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CJS Thursday Lecture Series | The Anatomy of Loneliness: Suicide, Social Connection, and the Search for Relational Meaning in Contemporary Japan

Chikako Ozawa-de Silva, Associate Professor of Anthropology, Emory University
Thursday, February 10, 2022
12:00-1:30 PM
Room 1010 (and virtual) Weiser Hall Map
Loneliness has been increasingly recognized as one of the greatest public health threat and this talk examines what is and is not loneliness, conditions of the “lonely society” and the role of culture in loneliness. Based on my long-term ethnographic studies, I point to how society itself can exacerbate experiences of loneliness. One of the most important messages of this talk is that the anatomy of loneliness is not the anatomy of a single individual, but of a type of society.

Chikako Ozawa-de Silva, D.Phil., is an Associate Professor of Anthropology at Emory University. She came to Emory after serving as a Visiting Research Fellow at Harvard University’s Department of Social Medicine and as a Post-Doctoral Fellow at the University of Chicago. She is a NEH (National Endowment for the Humanities) grant recipient and a Mind and Life Contemplative Studies Fellowship (The John Templeton Foundation) recipient. Her academic vision is to contribute to cross-cultural understandings of health, illness and well-being by bringing Western and Asian perspectives on the mind-body, religion, medicine, and therapy into fruitful dialogue. Her publications include two monographs, The Anatomy of Loneliness: Suicide, Social Connection and the Search for Relational Meaning in Contemporary Japan (University of California Press, 2021) and Psychotherapy and Religion in Japan: The Japanese Introspection Practice of Naikan (Routledge, 2006), as well as a co-edited special issue “Toward an Anthropology of Loneliness” in Transcultural Psychiatry (57:5, 2020, co-edited with Michelle Parsons), and over twenty peer-reviewed articles and book chapters on psychotherapeutic practice, suicide, the mind-body relationship and Tibetan medicine. For the past ten years her research has focused on loneliness, empathy, meaning-making, subjectivity and resilience, particularly among populations at risk for suicide, in situations of domestic violence, and in prison, in Japan and the US.

Please note: This lecture will be offered in person on the University of Michigan Ann Arbor campus at 1010 Weiser Hall (500 Church Street) and will be simultaneously available via Zoom webinar. Zoom registration here: https://umich.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_LyqVgwMITPauP0OLzL-4Sg

This event is free and open to the public, but registration is required if you intend to participate virtually. Once you've registered, the joining information will be sent to your email. Webinar registration link to be announced. The Center for Japanese Studies will follow state, local, and University of Michigan guidelines for in-person events.

If there is anything we can do to make this event accessible to you, please contact us. Please be aware that advance notice is necessary as some accommodations may require more time for the university to arrange.
Building: Weiser Hall
Event Type: Lecture / Discussion
Tags: Anthropology, Asia, Japan, Public Health
Source: Happening @ Michigan from Center for Japanese Studies, International Institute, Asian Languages and Cultures

International Institute Programming

The International Institute’s centers sponsor numerous conferences, lectures, exhibits, and cultural performances throughout the year. These events are designed to educate the university community and the public about global issues and inspire discussion and dialogue. 

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