This paper critically reviews Japanese geographers' contribution to Third World research in the postwar period. The author highlights the discrepancies between the geogra-phers studying the Third World and geographical circles within Japan. In the pioneering period (pre mid-1960s) some active Japanese geographers independently commenced their work on the Third World without much institutional support. They established their own style of research mainly depending on participatory observation methods. In the following period (mid-1960s to 1970s), some large scale research projects were organized by major geographical departments in Japan. The University of Tsukuba's research project on Northeastern Brazil and Hiroshima University's research project on rural India are the two major ones. These research projects consisted of both physical and human geographers and adopted more extensive research methods. Since the 1980s, much more interdisciplinary research has been organized and an increasing number of younger geographers entered Third World studies. However, there has not yet been much interaction between these geographers studying the Third World and other mainstream geographers in order to innovate research methodology and epistemology of the discipline. It should be the crucial task for contemporary geographical research in Japan.
Since the late-80 s, abnormally many golf courses have been planned and constructed in Japan, and civil movements for conservation of the nature have been raised. These are regarded as typical examples of today's human-nature relationship. I studied the case of Miyoshi Village focusing on its promoters, supporters and contributors from the viewpoints of their history, participation, inter-relation and thought. The development was planned on the abandoned fuel forest of which wilderness was undesired by the landowners. The opposition movement was began in 1988, in fear of the chemical harm from the golf course, by a pre-existing association for natural food established by village farmers and urban consumers. Their petition to cancel the development was once adopted by the Village Assembly, but was overruled by pro-development villagers who thought the golf course harmless. Their second action was the election campaign for the village chief. That idea was presented by an urban-raised ecologist living in the mountains self-sufficiently; he joined the movement to become the actual promoter. Despite their efforts they lost the election, after which the farmers nearly gave up. But in 1992, the ecologist introduced Tachiki Trust as the final action, which was a method of selling the ownership of the living trees at the developmental site to nationwide contributors. Tachiki Trust was carried out in chain by the national association of environmentalists which was a theoretical and an emotional bond of the local members. Supported by the mass media and urban people, Miyoshi's Tachiki Trust sold over 3, 000 trees and rejected the plan in 1994. In that chronology we can see the highly complicated structure of today's conservation movement, and understand the various histories and thoughts of the people concerned.
Land use patterns in Amazonia are undergoing major changes as a result of both internal and external factors. The region is experiencing rapid demographic growth. Concurrently, social, economic, and political events beyond the region are restructuring local patterns. Instead of an expected intensification in land uses, the trend is toward an extensive form of land management. The present study focuses on the processes and patterns of agricultural disintensification by examining on the past and current farming practices in the estuarine floodplain near Belem, Para state, Brazil. Prior to the mid-1970s, sugar cane, cultivated on the tidal lowlands under the short fallow-swidden system, served as the main cash-earning product. Following the swift demise of sugar cane farming as a result of several factors, e. g., improvements in transportation and communications, agricultural subsidies, modernization of labor legislation, and rapid urban growth, the fruit of the acai (Euterpe oleracea) palm became the dominant crop. The palm, cultivated in agroforests or managed in the fallows, is far less demanding on labor, while economically more rewarding than sugar cane. Cared as a permanent crop, land use is less intensive and ecologically more sound than sugar cane cultivation. This example from Amazonia contributes to the ongoing discussions on land use dynamics, and it also serves to indicate that there are no unilinear directions in land use changes.
High negative correlation between summer rainfall anomaly in the Yangtze Valley and the middle reaches of the Yellow River in China is shown. Rainfall Anomaly Index (RAI) and the Student's t-test revealed a decadal fluctuation of RAI in the Yangtze Valley at the end of the 1970s. The results concerning correlation between RAI and atmospheric circulation indices show that the variation of summer RAI in the Yangtze Valley is closely related to western Pacific subtropical high index (20-30°N, 130-170°E) at 500 hPa-level in May and westerly zonal index (40-60°N, 90-170°E) at 500 hPa-level in July. The decadal fluctuation of RAI at the end of the 1970s in the Yangtze Valley corresponds to the fluctuation of westerly zonal index in July and western Pacific subtropical high index in May. The impact of sea surface temperature (SST) (EQ-14°N, 130-150°E) in the western Pacific Ocean on RAI in the Yangtze Valley is also discussed. The negative correlation between the SST in June and summer RAI in the Yangtze River at the end of 1970s exhibits a clear atmospheric-oceanic teleconnection. It is closely associated with rainy conditions in the Yangtze Valley during El Niño in the period 1978-1991.
In the Ryukyu Island Arc, bioclastic sands containing foraminifera, e. g. Baculogypsina and Calcarina with spines on their tests, are abundant in sands of beaches and reefs. Attrition of the spines of Baculogypsina and Calcarina clarifies habitat and dispersion of these foraminifera at Yoshihara reef in Ishigakijima, where water flow clearly exists due to a distinct channel in the reef flat. At Sesokojima reef where no distinct channel exists, the method of using the attrition of spines on these bioclastic sands is applicable for evaluating transport courses of the bioclastic sands. This method provides a clue to elucidate gain and loss of beach sands in reefal coasts of the Ryukyu Island Arc.