Cultural workshops, talks, and lectures

Hello, my name is Mitski. I’m a PhD-educated anthropologist and cultural researcher with a burning passion for all things beautiful, meaningful, healing, fragrant, and tasty.

I give multisensory interactive workshops, media-enhanced talks, and specialist guest lectures on a wide range of topics about culture, society, arts, food, history, and cross-cultural communication.

Multilingual. Free to travel. Available globally online or in-person. Email me any questions.

Some of my talks, workshops and lectures

‘Understanding Japanese business culture through Japanese aesthetic concepts’
in May 2017 at Nomura Securities International, Inc.

‘Sweets of The World’ series
Six-month weekly lecture series on the world’s traditional desserts and their stories, recipes, and ingredients from Japan to Mexico and from Hungary to Morocco. (Delivered in July-December 2021).

In The Wake of Lost Realms’ series

What were the far-reaching consequences of Romans deciding not to conquer any lands north of River Maas? How come Budapest is so huge compared to the rest of Hungary? Has Armenia ever had access to the sea?

Exploring the past and legacy of various countries and socio-linguistic areas that once were strong and mighty culture-creators but have vanished since, if not without a trace. This journey will take you to, among others, from Andaluz and Austro-Hungary via Greater Armenia and Hansa to Sogdia and Zomia.

Japanese Studies 101′ series
What were samurais really about? How successful was Japan’s two-centuries-long nation-wide ban on meat consumption? Why was Japan the only Asian Great Power? Is Japan really declining because it allows little to no migration in? Why is Japan always an outlier vis-a-vis the rest of the developed world? What are the native sociological concepts that help understand Japan beter?

Twenty lecture-and-seminar sessions (plus extracurricular activities and useful resources) to learn everything you wanted to know and more about Japan’s society, history, and art. Grounded in the latest scientific anthropological and historical research on each topic, it introduces both beginners or seasoned Japanophiles into Japan’s most important issues, presented in an accessible and enjoyable language and narration style. Each section asks a salient question about Japan’s past and present and offers both in-depth answers and food for thought and further exploration.

‘Foreigner in Wonderland: How to survive and thrive in Britain
Interactive cross-cultural competence workshop on British ways, customs, values for foreign residents in the UK. Explains the point behind daily survival skills in Britain through the historical and sociopolitical roots of British ways, customs, and traits.

‘Any Soup’ll Do: an algorithm for all world cuisines’
Jazz up your daily meals by learning this exciting and highly practical way to cook practically any stew or soup from any world cuisine. Discoverthe important principles about ingredients, spices, combinations, cooking methods and sequences, all condensed into an easy-to-understand paradigm.

Learn the art of concise, elegant, and effective story-telling through the interactive workshop about the ancient Japanese art of telling a story in four pictures (Delivered for the SOAS Open Day, March 2015).

‘Zellij: the past and present of ornamental tiles’
Exploring the origin and meaning of Ibero-Arab azulejo tiles, their spread around the world, various national styles,and the reasons behind the recent revival of their popularity.

Japanese food: history and anthropology
There is infinitely more to Japanese cuisine than sushi and noodle. Fromthe lesser known yet easy to cook and fall for dishes to how to order a perfect Japanese meal at a restaurant, to the surprising history and origins of many dishes we take for traditionally Japanese.

Japan in Asia: from pirate raids and exporting Christian refugees to a militarist proto-EU and lifestyle migration
A history of Japanese presence in its Asian neighbourhood is full of swashbuckling, cultural appropriation, love for money, and serious power play. From supplying the entire region with professional mercenaries in the 16th century, to expelling Christian refugees in the 17th, to shutting everyone out in the 18th, to exporting karayuki prostitutes to every seaport, to imposing a pan-Asian proto-EU under the guise of decolonisation from the White men.

How Thailand manages its migrants: lessons for Europe
Should we ban all migration or do away with the borders and let everyone on? This false dilemma seems to dominate the recent migration debate. As all propaganda tropes, it offers neither better understanding nor solutions for the issues.

Thailand has a centuries-long history of successfully absorbing large numbers foreign populations. Although the pre-modern Siamese penchant for rounding up skillful craftsmen and reproductive-age women and forcefully resettling them around the capital may hardly be useful for our times, the post-war highly successful integration of the Chinese minority and the contemporary economic denisation (taxation without representation) of First World migrants are the less known examples how mass migration can be managed beneficially for all concerned parties.

Traditional Chinese Medicine for your daily well-being maintenance
Various herbs, roots and bark have over the course of history helped Chinese people enjoy longevity and well-being despite no modern medicine available. Many of them have been researched and proven to be highly effective where Western medicine is powerless. Even better, a lot of those are on sale in most Chinese supermarkets, easy to administer, and have no known side-effects. This workshop introduces seven “magic” plants that help maintain health or even heal various body conditions with little cost and effort.

Governance by ‘nudge’: how propaganda tropes and spin doctors manipulate mass consciousness and control public opinion

As the recent Covid lockdown debacle demonstrated, governments will not stop from employing devious spin doctors and psycholigists to prod the masses to the desired directions and behaviours. With over a century of recorded history, emotion-based propaganda has reached new heights of coverage and sophistication around the world. How to recognise whether you are being informed or manipulated, how to decipher the actual content of the official messages, how to make good decisions for yourself, mindful that powers that be are by far and large not looking out for you.

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