About us

About us

About us




Global Mediterranean at the National Museum of Ethnology (MINPAKU) is a six-year working group project funded by the National Institutes for the Humanities (NIHU). Our partner institutions are Toyo University's Asian Cultures Research Institute, Research Institute for Languages and Cultures of Asia and Africa at the Tokyo University of Foreign Studies, and Doshisha University's Research Center for Multiculturalism and Intersectionality in Complex Cities (MICCS).

The project aims to formulate new approaches to area studies by examining the global flow of people, goods, and knowledge through the Mediterranean Sea from the 17th century to the present day. There are two main objectives. First, to deconstruct the existing framework of area studies which divides countries surrounding the Mediterranean Sea into “Europe” in the north and “the Middle East and North Africa” in the south. We explore the Mediterranean as a discursive space that represents this region as a unique civilization with shared values and cultures. Second, although the Mediterranean Sea is an inland sea, it is connected to the Americas beyond the Atlantic Ocean if one sails westward, and to East Africa and the Indian Ocean from the Red Sea via the Suez Canal to the southeast. That will bring us to Central Asia by following the Silk Road. The Mediterranean has therefore always been global. Our focus is on “modern” globalization, which is characterized by an exponential increase in the mobility of people, goods, and knowledge. Anthropologists have studied migration and historians have studied trade, but the ways in which such movement itself shapes people’s geographic imaginations awaits a full exploration.


国立民族学博物館拠点 National Museum of Ethnology

東洋大学アジア文化研究所拠点 Toyo University

同志社大学都市共生研究センター拠点 Doshisha University

東京外国語大学アジア・アフリカ言語文化研究所拠点 Tokyo University of Foreign Studies


人間文化研究機構グローバル地域研究プログラム NIHU Global Area Studies Program