MODERN ASIAN STUDIES REVIEW Vol.5 新たなアジア研究に向けて5号
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However, it is worth noting that when researchers of Tibet sought a substitute field, they were presented with two possible options. The first option was to conduct a field survey among the ethnic Tibetans living in the Himalayas, and the second option was to conduct listening surveys in the Tibetan refugee camps in India in order to research an oral history. It was these two options that linked respectively to Sherpa-centrism and Lhasa-centrism.11 Hereunder, I will give an overview of both these options.III Modern Tibetan Studies as “Substitutive Ethnography”1 The First Substitute Field: Nepalese HimalayasNepal allowed foreign researchers access in 1952. This was welcome news to the foreign researchers who sought to study Tibetan society. It meant that they could begin conducting Tibetan studies based on field surveys in the Tibet cultural sphere (in the broad sense of the term) including the Nepalese Himalayas.As for Japan, region-wide surveys were conducted in 1953 and 1958 in the Nepalese Himalayas by a group led by Jiro Kawakita. In particular, a study on the Tibetan community living in the Dolpo region gained international attention.12 Kawakita published for general readership the survey records of 1958 in Choso no Kuni (The King-dom of the Sky Burial) [KAWAKITA 1960]. The opening passage of the book, shown below, conveys well the atmosphere in Tibetan studies at the time. The more Tibetan studies advance, the more urgent it becomes to once conduct a thoroughgoing study of those Tibetans who are the least affected by modern civilization. “The least civilized Tibetans” are most likely living deep in the mountains around former Xikang and Qinghai. However, to begin with, there were no prospects of gaining entry permission from the Chinese Communist authorities. I searched for them along the Himalayas, then I ultimately selected the Dolpo region as the field for study [KAWAKITA 1960: 12].Since there were no prospects of conducting a survey in Chinese-ruled Tibet, Kawakita instead headed to the part of the Tibet cultural sphere in the southern foothills of the Himalayas. This approach was one of the standard international practices during the 1950s. The Kingdom of the Sky Burial became the bestseller among books of its kind, and this fact, along with its title, which referred to a very rare type of funeral, was instrumental in forming the popular image of Tibet held by Japanese.During the same decade, Chie Nakane, who was undertaking a four-year overseas study period, conducted rigorous survey activities in various places in India, and also conducted a survey in the Tibetan Himalayan kingdom of Sikkim [NAKANE 1958]. Nakane, nevertheless, spoke frankly about her regret at not being able to enter Chinese-ruled central Tibet, but she resolved to conduct a survey in India, which permitted surveys, and this survey produced outstanding results. Shown underneath is an example of Nakane’s candid recollections. It is most interesting to compare it with Kawakita’s statement above.To begin with, the reason I went to India was because I expected there might be a chance to visit Tibet or, even if I could not enter Tibet, I wished to get as close as possible. Since I ultimately could not enter Tibet, I conducted surveys in Assam, the Himalayas, and I also studied the Hindu community. I then started tackling anthropology in earnest and consequently studied in Britain [NAKANE 1990: 186].018MODERN ASIAN STUDIES REVIEW Vol.5

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