Philip Seaton degree icon

Professor

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Research Faculty of Media and Communication, Hokkaido University

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Feel free to contact me at:

seaton@imc.hokudai.ac.jp

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Contents Tourism and Pop Culture Pilgrimage

Welcome to the homepage for my class Aspects of Japan I: Contents Tourism and Pop Culture Pilgrimage.

Tokyo Disneyland.

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Syllabus and Course Outline

Course Goals: To research the phenomenon of contents tourism, defined as tourism partially or fully motivated by engagement with popular culture such as film, manga, anime and television dramas.

To achieve, through practical learning in groups, an understanding of quantitative and qualitative research methods in tourism studies. The course divides into four blocks of three classes: 1) analyzing contents, 2) fans, 3) analyzing tourism data, and 4) the contents business. Each block intermingles short lectures, group work, class discussion and presentations.

Week 1 (2 October): Introduction

Course Introduction: What is “contents tourism”? Hearing students’ experiences of contents tourism. Complete this Contents Tourism Questionnaire

 

Online materials:

Katsuyuki Nishikawa, Philip Seaton, Takayoshi Yamamura (2015) The Theory and Practice of Contents Tourism (pdf download).

 

Japan Forum Special Edition (27.1)

Philip Seaton and Takayoshi Yamamura, “Japanese Popular Culture and Contents Tourism” (open access).

Takeshi Okamoto, “Otaku Tourism and the Anime Pilgrimage Phenomenon in Japan” (open access).

Akiko Sugawa-Shimada, “Rekijo, Pilgrimage and ‘Pop-Spiritualism’: Pop-Culture-Induced Tourism of/for Young Women” (use HU library).

Takayoshi Yamamura, “Contents Tourism and Local Community Response: Lucky Star and Collaborative Anime-induced Tourism in Washimiya” (open access).

Philip Seaton, “Taiga Dramas and Tourism: Historical Contents as Sustainable Tourist Resources” (open access).

 

International Journal of Contents Tourism (read any article). The articles published in Volume 1 2016 are collected together here: IJCT-Vol.1 2016

 

Sue Beeton, Takayoshi Yamamura and Philip Seaton, ‘The Mediatisation of Culture: Japanese contents tourism and popular culture’ in Jo-Anne Lester and Caroline Scarles (eds) Mediating the Tourist Experience: From Brochures to Virtual Encounters. Farnham (Surrey, UK), Ashgate, 2013, pp. 139-54.

 

Philip Seaton, Takayoshi Yamamura, Akiko Sugawa-Shimada, and Kyungjae Jang, Contents Tourism in Japan: Pilgrimages to “Sacred Sites” of Popular Culture.

Week 2 (16 October): Analyzing Contents 1

Lecture: (Pre-watching) Introductory lecture about heritage and/or contents tourism (45 mins). The lecture materials are here: 171016 Contents tourism lecture
Group work: Start watching The Last Samurai.

Week 3 (23 October): Analyzing Contents 2

Group work: Continue watching The Last Samurai.
Discussion: Survey (Socrative) and discussion about anticipated patterns of contents tourism.

Week 4 (30 October): Analyzing Contents 3

Group work: Finish watching The Last Samurai.
Lecture: (Post-watching) Visiting the sites of The Last Samurai.

Week 5 (6 November): Fans 1

Warm up: Thinking about fan behaviors. Materials are here: Analyzing Fan Behaviour
Mini-Lecture: Questionnaire design, The basics. Materials are here.
Group work: Divide into 5 groups of 4 or 5 people. Designing a survey relating to fan behavior among Hokudai students.
Homework: Prepare a first draft of your survey. Bring 20 copies of it next week so that you can do a pilot survey in class.

Week 6 (13 November): Fans 2

Pilot Survey: Distribute your pilot survey to classmates.
Group work: Collect the surveys and analyze the data. Discuss any necessary revisions to your survey.
Homework: Conduct the survey on students outside of this class. Collect and analyze the data.

Week 7 (20 November): Fans 3

Preparation Time: 30 minutes to finalize your presentations.
Presentations: 5 groups, 10 minutes per group. This includes 4 minutes of presentation, 4 minutes of Q&A, and 2 minutes of change over between groups (total 50 minutes).
Wrap up: Analysis of results and gathering information via questionnaires.

Week 8 (27 November): Reading Week

Group Work: Read and discuss in class key academic literature.

Week 9 (4 December): Analyzing tourism data 1

Interactive Lecture:
Measuring levels and impacts of contents tourism. What general information is available? Let’s look at The Statistics BureauJNTOJTB Tourism ResearchJapan Tourism Agency. How can we research impacts? Issues encountered during research for “Taiga Dramas and Tourism”. And let’s look at a typical set of sites in Hakodate: Hakodate Citystatistics page

Group Work Task
Divide into groups of 4 or 5 people. It can be the same groups as last time, or a different group. But, there should be at least one or two Japanese speakers (Japanese students or MJSP students etc.) in each group.

Using a combination of tourism promotion pages, municipal/prefectural statistics pages, and fan websites etc., demonstrate through the use of statistics the existence of contents tourism in a particular place in Japan at a particular time. Your investigations can be built around a particular city, or a franchise, or a famous person, or a location. Your task this week is to identify the example of tourism you want to investigate and start data collection.
Group 1: Ano Hana, Chichibu (Saitama)
Group 2: Kimi no na wa (Hida city)
Group 3: Ama chan (Kuji city)
Group 4: Nobunaga Concerto (Nagoya)
Group 5: Gin no Saji (Hokkaido)

Homework:
Continue collecting statistical and other data relevant to your project. Build your story about the connections between the contents (narratives, locations, characters, creative elements) and the tourism.

Hint:
Useful keywords in Japanese include ロケ地、フィルムコミッション、and for statistics、[city name]+観光+統計。The usual word for number of tourists is 入れ込み客数。

Week 10 (11 December): Analyzing tourism data 2

Work in your groups analyzing the data you have collected. Start preparing your group powerpoint presentations.

Week 11 (18 December): Analyzing tourism data 3

Preparation Time: 30 minutes to finalize your presentations.
Presentations: 5 groups, 10 minutes per group. This includes 4 minutes of presentation, 4 minutes of Q&A, and 2 minutes of change over between groups (total 50 minutes).
Wrap up: Final comments.

Week 12 (25 December): Reading Week

Reading literature in preparation for the final block of classes.

Week 13 (15 January): The contents business 1

Lecture: How businesses make money through contents tourism.
Group Work: Investigations into a corporation active in the contents business.
Presentations: Results of the corporation surveys.

Week 14 (22 January): The contents business 2

Lecture: How businesses make money through contents tourism.
Group Work: Investigations into a corporation active in the contents business.
Presentations: Results of the corporation surveys.

Week 15 (29 January): The contents business 3

Lecture: How businesses make money through contents tourism.
Group Work: Investigations into a corporation active in the contents business.
Presentations: Results of the corporation surveys.

Submission of final research papers.

Assessment

Students are assessed on attendance and their contributions to class discussion (30%), their class presentations (30%) and a 1000-word report based on their investigations during the term (40%).