Category: Programs

Communicating with Cool Japan (Int’l Communication Association Pre-Conference)

conf2016A few months ago, I was glad to participate in distributing the Call for Papers for Communicating with Cool Japan: New International Perspectives on Japanese Popular Culture, a one-day mini-conference that would run in Tokyo, at Waseda University, on June 8, just ahead of (and in connection with) the 66th annual conference of the International Communication Association. The preliminary schedule for this event, has now been announced.

As the schedule currently stands, it will consist of a keynote address presented by Prof. Koichi Iwabuchi (Monash University), and a total of 9 sessions, running simultaneously (2/3 at a time), each organized around a common theme.

The themes that the sessions will address are:

  • What We Live For: Women, Expression, and Empowerment in Japanese Fan Cultures
  • Methodologies of Cultural Power
  • Image/Text
  • Audience Studies, Otaku, and Fan Cultures
  • Institutionalization and Nostalgia
  • Discontented Japanization
  • The Living Popular
  • Digital Productions: Distribution, Piracy, and Globalization
  • Localization, Adaptation, and Hybridization

These sessions will feature a total of 39 individual presentations, and speakers from Australia, Brazil, Canada, Hungary, Japan, Kazakhstan, New Zealand, Norway, Philippines, Singapore, Spain, Taiwan, Thailand, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Given the mini-conference’s broad focus on “any area of Japanese popular culture”, not all of them address anime/manga, but, many do:

Session 1.2: Methodologies of Cultural Power
10:20 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

Why hasn’t Japan banned child-porn comics?”: An Investigation into the Socio-legal Attitudes towards Yaoi Manga

Simon Turner (Chulalongkorn University)

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Meiji University “Cool Japan” Summer Program (July 20 – August 5)

Cool Japan 2016Individual classes on anime/manga offered by colleges of all types around the U.S. are nothing new. But, what kinds of options are there for students who are interested in learning about topics related to Japanese visual culture – in Japan? One such option is the Cool Japan Summer Program, which has been offered annually since 2010 by Tokyo’s Meiji University. The application period for this year’s program is now open, and applications are being accepted until February 29.

“Meiji University’s Cool Japan Summer Program is a series of lectures and field trips on a wide variety of subjects relating to Japan’s contemporary images – from manga, anime and music, to fashion, craftsmanship and cuisine. We invite you to discuss many issues of “Japan” with some of the leading researchers and professionals of each field. Let us look into the essence of Japanese pop culture while exploring is current social context and future potential. We will investigate diverse aspects of Japanese society and uncover their underlying traditional elements.”

The program itself will run from Wednesday, July 20, to Friday, August 5, with a total of over 50 hours of content. Particular highlights will include a tour of the J.C. Staff animation studio (Azumanga Daioh, Ikki Tousen, Nodame Cantable, Ano Natsu de Matteru/Waiting in the Summer, among others), and a three-day trip outside Tokyo. It will be limited to 30 participants, who must be enrolled in an undergraduate or graduate program at the time. Participating speakers will include faculty members from several Japanese universities, journalists, translators, and industry professionals. Although Meiji University will not award students any credit for participation, their own individual “home” institutions may. No knowledge of Japanese is required to participate.

Further addition information about the Cool Japan Summer Program, including a brochure and promotional video, is available on the program website.

[Ed.: For the last two years, Tokyo University has offered a similar summer program. Both years, the program’s schedule was focused around a common theme (2014 – “Media Mix“; 2015 – “Mediated Worlds“), and participants in the programs were not charged for their participation, and received reimbursement for their travel expenses and a stipend for accommodations and personal expenses. However, the 2015 program was specifically designed for graduate students. A 2016 program has not been announced as of yet.)

Introduction to Anime & Manga Studies @ Waku Waku +NYC

Waku-Waku-LogoWaku Waku +NYC, the new “Japanese pop culture festival”, will be held this weekend (August 29-30) in New York City, in various locations in Brooklyn. More than just an anime convention, it will include screenings, talks, performances, a fashion show, interactive events, and concerts spread out several locations in Brooklyn.

I am delighted to be able to contribute to this festival by presenting the session “Introduction to anime and manga studies”. This will run on Sunday, August 30, at 11:30 a.m., at the Wythe Hotel (80 Wythe Avenue).

Introduction to Anime and Manga Studies

Mikhail Koulikov
Prof. Kathryn Hemmann
Prof. Shige (CJ) Suzuki

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‘Manga at a Crossroads’ Symposium

On March 6 and April 4, The Ohio State University’s East Asian Studies Center will present Manga at a Crossroads, a two-day symposium on manga as a major form of Japanese popular culture, with influence and impact world-wide. The symposium’s first session will focus on the origins, history and development of manga; the second will examine its global reach. Both sessions will feature talks by leading scholars of Japanese popular culture from around the U.S., Canada, and Great Britain, and are designed to run in connection with the exhibit World of Shojo Manga!: Mirrors of Girls’ Desires, which will be hosted by OSU’s Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum from March 28 to July 15. (more…)

‘Globalized Manga Culture and Fandom’ Mini-Symposium

Globalized Manga CultureThis month, Baruch College (New York) will host the art exhibition “World of Shojo Manga: Mirrors of Girls’ Desires”. In conjunction with the exhibition, the college will also present a one-day “mini-symposium” on certain aspects of Japanese comics and their worldwide reception.

