As part of its monthly specialist spotlight series, the North American Coordinating Council (NCC) on Japanese Library Resources recently profiled Rebecca Corbett, Japanese studies librarian at USC's East Asian Library since 2016 and director of special projects within the USC Libraries’ Specialized Collections group since 2023.
In the profile, which traces Corbett's path to academic librarianship and Japanese studies, Paula Curtis highlights Corbett's scholarship and public outreach around Japanese tea culture:
Corbett’s monograph, Cultivating Femininity: Women and Tea Culture in Edo and Meiji Japan (University of Hawai’i Press, 2018), explores the intersections of Japanese tea culture, practice, history, and gender. In addition to publishing articles on women in tea and the practice of tea more generally, she is also presently working on a project related to Western encounters with Japanese tea in the nineteenth century. Her outreach efforts align with her research interests in tea culture, for example, she has been the Faculty Advisor to the USC Chanoyu Tea Club since its inception in 2018. As an Urasenke tea practitioner with decades of experience, as well as an academic specialist in the history of Japanese tea culture, Corbett regularly offers tea demonstrations and lectures for classes at USC, other schools and public institutions such as Occidental College, the USC Pacific Asia Museum, and the Ringling Museum in Sarasota, Florida. Her Japanese tea culture related activities have seen her interviewed on KTLA local morning news in LA and she was even profiled by the Japanese women’s magazine Precious in their May, 2018 issue!
Read the full profile on the NCC website.