Japan Adrift Without Moral Mission, by Steven C. Clemons [deleted, sorry]


In a letter dated 25 April 1995, U.S. Ambassador to Japan Walter F. Mondale wrote to JPRI Board Member Ivan Hall expressing serious concern about the poor treatment by Japan's Ministry of Education of long-term foreign lecturers, gaikokujin kyoshi, at Japan's national universities. Intellectual exchange with Japan is largely a one-way street which Hall has already outlined in JPRI Working Paper No. 3, Academic Apartheid in Japan, and JPRI Working Paper No. 9, Academic Apartheid Revisited. This matter is of continuing concern and deserves the attention of those who wish to establish reciprocity in international exchange and challenge Japan's cartels of the mind. Segments of Ambassador Mondale's letter to Ivan Hall follow:

It was a pleasure to meet with you and the delegation of foreign lecturers. I only wish it had been under better circumstances. As I shared with the group, I am concerned about the recent and impending dismissals of long-term foreign lecturers at Japanese national universities. I am particularly sympathetic to the situation of those teachers so close to retirement.
. . .In addition to the press release which we produced immediately following our meeting, we sent a letter to the Director of the Ministry of Education's Higher Education Bureau asking for clarification of Japanese government policy regarding the employment of foreign lecturers. We have also been in touch with the British Council, the German Embassy and the German Academic Exchange Service regarding this issue. As you know, I have spoken publicly about the subject as well, including in a presentation I gave at the Asahi Shimbun last Tuesday.
I am a strong proponent of the value and importance of academic exchange of faculty and students in maintaining a strong and sound relationship. Therefore I was very disappointed to hear that a number of these foreign lecturers will not be replaced. It is in both of our best interests to encourage and welcome foreign faculty and students to our campuses.
I remain interested and concerned.

Walter F. Mondale

(click here to see the second and final update on this issue from JPRI)

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