Reminiscence method is a therapeutic treatment that aims to immerse participants in all the senses — sight, touch, taste, smell and sound — so that participants with dementia can remember events, people and places from earlier in their lives.
The reminiscence program adopted by the Showa Era Lifestyle Museum is unique in the way in which it stimulates the minds of participants to feel nostalgic as they remember experiences from earlier in their lives by completing certain actions or interacting with certain items.
Reminiscence method is not only useful in the treatment of mental illnesses, but it can be also be very effectively used to foster and deepen cross-cultural understanding. This means in practice the museum can help groups of people, such as foreigners, to form a meaningful and personal connection even though they may not relate to a specific period in Japanese history. Due to the global expansion of Japanese products in this era, although at first seemingly unlikely participants do and can find points of reminiscence within the museum’s collection. An exchange with a native person is then encouraged to bilaterally explain and discuss the significance of said item. This helps not only understand the other person, but also their culture and the significance that the Showa period holds in modern Japanese society.