Tag: Alexander Leavitt

AX 2015 Anime and Manga Studies Symposium – Final Schedule

The full schedule for this year’s AX Anime and Manga Studies Symposium, the Academic Program track at Anime Expo, the largest anime/manga convention in North America, has now been finalized. This year’s Symposium consists of four plenary addresses, a special roundtable discussion, and 12 individual presentations on various topics related to anime/manga, with a total of 18 speakers from colleges and universities in the U.S., Canada, Austria, Belgium/France, and Japan. The sessions will be spread out over all four days of Anime Expo 2015, and will all be held in the Theater (Room 411) of the Los Angeles Convention Center.

The 2015 Anime and Manga Studies Symposium program is also available as a separate page.
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AX 2015 Academic Program / AX Anime and Manga Studies Symposium

Anime Expo 2015
Los Angeles Convention Center (Room 411 / AX Live Programming 4)
Los Angeles, California
July 2-5

Thursday, July 2

5:15 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Introduction: Anime and Manga Studies at AX and in 2015
Mikhail Koulikov

5:30 p.m. – 6:45 p.m.
Panel Session
Critical Approaches to Japanese Animation and Comics

  • The Beautiful End of the World: Eschatologies of the Bishojo

Many of the most iconic characters in anime/manga are young women directly associated with apocalyptic and posthuman themes. Cultural critics have highlighted the parallels between these bishojo and motifs related to freedom, flight, hope, and healing, so it is interesting that often, they are also closely connected to themes of human extinction. I argue that, through the regenerative capacity of such characters, whose emerging sexuality is not yet tainted by masculine bodies and masculinist ideologies such as nationalism, militarism, and scientific rationalism, anime/manga present the “end of the world” as positive event that promises ecological balance and emotional serenity.

Kathryn Hemmann (George Mason University)

  • Stories in Shades of Black and White: Use of Color in CLAMP’s Manga

Many Western comics depend on color, shading, and delicate variations in inking techniques to tell their stories, Japanese manga must create a visually compelling narrative with only black and white. Yet, many manga use significantly fewer inking techniques than standard Western comics. I compare techniques described by famed inker Klaus Janson for Western comics with those in three works by CLAMP in markedly different styles and targeted at different audiences By creating their aesthetic based on the tone and message of a specific work, CLAMP creates synergy between the narrative and visuals, integrating the disparate elements of the page, and transmitting a sense of depth in a manner entirely distinct from Western comics.

Mia Lewis (Stanford University) (more…)

AX 2015 Anime and Manga Studies Symposium – Speakers and Talk Titles

I am pleased to announce the final program for the 2015 AX Anime and Manga Studies Symposium, the Anime Expo 2015 Academic Program. AX 2015 will be held at the Los Angeles Convention Center (Los Angeles, California), from July 2 to July 5, and the Symposium will be spread out over all four days.

The Symposium will feature a keynote address by a leading scholar and teacher, three special guest lectures/presentations, 13 individual talks on a wide range of topics related to Japanese animation and comics, organized into several topical panels, and a roundtable discussion on major issues in teaching about Japanese popular culture and using anime and manga in the classroom. Its main goal remains to highlight new critical approaches to Japanese popular visual culture, but the Symposium also serves a major educational function. It introduces AX’s attendees to the ideas and practices of the academic study of anime and manga, while giving speakers a unique opportunity to present their work to a general audience.

Keynote Address: The Importance of Anime at Film School: Tales from USC

Ellen SeiterEllen Seiter
Professor of Critical Studies
Stephen K. Nenno Chair of Television Studies
University of Southern California

Prof. Seiter teaches courses on television and new media history, theory and criticism, as well as the new new Japanese Anime class, in the in the Critical Studies Division of the USC School of Cinematic Arts. Books she has written include The Creative Artist’s Legal Guide:Copyright, Trademark and Contracts in Film and Digital Media Production (2012), The Internet Playground: Children’s Access, Entertainment and Mis-Education (2005), Television and New Media Audiences (1999), Sold Separately: Children and Parents in Consumer Culture (1993) and Remote Control; Television, Audiences and Cultural Power (1989). (more…)

Anime and Manga Symposium Archives – 2012

After the success of the first Anime and Manga Studies Symposium at the 2011 Anime Expo, it was clear that the idea of academic presentations included in the program of a major American anime convention was something that fans were ready to welcome. So, in the spring of 2012, I began planning to repeat the Symposium at AX 2012, and when the convention opened its doors, was able to welcome a new group of scholars, representing institutions from around the U.S., as well as two European schools, to the Symposium.

AX 2012 Anime and Manga Studies Symposium – Schedule

Friday, June 29

Keynote Address: Jeffrey Dym (Professor, History, California State University, Sacramento)

Adventures in teaching ‘The History of Manga’


Anime and Manga Symposium Archives – 2011

By 2011, anime and manga studies as an academic field was definitely coming into its own, with a number of books, dozens of classes, an annual conference (Schoolgirls and Mobilesuits, at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design), and even an annual journal dedicated to “anime, manga and the fan arts”. What anime and manga studies did not have, though, was a way to present the academic field to non-academic audiences – to connect anime/manga scholars with anime and manga fans. And it was here that I saw both a niche, a need, and a market gap – and tried to fill it.

So, in the winter of 2011, I approached the senior officers of the Society for the Promotion of Japanese Animation, the non-profit corporate parent of the Anime Expo convention, with a proposal to organize, produce and manage a track of academic presentations and panel discussions that would be a part of the AX 2011 program. A lot of my proposal was based on enthusiasm and hopeful thinking, but in making the proposal, I was drawing on examples for Schoolgirls and Mobilesuits, the Comic Arts Conference track of San Diego Comic-Con, and the easily dozens of papers on various aspects of anime and manga that had been presented over the years at academic conferences, seminars and workshops around the U.S. In fact, as early as 2004, the Anime Boston convention had incorporated a session of formal academic presentations into its panel programming schedule – and if they could do it, I could certainly try to adjust the program for scale and expand it over the length four days of AX 2011. (more…)