HA NOI — Arts and culture are at the core of a nation's character, emphasised Japanese playwright Oriza Hirata at recent lectures in Ha Noi.
Hirata, one of the most influential figures on the Japanese arts scene, lectured to an audience of thousands on Saturday at the National Library and yesterday at Ha Noi University.
In his book, Arts as the Basis of a Nation (2001), Hirata argues that the key to restoring Japan is to focus on the arts instead of obsessing over economic growth.
In his lectures in Viet Nam, Hirata explained that his multiple experiences as a playwright, director, theatre manager and professor had formed his concrete ideas and opinions on national cultural policy.
The 50-year-old Hirata currently teaches at Osaka University Centre for the Study of Communication and was a special advisor to the Japanese Cabinet from 2009-2011.-VNS