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Education

Interesting Lectures and Seminars

Thompson Seminar Sports & Media: Watching the games of Sports Media

Mr. Reo Kumon
Graduated from School of Sport Sciences in March, 2008

All the students of Prof. Thompson's seminar in his office on Tokorozawa Campus

All the students of Prof. Thompson's seminar in his office on Tokorozawa Campus

Let me first introduce Prof. Lee Thompson before explaining his seminar. He is an American and professor in sports sciences focusing on sumo and catch wrestling. Interestingly, he once worked as a radio DJ in Japan. With his DJ-like fluent English and 'authentic' American jokes, his seminar is filled with hilarity mingled sometimes with just a little bit of something like a wet blanket though.

Prof. Thompson and Reo

Prof. Thompson and Mr. Reo

In the seminar, we conduct researches into mass media coverage of sports and analyze its influence on society. We are expected to develop media literacy (ability to access, analyze and produce a variety of media texts) and get rid of subjective views of the media.

Prof. Thompson's seminar is five years old and one of its unique features is a summer camp in the United States. Its objectives are to produce sports videos in the United States that has its own culture and history in sports, to become the Producer, not the Audience, of the media, and consequently to develop the ability to discover Hidden Truths, an indispensable ability for media literacy.

PGE Park in Portland, Oregon (summer camp in the U.S.)

PGE Park in Portland, Oregon (summer camp in the U.S.)

When I joined Prof. Thompson's seminar, I was just interested in studying the media in the light of familiar sports but I've found the media very narrative, more narrative than I imagined. A typical example is this: Why is there such a great difference between the image of the baseball player Ichiro and that of the sumo wrestler Asashoryu, both best players of the most popular sports in Japan? If the media had not created these narratives about the two, they both could be heroes. Sharpen your media literacy skills and watch the games of the media, and you can solve the problem.

(Offered by WASEDA WEEKLY)