Manga FuturesThe University of Wollongong and the International Manga Research Center (Kyoto Seika University) have unveiled the full schedule for this year’s Manga Futures: Institutional and Fan Approaches in Japan and Beyond academic conference. This event will be held at the University of Wollongong, Australia, from October 31 to November 2. It will bring together leading scholars of Japanese comics from around the world for an intensive schedule of keynote and plenary addresses, interviews, and individual presentations arranged in several topical streams, with the broad goal of examining the full scope of “manga culture” and the production, distribution and consumption of Japanese comics. Some of the specific themes the conference’s Call for Papers highlighted included:

• Fan appropriations of and contributions to manga culture in Japan and beyond
• Commonalities and differences in fandom-based creation and criticism between Japan and other countries
• Ethical and legal challenges in the production and consumption of manga (copyright, representations of violent and sexual content, potential fictional “child abuse” images etc.)
• Institutional support for or criticism of manga culture
• The use of manga in Japan studies and Japan language pedagogy
• The future of “manga studies” – theory and methods

Manga Futures 2014 – ScheduleFriday, October 31

Manga Futures Postgraduate Workshop

Saturday, November 1, 2014

10 a.m. – 10:45 a.m.

Keynote Address
Chair: Mark McLelland (ARC Future Fellow, University of Wollongong)

Censoring Manga in the 21st Century
Kirsten Cather (Associate Professor of Asian Studies, University of Texas at Austin)

In 2002, for the first time in Japan’s history, a manga was successfully prosecuted for violating obscenity law in a high-profile trial that ultimately reached the nation’s Supreme Court in 2007. In my talk, I discuss this unprecedented case against the erotic manga Misshitsu (Honey room) and its implications for the future regulation of manga. [abstract]

11 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Plenary Panel
Chair: Jaqueline Berndt (Professor, Manga/Comics Theory, Kyoto Seika University)

  • Gender and Manga Representation of Sexuality: Focusing on Female Readers in Japan
    Yukari Fujimoto, Meiji University
    [abstract – Japanese]
  • Manga Under Siege: The Legal Framework, Arguments Against “Pornographic Manga” in Japan, and Strategies For Resistance
    Takashi Yamaguchi
    This paper analyzes the recent anti-child pornography bill as well as the promoters’ position from the perspective of a lawyer who has been involved in numerous manga-related legal cases. [abstract]

12 p.m. – 1 p.m.

Between Ignorance and Cant: Finding a Way to Analyze Ero-Manga
Tadahiro Saika and Kaworu Nagayama

Taking the form of a conversation between an experienced manga critic and an academic researcher, this talk focuses on the traditionally male-oriented genre of ero-manga as an example of Japanese comics sidelined within manga studies. [abstract]

2:15 p.m. – 3:45 p.m.

Plenary Panel: Legal Issues and Censorship
Chair: James Welker

  • The End of “Cool Japan”? Ethical, Legal, Political and Cultural Challenges for Japanese Popular Culture Researchers and Teachers
    Mark McLelland (ARC Future Fellow, University of Wollongong)
    In this presentation I ask what role, if any, do we as educators have in alerting students to the problematic nature of studying, consuming, producing and disseminating images of a sexualised nature? [abstract]
  • Canada Customs vs. the Borderless World: Manga, Anime and Child Pornography
    Sharalyn Orbaugh (Professor, Asian Studies, University of British Columbia)
    This presentation will examine the legal status of manga and anime products that are considered by Canadian law to constitute child pornography, even though they do not depict any actual children. [abstract]
  • A Love That Dare Not Speak Its Name Aloud: Chinese Boys’ Love Fandom in the 2014 ‘Cleaning the Web’ Campaign
    Ling Yang and Yanrui Xu

4 p.m. – 5 p.m.

Artist Talk
Picturing Manga’s Future in a Global World
Keiko Takemiya (President, Kyoto Seika University)

5 p.m. – 5:45 p.m.

Keynote Address 2
Chair: Vera Mackie, Senior Professor, Asian Studies, University of Wollongong

Manga Studies as a Field of Scholarship: Present Constraints and Future Prospects
Jaqueline Berndt (Professor, Manga/Comics Theory, Kyoto Seika University)

Contrasting manga studies as conducted at IMRC with manga research in Japanese studies outside of Japan, this paper sketches methodological issues crucial to the future of that emergent field. [abstract]

Sunday, November 2

9:30 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.

Concurrent Panels Session

Session 1a: Manga and War
Chair: Kirsten Cather (Associate Professor of Asian Studies, University of Texas at Austin)

  • Censoring Gen: An Examination of Attempts to Remove Barefoot Gen from Japanese School Libraries
    Ronald Stewart (Associate Professor, Life Sciences, Hiroshima Prefectural University)
  • Reading Manga in the Discourse of Popular Memory: The Analysis of Animalization and the Grotesque in War Manga
    Kaori Yoshida (Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University)

Session 1b: MoePolitics
Chair: Rowena Ward (Lecturer, Japanese, University of Wollongong)

  • “Moe” Politics : The structural Friction Between Society and Corporeality/Immortality Form of Character
    Yuzuru Nakagawa
  • Moe and the Limits of the Cute
    Keith Russell (Senior Lecturer, Design, Communication and Information Technology, University of Newcastle)

10:45 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.

