka University SHIBA Ryotaro Memorial Academic Lecture was held at Osaka University Hall on the Toyonaka Campus.

This lecture is held ever year and retraces the accomplishments of SHIBA Ryotaro, an author and graduate of the Osaka University of Foreign Studies (now Osaka University). This year marked the 21st lecture in this series, with some 270 individuals in attendance. The topic for this year's lecture was "People and Castles in the Literature of SHIBA Ryotaro."

The lecture began with the reading of one of Dr. Shiba's works, "Osakajokoen Station," and following this, President NISHIO Shojiro, as host of the lecture, greeted attendees based on this year's topic.

President NISHIO Shojiro greets attendees as host of the lecture

Following this, in part 1 of the lecture, a "BiblioBattle," in which students discussed their selected works by SHIBA Ryotaro, was held. The theme for this year's BiblioBattle was "Portrait of a Restoration," and as such, the novels introduced by students were all related to the Meiji Restoration, such as "Shinsengumi Keppuroku" and "Moeyo Ken."  The 5 students who made it through the preliminary rounds of this BiblioBattle introduced their selected works (novels) and held a Q&A session. The audience was then asked to vote for which novel they would like to read the most, and the votes of the roughly 270 individuals in attendance were tallied to see which student was the winner.

A scene from the BiblioBattle in part 1


In part 2, guest lecturer and castle archeologist Dr. SENDA Yoshihiro gave a lecture entitled "Castles in the Literature of SHIBA Ryotaro." In his lecture, Dr. Senda spoke about the shift of fortification methods to a more western style from the late Edo period and the beginning of the Meiji period with a focusing on Fort Goryokaku [Western style citadel], which makes an appearance in SHIBA Ryotaro's works, while also introducing construction of European castles of the same period.

Dr. SENDA Yoshihiro gives a lecture in part 2

Finally, the results of the BiblioBattle were announced, with NAKAYAMA Atsuki (4th year, School of Foreign Studies) taking 1st place with his introduction of "Kashin," and IMAZAKA Tomohiko (2nd year, School of Letters) taking 2nd place with his introduction of "Saigo no Shogun." At the award ceremony, President Nishio presented the winners with commemorative plaques and Sakuyakai Chairman OHMIZU Isamu presented the supplementary prizes.

From left: President Nishio, 2nd place winner IMAZAKA Tomohiko, 1st place winner NAKAYAMA Atsuki, Chairman Ohmizu)

Five BiblioBattle entrants with President Nishio, Dr. Senda, and Chairman Ohmizu

This lecture was held in cooperation with the SHIBA Ryotaro Memorial Financial Group, Sakuyakai (Osaka University School of Foreign Studies/Osaka University of Foreign Studies Alumni Association), and Sankei Shimbun.

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