07 Oct 2022

North West Japanese Cultural Group presents discussion and free screening of acclaimed Scorsese film at Derry's Nerve Centre

The North West Japanese Cultural Group, which aims to introduce many facets of its rich culture to the people of Northern Ireland, presents: A Talk and Discussion on ‘European Missionaries during the Samurai Era in Japan' at Derry's Nerve Centre. This is to be followed by a free screening of the acclaimed film, ‘Silence (Chinmoku)’ on Saturday, 4th August at the Nerve Centre. The discussion, 'European Missionaries during Samurai Era in Japan', will take place between 1.30pm and 2pm followed by the screening of the film from 2pm to 4.30pm. ‘Silence’ is a 2016 historical period drama film directed by Martin Scorsese, based on the 1966 novel by the Japanese novelist, Shusaku Endo. It is the story of a Jesuit missionary sent to 17th century Japan and Kakure Kirishitan (Hidden Christians). Hiromi Takahashi, organiser of this event said: "The film’s theme of religious persecution is as relevant today as it was during the 17th century. "The missionaries learn how bad things are in Japan for Catholics, where the religion is outlawed. "Parallels may be seen with Ireland’s own history and current attitudes in Europe and the US. "This should prove to be a stimulating and enlightening discussion.” Junko Okura of North West Japanese Cultural Group said: “We’d like to explore and present more about our rich culture than the more obvious popular ‘Manga’ and Food themes. "This film could be a starting point for a wider discussion. We want to explore similarities and common themes between our two island nations.” This film showing has been awarded a grant by the Big Lottery Fund as a project to demonstrate the cultural exchange between Ireland and Japan over the past 100 years.

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