Tea ceremony and Sukiya : negating social hierarchy

Kumarasuriyar, Anoma C. (2011) Tea ceremony and Sukiya : negating social hierarchy. In Sharing Cultures 2011, 2nd International Conference on Intangible Heritage, 3 - 6 July, 2011., Tomar, Portugal.

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There is a widely held view that architecture is very strongly and even primarily determined by the society and culture rather than geographical, technical, economic or cli-matic factors. This is especially evident in societies where rituals, customs and tradition play a significant role in the design of built forms.

One such society was that of Feudal Japan under the rule of samurai warriors. The strictly controlled hierarchical society of Feudal Japan, isolated from the rest of the world for over 250 years, was able to develop the art and architecture borrowed from neighboring older cultures of China and Korea into what is now considered uniquely Japanese. One such architecture is the Sukiya style tea houses where the ritual of tea ceremony took place. This ritual was developed by the tea masters who were Zen monks or the merchants who belonged to the lowest class in the hierarchical feudal society. The Sukiya style developed from 14th to 16th century and became an architectural space that negated all the rules imposed on commoners by the samurai rulers.

The tea culture had a major influence on Japanese architecture, the concept of space and aesthetics. It extended into the design of Japanese gardens, clothes, presentation of food, and their manners in day to day life. The focus of this paper is the Japanese ritual of tea ceremony, the architecture of the tea house it inspired, the society responsible for its creation and the culture that promoted its popularity and its continuation into the 21st century.

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ID Code: 43857
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: No
Keywords: Culture, Society, Ritual, Heritage, Architecture
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > BUILT ENVIRONMENT AND DESIGN (120000) > ARCHITECTURE (120100) > Architectural History and Theory (120103)
Divisions: Past > QUT Faculties & Divisions > Faculty of Built Environment and Engineering
Past > Schools > School of Design
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2011 (please consult the author).
Deposited On: 20 Jan 2012 01:50
Last Modified: 06 Aug 2013 03:32

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