2009年03月11日

Please Support the Student Sit-in at the University of the Ryukyus in Okinawa

Please Support the Student Sit-in at the University of the Ryukyus in Okinawa
March 9, 2009

The authorities at the University of the Ryukyus in Okinawa, Japan,
have decided to lay off its adjunct language faculty members and
massively reduce the number of foreign language courses without fully
disclosing why such policies were necessary. Alarmed by the
situation, we, the students, have demanded direct negotiations with
the university officials twice in the past. But the university
dismissed our first demand through writing, and did not even respond
to our second request. The university officials thus repeatedly
failed to create a democratic forum where they and the students could
openly discuss the issues and seek possible solutions.

As the students who have studied justice, freedom, human rights, and
resistance and have been actively applying them to real life
conditions, we decided to occupy our campus and voice our resistance
against these undemocratically chosen, unforgivable policies. Sit-in
has been an important method of self-determination that has been
inventively practiced and carefully passed down by the generations of
people here in Okinawa in their post-WWII struggles. Sit-in has taken
roots in Okinawa because it has allowed the people to directly create
a space in which they could openly speak about what a better future
meant for each of them when they were living amidst the presence of
massive military forces. We thus urge the university to abolish the
so-called "new language curriculum" by learning from and drawing upon
the method of the resistance historically developed here in Okinawa:
sit-in.

The current sit-in aims to create a situation in which the university
authorities must genuinely acknowledge the flawed and problematic
nature of its so-called "new language curriculum." If the university
still exists for us, (as stipulated in its Mission Statement), then
we, the students, need to not only critique but change the current
critical situation in which our own university does not even
acknowledge the concerns and demands of its students.

This situation is not the sole concern of the students and adjunct
faculty members at the University of the Ryukyus. While the
occupation of campus began as a critical response to the
neoliberalization of our university and the attendant impoverishment
of our educational program, our sit-in also aims to problematize other
related issues such as the breakdown of our "autonomous" university
system, crisis of educational system within the Okinawa Prefecture at
large, and unemployment among the residents of Okinawa.

"The new curriculum" has no legitimate basis to justify itself and
benefits no one on campus and in the society, as has been made evident
by now at various meetings and through media reports. But it takes
much courage for us, the students, to express our demand to abolish
"the new curriculum" on the campus of the University of the Ryukyus
where all types of harassment take place on a regular basis. To add
to this, most tenured faculty members remain silent until today. This
is why we sincerely ask for your help because it is difficult to
create "the common"or the communal space in our situation now.

Please join our fight to abolish "the new language curriculum." We
welcome your participation through various means available:
participation in our sit-in, donation, media coverage, and so on.
Your support and participation is much appreciated.


Concerned Undergraduate Students at the University of the Ryukyus
posted by ルーちゃん at 00:56| 沖縄 ☀| Comment(1) | 声明 | このブログの読者になる | 更新情報をチェックする
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北海道札幌にある藤女子大学の教員です。GMLのメールで琉大で座り込みが敢行されていることを知りました。この語学カリキュラムのことをみたとき、咄嗟に伊波普猷のことを想起しました。たしか英語問題で、やはりストライキがあったと思います。琉大当局のやり方は、伝統的な植民地主義とつながっているのです。しかも、授業料を払っている学生にたいして運営についての疑問に一切ことようとしない役人の権威主義的な姿勢は、まさに植民地統治そのものです。持続的な闘争を支援します。
Posted by 丸山隆司 at 2009年03月12日 10:43
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