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Deutsches Institut für Japanstudien

Hybrid lecture by Barbara Holthus on pets in contemporary Japan

© u:japan lecture

The accelerated interest in pets in Japan has not started with the pandemic but certainly has been intensified by it. In response to more than two years of physical distancing and “self-restraint”, many Japanese have turned to pets as “substitute” family members that helped to fill the void in human-human interaction. The growing popularity of pets in Japan, together with the accompanying normative, social, and legal changes regarding pet ownership within Japanese society are the focus of the presentation Furry Companions: Pets in Contemporary Japan by DIJ sociologist Barbara Holthus. Drawing on data from interviews, participant observation, publications by the Ministry of the Environment, the National Police Agency, and media, Barbara’s presentation will highlight the embeddedness and changing role of pets in Japanese society. Registration for this hybrid event on November 24 at the University of Vienna and online here