Organization

Practical Research and Collaboration Division
International Research Collaboration Office
Associate Professor
PhD

Concurrent: Graduate School of Environmental Studies
IRIDeS
Associate Professor
Research Subject(s)
I am a socio-cultural anthropologist studying life and death rituals, religion, and collective memory. Besides, I examine their roles for the bereaved and society's well-being and welfare at large in the contexts of disasters. Finally, my interest extends to people's conception and relationship to the environment. My ethnographic areas include Indonesia, France, and Japan.
Key Words
Rituals of Life and Death / Religion.Memory / Human Diginity and Welfare / Environment
Website
Research Activities

DEATH STUDIES: I research the handling of the corpses, funerals, grief ane memory of the dead in contemporary society and disasters. 

1) "Japanese Tree Burial: Ecology, Kinship and the Culture of Death" Routledge, 2014 

Tree burial uses a large forest as a cemetery instead of traditional family gravestones. Each grave consists of a small tree on which a small wooden tablet inscribed with the deceased's name. The book shows how the new practice fits into the development of ecological ideas and how individuals' remains can nourish the earth and rejoin natural cycles. (MORE INFO https://www.routledge.com/Japanese-Tree-Burial-Ecology-Kinship-and-the-Culture-of-Death/Boret/p/book/9781138200333) ;

2) "Death in the Early Twenty-first Century," Palgrave, 2017. 

The book demonstrates that mortuary practices are not fixed forms, but rather dynamic processes negotiated by the dying, the bereaved, funeral experts, and public institutions. (MORE INFO https://www.palgrave.com/gp/book/9783319523644)

MASS DEATH
This study presents lessons learned from three recent large-scale disasters with high death tolls: the 2011 Tohoku earthquake (15,594 deaths), the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami in Indonesia (about 160,000 deaths), and the 2003 heatwave in France. The objective is to provide a socio-cultural understanding of mass casualty management, draw "lessons learned" by evaluating successes and failures, design a framework and apply the results. It will also provide recommendations and advice to policymakers, community leaders and other stakeholders in disaster preparedness in Indonesia, France and Japan, including areas threatened by the Nankai Trough and direct urban earthquakes.

Mass Death

This research examines the management of mass death during three recent large-scale disasters: the 2011 Tohoku earthquake (15,594 deaths), the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami in Indonesia (about 160,000 deaths), and the 2003 heatwave in France. The objective is to provide a socio-cultural understanding of mass casualty management, draw "lessons learned" by evaluating successes and failures, design a framework and apply the results. It will also provide recommendations and advice to policymakers, community leaders and other stakeholders in disaster preparedness in Indonesia, France and Japan, including areas threatened by the Nankai Trough and direct urban earthquakes.

Selected Works

Fukuda, Yu and Boret, S. (2019).Theodicy of Tsunami: A Study of Commemoration in Aceh, Indonesia. In Nabil Chang-Kuan Lin (ed.), Exploring Religio-cultural Pluralism in Southeast Asia: Intercommunion, Localization, Syncretisation and Conflict.
Boret, Sébastien Penmellen and Akihiro Shibayama. (2018). The Roles of Monuments for the Dead during the Aftermath of the Great East Japan Earthquake, International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction,29,55-62. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijdrr.2017.09.021
Boret, Sébastien Penmellen. (2017). People’s Own Grave, People’s Own Life: Identity, agency and memorialisation in Japan, In Boret Penmellen, S. and Long, S. (eds) The Anthropology of Death in the Early Twenty-First Century: Ritual, authority and memory, New York: Palgrave MacMillan.
Boret, Sebastien Penmellen. (2016). Towards An Anthropology of Consequence, In Hendry, J. An Introduction to Social Anthropology: Sharing Our Worlds (3rd Edition).
An Anthropological Study of a Japanese Tree Burial: Kinship, Identity and Death. (2013). In Suzuki, H. (ed.) Death and Dying in Contemporary Japan: Shifting Social Structures and Values. London: Routledge.

Selected Memberships
  • Society for Applied Anthropology (SfAA)
  • Association of Social Anthropologists (ASA)
  • European Association of Social Anthropologists (EASA)
  • Japan Society for Cultural Anthropology (JASCA)
  • Tohoku Folklore Society
Selected Awards
  • 2020 Lucy Mair Medal & Marsh Prize for Applied Anthropology: Dr Sebastien P. Boret (Japan: Tohoku University) for his interdisciplinary and applied research on the anthropology of death and disaster
  • 2018 Best Paper Award at the Aceh International Workshop and Expo on Tsunami Recovery (Shosuke Sato, Anawat Suppasri, Sébastien Boret, Masaharu Nakagawa and Fumihiko Imamura)
Others


Associate Editor of the International Journal for Disaster Risk Reduction (IJDRR), Elsevier https://www.journals.elsevier.com/international-journal-of-disaster-risk-reduction ;