Upcoming Fall 2015 Lectures
Beer was never native to Japan, but in the space of a few generations it has become one of the country’s most important beverages. How? Dr. Jeffrey Alexander’s lecture will quench your intellectual thirst. Dr. Alexander's new book Brewed in Japan (UBC Press/University of Hawaii Press) follows the entire period from the earliest attempts at beer brewing in Japan in the 1870s to the recent development of Japanese craft brews, charting the steady rise in popularity of beer to become the drink of the masses. The fortunes and fumbles of Japan's major beer brewers illuminate a host of other critical issues in Japan, including technology, modernization, women's progress, war, consumer preferences and the evolution of popular culture.
The lecture will explore the advent of Western-style taverns and beer gardens in Japan, the total control of beer production by Japan's Ministry of Finance during the Second World War, the rapid rise in beer consumption by Japanese women during the postwar period, and the continued dominance of long-surviving Japanese beer-making companies like Asahi, Kirin and Sapporo. Based on an array of Japanese language sources, Dr. Alexander's presentation will also illustrate how postwar marketing campaigns and shifting consumer preferences combined to make beer Japan's leading alcoholic beverage by the 1960s. In addition, Dr. Alexander will discuss his current ongoing study on the subject of Japan's postwar whiskey trade.
About the Speaker
Dr. Jeffrey Alexander is Associate Professor of History at the University of Wisconsin at Parkside, sixty miles north of Chicago. Dr. Alexander received his Ph.D. in History from the University of British Columbia in 2005. His research has focused on Japan's industrial and commercial progress as well as shifting product consumption patterns during the period from 1870 to the present. Dr.Alexander is also the author of Japan's Motorcycle Wars: An Industry History (UBC Press/University of Hawaii Press, 2008).
Please visit here to view the past programs.