The Power of Reminiscence Groups to Overcome the Disaster of Tsunami


  • Toyoko Nomura


The paper presents two studies of a volunteer reminiscence group as a support to overcome the Great East Japan Earthquake. The studies were conducted in the city of Miyako, Iwate prefecture of Japan. The first study is on a volunteers’ reminiscence group with the elderly, the younger generation and the professionals. The second study describes an activity conducted by the volunteers’ reminiscence group on a railway that has deep roots in the communities of the area. It offered a social opportunity to elders who have become homebound since the community center was washed away by the tsunami. The voices of elders and younger volunteers in the activity are introduced in considering the implications of the study. The discussion covers the roles of the speaker and the listener, and the complexity of their meanings, as well as the power of reminiscing to go beyond time.






Special Section: Perspectives on Reminiscence and Life Review