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Faculty Spotlight: Beth Bridgeman, Toyoko Miwa, and Louise Smith

Japan Foundation Grant Announced
Three Antioch College faculty members have received a $24,000 grant from the Japan Foundation. The grant is offered to support institutions “that execute proposals designed to maintain and advance the infrastructural scale of Japanese Studies at their institution.”
Building on the success of the Antioch College Ohayo-Ohio Japanese Symposium in 2016, Toyoko Miwa Osborne, instructor of Japanese, Beth Bridgeman, Instructor of Cooperative Education, and Louise Smith, Associate Professor of Performance, Antioch College will offer Ohayo-Ohio II: New Opportunities for Cultural Engagement, Building Foundation, “HIYAKU”. It will include Japanese cultural workshops and lectures for our students, faculty, and the community and highlight the work of Antioch College alumni working in the fields of kyogen, butoh, washi and sado (chado).
Miwa-Osborne will offer an “Orizuru” symposium, bringing the film’s director and a panel of collaborators to discuss the making of this film, which tells the story behind Sadako and the Paper Cranes, and the bombing of Hiroshima. Smith will bring visiting artists and alumni Abel Coehlo, Butoh performer, and Dr. Julie Iezzi, theatre professor and kyogen performer, to offer a variety of workshops and performances. Bridgeman will bring several additional Antioch alumni and artists from Japan and the U.S. whose careers in Japan or Japanese culture were informed by the experiential education they received at Antioch College.  Kyoto-based Richard Milgrim, a tea ceramicist and tea master, will perform a tea ceremony and lead a discussion and demonstration of his tea ceramics process. Chiba, Japan-based Everett Brown, a photojournalist, organic farmer and inn-keeper, will offer a lecture from his upcoming book on the “37,000 Year History of How the Japanese Do Things Special.” and will lead a session on the Farm to Table movement in Japan. He will exhibit his work in collaboration with Milgrim and University of Iowa-based alumnus and washi expert Timothy Barrett. Other alumni whose careers focus on Japanese culture and arts will be invited to participate as well.
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Beth Bridgeman is an associate professor of Cooperative Education. She teaches a series of Reskilling and Resilience courses, exploring seed-resilience, plant medicine, regenerative agriculture and commensality. Her pedagogy includes peer-to-peer teaching within a democratic educational framework. Beth directs cooperative education partnerships in sustainability, environmental science, biomedical science, and alternative education. She is co-op liaison to the science division and to the Japanese language and culture program. A recipient of a faculty excellence award from the Southwestern Ohio Council for Higher Education, she is also an Oral History in the Liberal Arts Faculty Fellow, receiving funding for her project “Re-establishing a Seed Commons through Oral History Methodology” with support from the Mellon Foundation. Her concurrent research, “Pedagogies of Nature: Shinto, Spiritual Ecology, and Traditional Ecological Knowledge” recently received National Endowment for the Arts funding through the Great Lakes College Association.

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