Peter A Goldsbury wrote:
Well, I, too, am in the boondocks and do not think that size and foreignness can be equated so easily. I used the term ijime, but did not intend it in its usual narrow sense. It is more of a tendency, very often exploited here and not just with respect to foreigners, to emphasize differences rather than similarities.
The problem in these discussions is that it all boils down to individual experiences and these clearly differ considerably.
Well, I wasn't trying to equate
size and foreignness, but rather show a connection. I have no doubt there is a certain marginalization of foreigners in aikido; I see such marginalization in non-budo contexts not infrequently here in Toyota City, where there is a large Brazilian population. And yes, much depends on personal experience, but I do not necessarily see that as a problem in the discussion. My intention was not to contradict or supplant your (or others') accounts, but rather to supplement those with my own. My point simply being that even if one is lucky enough to find a place to train where no such marginalization occurs, there are other considerations that should keep foreign aikidoka in Japan on their toes when it comes to ukemi. For the non-Japanese aikidoka thinking of training in Japan, forewarned is forearmed, and many perspectives would be beneficial, wouldn't you agree?