During this program, almost all the experiences were new and impressive for me and also made me think about the meaning of studying abroad. Since I used to live in Vietnam for few years, I’m interested in understanding different culture and I know that it’s better to comprehend their morals and values in local place than listening and reading from some articles. Therefore, I was really looking forward to studying American culture, which is not I studied only from textbook and lecture in Japan, but from local professors in William and Mary University. In fact, every lecture was meaningful and I could see the different perspective from lecture in Japan. Races issues got me think a lot in particular. Each lecture that I took was mentioned about different topics by professor, but when we discuss each lecture seriously in a discussion class, almost all the topic even its topic is food or something that seemingly unrelated to race was connected to human beings, especially race problems. Once, I studied and watched some films focused on during the period of slavery, so I supposed to think myself that I have much knowledge about the racial things. However, taking some lectures, I realized that my knowledge about racialism was just a part of it, and the reality was deeper and more controversial. Moreover, the deadly incident in Charlottesville show me the evidence that the racial issue is biggest matter that still remains. Though it took almost 150 years since Emancipation Proclamation was carried out in 1863 by 16st president Abraham Lincoln, the idea and scars of racial discrimination have not been solved and I think it will last forever in any figure. Therefore, we can’t talk about American history without thinking about racism. Based on lecture and discussion especially during this program, at first on this essay, I want to share my thoughts about racial issue. First, some people say that it is difficult for Japanese to understand American racial issue because of there is no serious, certain discrimination in Japanese community. However, actually there used to have the system of social standing segregation in Japan which is remarkable in Edo period, about 400 years ago. At that time, the class was separated into four and became stratified society which depend on their job’s type. Then, what made the segregation away from latest Japanese society. I came up two main reasons that explain this, one is due to time that has elapsed and the other is racial consciousness. As things change due to time, system and environment that cover it also changes because of time. One of the big reason that disappearing of discrimination is too old to remain. Of course, generally, it gets so much time to change their behavior after amending something. There is record that indicate that there has segregation issue though already carried out the emancipation order. However, passing 400 years, people don’t care about much. Comparing to American society, it may take more time not to care about their racial. Additionally, the reason why racial issue remains is due to the race diversity. Now in Japan, we don’t have abuse segregation because we can’t distinguish their working class. However, in U.S, people who used to have racial segregation because of their looking the color of their skin, so despite the time passed, the discrimination is said it is difficult to disappear even in the future. I strongly hope that America become completely equal no matter what their skin color.
As you can see my consideration, this program made me think about variety issues and recognize that how important to think about it myself.
And the other and the best thing that I was glad to participate in this program is meeting and talking with wonderful students. I’m sure that there was no other program to get to know each other so well. Studying American culture and history, since I think the best way to know culture and history is learning from people who live there. This is because it might be different from another place where it is not local. Actually, through this program I understood its difference especially racial issue as I mentioned above. Therefore, I certainly could spend my wonderful time by talking and having discussion.
Also, thanks to kind and friendly character’s PAs and CIs and Keio students, I could spend amazing two weeks. In the beginning, I couldn’t imagine that spending such a wonderful time and getting know each other so much. I’m sure that I can speak English much better by the time we meet again.