The best way to choose a topic for your research paper is to browse your readings and other publications about Japanese society and culture until you find a topic that interests you. Below you'll find some resources to get you started.
Per your syllabus, possible topics include (but aren't limited to) material culture, foods, taboos, pollution, gift exchange, rituals, animal categories, bodily symbols, beauty, magic, power & status, measurement, gender, kinship, identities, art, birth, schooling, work-life, marriage, ageing, death, and the after life.
Covers topics such as technology, food, nationalism and rise of anime and manga in the visual arts. The Cambridge Companion to Modern Japanese Culture traces the cultural transformation that took place over the course of the twentieth century, and paints a picture of a nation rich in cultural diversity.
Focuses on contemporary Japan and the social and cultural trends that are important at the beginning of the twenty-first century. This Handbook provides a cutting-edge and comprehensive survey of significant phenomena, institutions, and directions in Japan today, on issues ranging from gender and family, the environment, race and ethnicity, and urban life, to popular culture and electronic media.
Offers a wide-ranging approach to all aspects of Japanese society, with chapters on class, geographical and generational variation, work, education, gender, minorities, popular culture and the establishment.