Globalized Manga Culture and Fandom

Thursday, February 19, 12:40 p.m. – 2:20 p.m.

Baruch College Vertical Campus

55 Lexington Avenue, 5th Floor, Room 165

Speakers:

  • Masami Toku (Professor, Art and Art History, California State University, Chico)

The focus of Prof. Toku’s research is on the effect of popular visual culture, including manga, on children’s art artistic development, and the potential for the use of manga in art education. She is also one of the organizers of the touring exhibition series Shojo Manga! Girls’ Power! (2005-2006) which was presented at various locations around the U.S. and Canada, including the University of New Mexico, Columbia College Chicago, Pratt Institute, the Japanese Canadian National Museum (Burnaby, British Columbia, and the Japan Exhibition and Culture Center at the Embassy of Japan (Washington, DC).

  • Kathryn Hemmann (Assistant Professor, Modern and Classical Languages, George Mason University)

Prof. Hemmann teaches Japanese culture and Japanese literature, and has presented on topics related to Japanese comics extensively, including at the AX Anime and Manga Studies Symposium, where she has spoken on the concept of the “female gaze” in contemporary Japanese anime and manga. She is also the author of the blog Contemporary Japanese Literature, and is currently working on a book-length project to be entitled “Writing Women Readers: The Female Gaze in Contemporary Japanese Narrative Media”.

Vertical, Inc., based in New York City, is a leading publisher of English translations of contemporary Japanese literature, including non-fiction (The Toyota Leaders: An Executive Guide, Nintendo Magic: Winning the Videogame Wars), novels (Parasite Eve, The Summer of the Ubume), and manga (Chi’s Sweet Home, Paradise Kiss, Sakuran, Twin Spica).

This event is free and open to the public, but registration is required.

Manga and the Manga-esque: New Perspectives to a Global Culture

Manga and the Manga-EsqueThe Japanese Studies Program at Ateneo de Manila University (Manila, Philippines) has unveiled the full schedule for Manga and the Manga-esque: New Perspectives to a Global Culture, the program’s 15th Annual International Conference on Japanese Studies. The conference will be held at Ateneo de Manila University on January 22 and 23, 2015, and this year, it will receive support from the Women’s MANGA Research Project (Chikushi Jogakuen University) and also serve as the project’s 6th Women’s Manga Conference. Accordingly, the conference will significantly emphasize manga in general and manga’s female readers in particular both in Japan and in other Southeast Asian countries, including Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam and Thailand.

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Call for Proposals – ‘Queers and Comics’

Queers and Comics: LGBT Cartoonists’ Conference
New York, NY – May 7-8, 2015

Queers & Comics brings LGBTQ cartoonists, comics writers, and artists together with scholars and fans in order to document the history and significance of queer comics. This conference spotlights the veterans of LGBTQ cartooning in North America and internationally, with forums for working artists to share their knowledge and to discuss how to navigate the comics industry.”

The conference welcomes submissions for “workshops, readings, presentations, portfolio reviewers, and preformed roundtables (with a minimum of 3 discussants) as well as proposals by individual roundtable discussants” on any topic related to the general theme of “how queer comics reflect and critique queer culture”. Manga and anime are specifically highlighted as possible topics for proposals.

Proposal requirements:

– Description of proposal (250 words or less)
– Biographical info (100 words or less) or one-page CV for each participant
– Audio-Visual requests

Proposal deadline: November 3, 2014

 

Manga Futures – 6th Int’l Scholarly Conference

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 – Schedule (more…)

The Graphic Novel – 3rd Global Conference (Sep. 3-5)

Over any given year, scholars who are interested in presenting their work on comics (including manga) at academic conferences have several options available to them. The San Diego Comic-Con hosts its annual Comic Arts Conference. Mechademia: Conference on Asian Popular Culture (originally launched as Schoolgirls and Mobilesuits: Culture and Creation in Manga and Anime) is another well-known project. The University of Florida’s Comics Studies program also organizes an annual Conference on Comics and Graphic Novels, as does the Canadian Society for the Study of Comics. And the Popular Culture Association actively encourages scholars to submit papers on “all aspects of the medium” for presentation at its annual conference under the Comics and Comic Art area.

Recently, I found out about another academic conference that may be of interested to anyone working with Japanese comics. Starting in 2012, Inter-Disciplinary.net  has been organizing an annual The Graphic Novel conference, held every September on the campus of University of Oxford’s Mansfield College. (more…)

University of Michigan Lecture/Workshop: More Information

Later this week, the University of Michigan Center for Japanese Studies will be hosting two programs on aspects of Japanese popular culture and its reception both in Japan and around the world. On Thursday, April 3, Mark McLelland will present a lecture on ‘debates around fictional child characters in Japanese popular culture’. As announced earlier this month, following this, on Saturday, April 5, a group of leading scholars will participate in a one-day workshop on specific ethical, legal, political, cultural and other challenges that Japanese popular culture as a field or area of inquiry presents for teachers at all levels, researchers, and students.

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