Concurrent Panels Session

Session 2a: Cultural Economies
Chair: Kristine Michelle Santos (University of Wollongong)

  • Dojinshi and Other Fanworks as an Upcoming Growth Area for Transcultural Cultural Economies
    Nele Noppe (University of Leuven)
  • After the Boom: The Impact of Anime-Manga Fan Culture in Hungary on the Wider Geek Culture and its Subcultural Producers
    Zoltan Kacsuk (Corvinus University of Budapest)
  • Negotiating Religious and Fan Identities: Yaoi and Fujoshi Guilt
    Jessica Sugimoto
    This paper takes a look at the personal narratives and negotiations fan devise to be able to balance these two conflicting aspects of their identity. [abstract]

Session 2b: Representation of Outsiders
Chair: Thomas Baudinette (Monash University)

  • Close Encounter: The Online “Amateur” Manga About International Marriage My Lovely Chinese Wife by Inoue Jun’ichi’
    Shigeru Suzuki (Assistant Professor, Modern Languages and Comparative Literature, Baruch College)
  • Ethical and Philosophical Challenges of George Akiyama: Ashura, Zeni Geba and Manga Culture in the 1970s
    Kotaro Nakagaki (Daito Bunka University)
  • Beyond Individual Authorship: New Perspectives for a Multilayered Analysis of Manga and Anime
    Oliver Kuehne (Freie Universitat Berlin)

1:30 p.m. – 3 p.m.

Concurrent Panels Session:

Session 3: Fannish Subversion
Chair: Rebecca Suter (Senior Lecturer, Japanese Studies, University of Sydney)

  • The Power of Trunks-ation: Conflation and Subversion in Dragon Ball Z Abridged
    Michelle Kent
  • Even a Monkey Can Understand Fan Activism: Bill 156 and the Dōjin Public
    Andrea Horbinski (University of California, Berkeley)The author published an earlier version of this paper (co-authored with Alex Leavitt) in the scholarly journal Transformative Works and Cultures, and presented it at the 2012 AX Anime and Manga Studies Symposium.
  • The Poetics of Boys Love: Transfiguring Masculinities in Yaoi Parodies of Final Fantasy VII
    Kathryn Hemmann (Assistant Professor, Japanese Studies, George Mason University)

Session 4: Shojo Manga
Chair: Vera Mackie (Senior Professor, Asian Studies, University of Wollongong)

  • Little Ladies: The Aesthetics of Shōjo Manga and their Incorporation into the Lolita Fashion Style
    Megan Russel
  • Valiant and Beautiful: Rethinking Gender and Aesthetics in Shōjo Manga
    Masafumi Monden (Research Assistant, Public Communication Program, University of Technology, Sydney)
  • Shōjo Manga Presenting Taboos and the Future: Incest and Women
    Fusami Ogi (Associate Professor, English Language and Literature, Chikushi Jogakuen University)

3 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.

Plenary Panel: Whose Queer Media?
Chair: Sharalyn Orbaugh (Professor, Asian Studies, University of British Columbia)

  • An Examination of the Diverse Fandom of the Cross-Media Yuri Genre
    James Welker (Associate Professor, Cross-Cultural Studies, Kanagawa University)
    Drawing on commercial and fan-produced media and observation at fan events, in this paper I examine how yuri fandom is defined in yuri media and other contexts. I consider parallels and overlaps with BL fandom, as well as the coexistence of gender and sexual minority and heterosexual fans, and how this shapes both yuri fandom and the narratives themselves. [abstract]

3: 45 p.m. – 5:15 p.m.

Plenary Panel: Manga Culture and Japanese Studies
Chair: Mark McLelland (ARC Future Fellow, University of Wollongong)

  • Death Note, Student Crimes, and the Power of Universities in the Global Domination of Manga
    Alisa Freedman (Associate Professor, Japanese Literature and Film, University of Oregon)
    My paper explores the moral, ethical, and cultural issues of teaching Japanese popular culture and the fandoms it inspires through the trans-medial example of Death Note (Desu nōto). [abstract]
  • Scholar Girl Meets Manga Maniac, Media Specialist, and Cultural Gatekeeper
    Laura Miller (Eiichi Shibusawa-Seigo Arai Endowed Professor of Japanese Studies and Professor of Anthropology, University of Missouri – St. Louis)
    Manga fans, manga specialists, and cultural gatekeepers present distinct challenges and opportunities for Japan Studies scholars who want to include manga and anime in their research and teaching. [abstract]
  • Is there Room for Lolicon in Cool Japan
    Patrick Galbraith (Duke University)
    The paper asks if there is room in Cool Japan for lolicon, or, to put it another way, is there room in the study of popular culture for unpopular topics? What are the ethical implications of such a study? [abstract]

In addition, the University of Wollongong will host a “Protean Borders: Transcultural Encounters with Japanese Culture” art exhibit, featuring artists from Japan, Korea, and Australia, and a ‘creating manga’ workshop aimed at high school students.

Registration details for the conference will be announced on October 20.

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