Dr. Munro - 満郎 - Rothach - Scotsman by birth, Japanese by adoption

22 Mar ‘13

6.30PM - 7.30PM
Speaker: Mr Rod Turner and Dr Allan Turner

Venue: Pathfoot Lecture Theatre, Pathfoot Building, University of Stirling

Dr. Allan R. Turner, Hebridean by birth, is a retired surgeon in the process of completing his PhD at the School of Celtic and Scottish Studies, University of Edinburgh.

His son, Roderick J. Turner, is an Assistant Professor in the English Department at the School of Medicine, Toho University in Tokyo, Japan. Graduating with a Bachelor of Science from the University of Stirling in 2001, he is currently undertaking research in various fields including Education and Linguistics, with future interests in Psychology, e-Learning and Behavioural Economics.

Neil Gordon Munro (1863-1942) was a Scottish medical doctor who became a naturalised Japanese citizen, and who treated his new compatriots through general medical practice, hospital work and surgery in his adopted country. However, he simultaneously researched and published in fields as diverse as “archaeology, primitive ethnology…” and “…some bacteriology”; it is perhaps the former for which he is best known. Performing numerous archaeological digs in Japan, he is credited as the first person to suggest the existence of prehistoric culture in Japan. Later in life he became an ardent researcher and supporter of the indigenous Ainu people of Japan, and significantly raised awareness of their heritage and culture through several books, films and other media. There are many similarities between the folklore and traditional healing of the Scots and the Ainu, as there are between the cultures of Scotland/UK and of Japan in general.

We will emphasize the significance of Munro’s life and work, but will also make brief reference to those other notable Scottish historical figures whose achievements had a lasting influence on what became modern Japan, through fields as diverse as photography, heavy industry, and brewing and distilling. We will also acknowledge the lesser-known influence of Japanese figures on Scottish development.


Please note that in the title above, Dr Munro's name has been translated into Japanese (満郎) and Gaelic (Rothach).  During the talk, Japanese and Gaelic excerpts will be translated into English.

This event is part of the University of Stirling's Japanese Week.  Please see the website for details of other events. 

RSVP: To book a place email: externalaffairs@stir.ac.uk

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