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Study Group on Norm & Order

Projects Led by Graduate Students at Ars Vivendi in Academic Year 2010 & 2011

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◆Research topic: A sociological/philosophical approach to 〈laws〉 as norms or elements of social order

I. Topics and Contribution to the Global COE Program Ars Vivendi
1. Topics, Objectives and Impacts
The purpose of this project is to thoroughly examine norms and social order. What are they? What is the relationship between them? These questions will be answered by a careful reading of the literature in several fields including sociology, philosophy, economics, and ethics, and an interdisciplinary investigation of how norms and elements of social order ought to be and how they actually are. The significance of this project can be found in the new horizons it opens by reassessing the meaning of 〈laws〉 and norms/social order on the basis of domestic and international research trends not limited to a single discipline while remaining focused on issues concerning the actual lives of individuals. This research group is also expected to play a <mimetic> educational role in regard to subsequent groups of graduate students.

2. Contribution to the Global COE Program Ars Vivendi
In pursuit of the research goals stated above, in orderto gain a foothold in understanding 〈laws〉 we will organize and critically examine existing research on norms/social order in a variety of fields. Most of the projects undertaken by this COE involve 〈laws〉 or bioethics, but as there has been insufficient examination of these issues from the point of view of norms/social order this project will contribute to one of this COE’s stated goals,”Accumulation and Investigation”, in particular “3 'Investigation'”. The results of this project examining the ideal state, potential, and limitations of 〈laws〉 as norms/elements of social order will also be made public through each group member’s writings, academic presentations, etc. These research results will contribute to another goal of this COE, “Connection and Construction”, specifically “2 'Presenting images of society'”.

II. Research plan/methodology/methods of presenting results

Research plan/methodology
Until now most members of this group have met once or twice a month to take part in an independent study group concerning 〈laws〉 and norms/social order. From 2008 to 2009 this was called the “utilitarianism study group” and members read works by leading contemporary proponents of utilitarianism such as R.M. Hare and Peter Singer. In 2009-2010 the “〈Penal law x Death〉 study group” engaged in close reading of philosophical literature concerning theories of punishment, responsibility and distribution. In fiscal 2011 members will engage in reading not only extant literature on theories of legal and political philosophy but also other related literature including sociological theories concerning law as a system shaping norms and social order, and will further develop their investigation of these topics by creating a review group including external scholars to examine the writings published by those involved in this research. To this end the group requires funds for copies of related texts (including fees incurred when requesting copies of texts not owned by the school from the library) and funds needed to organize seminars on the writings published by last year’s members and provide opportunities for short-term intensive presentation/study events (travel expenses, etc.).

Methods of presenting research results
Research results will be presented through published articles and reports given by members at academic conferences/research seminars. Going forward production of a report compiling research results of this projectwithin fiscal 2011 is also being considered.



ABE Akira August 18, 2010 "An Alternative Approach to Global Ethic: Beyond Rorty," Workshop with Prof.Thomas Pogge, Ritsumeikan University

ABE Akira March 2011 "Problems of Consent regarding Care?: On Paternalism and "Euthanasia," Gendai Shakaigaku Rironkenkyu 5

ABE Akira March 31, 2011 Greetings of Solidarity: Rorty and Thoughts of Hope, Seikatsushoin

SAKURAI Satoshi January 22, 2011 Japanese History of Executioners: Using an Approach of Historical Sociology Seikyusha

FUJIWARA Nobuyuki May 16, 2010 "Local Achievements and Attribution of Responsibility at the Level of Description of Acts against Medicalized Suicide," The 36th Annual Convention of the Japanese Society of Health and Medical Sociology, Yamaguchi Prefectual Universirty

FUJIWARA Nobuyuki March 25, 2011 "Prevention of 'Medicalized' Suicide Prevention Methods and Emphasis of Duties and Responsibilities of Family Members: Its Ideological Formation," Ars Vivendi Vol.3: 117-132

HOTTA Yoshitaro March 25, 2011 "Socialization Theory of Care and Liberalism: Theory of Distribution of Care and Division of Labor," pp. 303-348 AMADA Josuke, KITAMURA Kentaro & HOTTA Yoshitaro (Eds.) March 25, 2011 Governing Aging: Policies and History of Aging Seikatsu Shoin, 522p. ISBN-10: 4903690733 ISBN-13: 9784903690735 3150 [amazon][kinokuniya]

MURAKAMI Shinji August 18, 2010 "An Essay on the Complementarity between Capability and Global Resource Dividend," Workshop with Prof.Thomas Pogge, Ritsumeikan University

MURAKAMI Shinji January 9, 2011 "Essay on the Fundamental Theory of Public Reason in Democracy," 7th International Conference Multiculturalism and Social Justice: Democracy and Globalization,Ritsumeikan University,Kyoto

MOTOOKA Hirokazu January 9, 2011 "Democracy from within Detention Centers: Hunger Strikes by Illegal Migrants in Japan," 7th International Conference Multiculturalism and Social Justice: Democracy and Globalization,Ritsumeikan University,Kyoto



◆Researchers participating in the project (9 individuals in total) *Affiliations are as of fiscal 2011
Name Affiliation
KADOSAKi Yohei Graduate School of Core Ethics and Frontier Sciences
SAKURAI Satoshi Graduate School of Core Ethics and Frontier Sciences
OTANI Michitaka Graduate School of Core Ethics and Frontier Sciences*
MOTOOKA Hirokazu Graduate School of Core Ethics and Frontier Sciences
FUJIWARA Nobuyuki Research Assistant, Ritsumeikan University
MURAKAMI Shinji Postdoctoral Fellow, Kinugasa Research Organization
NAKAKURA Tomonori Research Assistant, Ritsumeikan University
HOTTA Yoshitaro Postdoctoral Fellow, Kinugasa Research Organization
ABE Akira Project Researcher, Research Institute for Humanity and Nature
KATO Yukiko Postdoctoral Fellow, Kinugasa Research Organization


Tomonori Nakakura
trakukana(at)gmail.com (Please replace“(at)” with “@”)

Translated by Robert Chapeskie
Proofread by KATAOKA Minoru
UP:January 25, 2012 REV :January 26, 2012/February 27, 2012
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