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Ending Support in Times of Changing Demographics in Japan

Headshot of Prof. Haruyo Inoue; photo of a blooming cherry tree by a waterfall and stream; descriptive text (title, date, time, location)
Tuesday, November 07, 2023
2:00 pm - 3:30 pm
Haruyo Inoue (Toyo University)

The family grave, tended by patrilineal kin, was once the conventional ending point for the dead in Japan. But demographic shifts--narrowing of nuclear family consciousness, a high aging population, fewer children getting born, a decrease in marriage and co-habitation, an increase in single households--are changing this.

Today, fewer Japanese have the option, or desire, for burial in the family grave. But where to go instead, and how to find mortuary support?

In the move to find alternatives to the family grave, Haruyo Inoue has been a pioneer in Japan. A sociologist and a practitioner who started Ending Center, one of the first alternative burial grounds in Japan where burial is by cherry blossoms (桜葬sakurasō) instead of the family grave, Professor Inoue will speak of the "inclusive relationality" (結縁) promoted here, and of the ending support given to single Japanese (おひとり様 ohitorisama).

--Note: this talk will be delivered in Japanese with interpretation by Dr. Jieun Cho.--

About the speaker:
Haruyo Inoue is a retired professor of Toyo University, a visiting research fellow at the Institutes of Social Sciences and Contemporary Society at Toyo University, the director of NPO Ending Center, and a representative of the Ending Design Institute.