What is “Oral history”/オーラル・ヒストリー(口述記録)とは

He was a weaving tool craftsman until 50 years ago/50年前まで機道具の職人だった方からの聞き取り

There is a recording method called “oral history” a part of digital archive study. It is a method to meet historians or elderly people directly their place, to record videos or record their talking with audio devices.
There is an aspect that the burden on the time constraint and the physical strength becomes big for those who receive the interview. However recording their talking with their special dialects and intonation with gestures in videos or audios are very important way to leave their wisdom and techniques to future generations.



Try not to miss opportunities/また機会があるとは限らない

they are craftsman making bamboo weaving tools by hand/竹製の機道具を作る職人親子

This is a photo I took in China in 2007, When I visited there as a weaving research for 10 days. I’m a kind of craftsman making or repairing weaving tools and do weaving, but unfortunately there’s no more person I can visit to listen and learn about the traditional techniques in Japan.  Luckily I had an opportunity to meet this father and a son who is making weaving tools in China, so I visited a house where they stayed making tools for this house. It was still common in China some craftsman visit a customer’s place and stay 1-2 weeks while creating the tools. Then the craftsman move to next place to get another job. It is said there once was similar system in Japan.
I appreciated this opportunity to meet them while I was in China. I learned a lot from this craftsman but sadly the farther passed away a few years later, and the son was making tools for awhile but he also change his work… so now China became same situation with Japan.



Why I’m so rushing about archiving/急務である調査と記録

This is a photo I took  this summer when I had a weaving training with Omaki-san who is 93 years old.  She is great right now but of course she has a little health problem, and she has a pride for her work, but she is not able to what she wants to do because of her age so sometimes she avoids let someone know about her techniques. Since I’ve keep learning from her since 2004, so we have strong relationship and I think she also feels this is the last chance for her to let me/younger generations know about her techniques, so she decided let me show her work since this summer. I know it’s not easy for her let me show her work like when she was young, but she always tries to do her best, it is very touching to me… it is my motivation to keep learning from her. I don’t wish to say but we are not sure we have one more year or two more, so no one can let stop us about this archiving opportunity.



This is the current situation/機織りのことを書く前に

my tool making teacher who asked me to start weaving in 2001, he also has health problem now…

As I wrote before, I’m not so professional yet but I make or repair weaving tools and also do weaving. If there’s more opportunity to learn from some teachers about what I’m doing, I prefer to focus on about my creative work more than archiving. This is my honest feeling. But if I won’t do recording now, there’s no way to learn their technique anymore and once it is disappeared, it’s almost impossible to start doing it again in this era. There’s many same cases in the folklore field because everyone try to pass their techniques and knowledges with oral or showing it. I think this happens not only Japan but all over the world.
I’m going to write about textile post little by little, but I felt it’s better write this current situation first to let steemians know what I’m trying to do not only weaving but also archiving. Thank you very much for reading.


Published by yo-yo

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