Sumo Wrestlers vs. Firefighters

Sidedoor Season 8
08.10.2022

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Sumo wrestler and firefighter face off

In 19th century Japan, two sumo wrestlers faced down dozens of firefighters in a brawl so epic it inspired a Kabuki play. But the story of what really happened—and who the heroes are—is all a matter of perspective. Underdogs, antiheroes, and villains. How do we decide who plays what role?

Guests:

Kit Brooks, Japan Foundation Assistant Curator of Japanese Art at the Smithsonian's National Museum of Asian Art

Frank Feltens, Japan Foundation Associate Curator of Japanese Art at the Smithsonian's National Museum of Asian Art

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