Japanese Tea Ceremony in Brazil
Master’s degree, University of São Paulo
Early in my career, I studied the Japanese in Brazil. Brazil has received more Japanese migrants than any other country in the world. Presently, there are around 1.5 million Japanese migrants and their descendants in the country. I had been interested in Japan since my undergraduate years. After studying ikebana (flower arrangement), shodo (calligraphy), and nihongo (Japanese language) in São Paulo, I found chado (‘the way of tea’), an art form that contained all the other traditional Japanese arts. A year later, I was fortunate to be awarded a Urasenke Foundation scholarship to spend a year studying tea in Kyoto. I drew on the (bodily) knowledge acquired in Kyoto and my years of studying tea among Japanese Brazilians for my master’s degree thesis (in Portuguese) on the ways in which they performed their identity as Japanese through tea ceremony. I have published a paper in English drawing on this research.