Amakusa Islands


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Amakusa Islands

(ämäko͞o`sä), archipelago, c.340 sq mi (880 sq km), Kumamoto and Kagoshima prefectures, in the East China Sea, off W Kyushu, Japan. There are about 70 islands in the group. Shimo, the largest island, is the site of Hondo, which is the chief town. The interior of the islands is rugged; the coastal lowlands are fertile. Timber, oranges, fish, porcelain, and pearls are the principal products. Amakusa clansmen made the islands a major center of Christianity in the 16th cent. Villages and historical relics of this period are found in Unzen-Amakusa National Park.
References in periodicals archive ?
Born a living god, Hirohito became a marine biologist and botanist and published nine successful books with titles such as Some Hydroids of the Amakusa Islands and The Crabs of Sagami Bay.
Amakusa airport in the Amakusa Islands, Kumamoto Prefecture, officially opened Thursday with an inaugural flight departing for Fukuoka airport in Fukuoka Prefecture.
Both works present the women of the Amakusa Islands who left to work overseas as products of chronic poverty.
Mori argues that terrain and soil unsuitable for agricultural production and the spatial isolation of the Amakusa Islands from mainland Kyushu led to conditions of overpopulation and chronic poverty that undermined any chance of progressive material change or even relative prosperity in the region.
Despite the difference in the conclusions, both interpretations present the amakusa onna/karayuki-san as a phenomenon confined geographically, in terms of their origins, to the Amakusa Islands.
Both ascribe a very specific and historically limited identity to the karayuki-san, as a phenomenon confined to the Amakusa Islands.
The boundary notion, "cultural uniqueness" of the Amakusa Islands, is produced according to definite concepts of its geographical specificity and the Islands' historically unchanging economic determinants of overpopulation, poverty, and emigration.
The nature of Mori's empirical evidence, and the way he utilizes it, present the karayuki-san as being specific to the Amakusa Islands.
Contrary to Mori's argument, the practice of women migrating overseas was not confined to the Amakusa Islands.