info@IESabroad.orgAN343 MANGA AND ANIME: DIGITAL CULTURE IN CONTEMPORARY JAPANIES Tokyo SyllabusDESCRIPTION
As an anthropological study of Japanese popular culture, this course explores themeaningful dimensions of Japanese manga (comics) and animation, known collectively as “anime.” Anime is one of the most important culture products of postwar Japan, and is today one of the mostcelebrated global phenomena that affects the collective imagination of many of people throughout theworld, especially youngsters. This course will trace the historical trajectory of anime, while uncoveringthe mechanism in which popular characters and fantastic stories are created in a form of contemporaryfolklore. The course will also cover theoretical issues as it approaches overarching themes such asfantasy, semiosis, metamorphosis, selfhood, idolatry, fandom, eroticism and the romantic. Theseissues will be examined in relationship with prominent producers including Osamu Tezuka, HayaoMiyazaki, and Rumiko Takahashi, and the system of production that they instituted. Some classes areplanned outside classroom, where proper fieldworks can be conducted. (3 credits)
LANGUAGE OF PRESENTATION
English, with Japanese vocabulary
REQUIRED WORK AND FORM OF ASSESSMENT
Class Participation (10%): Students will be evaluated on the bases of how professionally they couldparticipate in class discussions and demonstrate their understanding of the subjects that arecovered in the course.2)
Journals (15%): Two journal entries during the coursework, three to five pages each.3)
Field Study Reports (15%): Two reports (two to three pages each).4)
Research Proposal (25%): Three to six page research summary of the student’s research theme.5)
Research Paper (35%): One 10-15 page paper on proposed research theme.
Introduction to the course: What is anime? Why study anime?PART ONE: Historical Trajectory2.
The development of manga during ancient and classic periods3.
Edo and Meiji caricatures4.
The role of anime in the formation of pictocentric culture of postwar Japan
Journal 1 due
PART TWO: Prominent Anthropological Themes in the Study of Anime5.
The religiosity of anime: fetishism, idolatry and symbolic production6.
Anime as Japanese youth subculture7.
Field Study 1: Exploring the Comic Market of Akihabara (Date/Time TBA)8.
The romantic and the erotic: gender and sexuality in Japanese anime subculture
Field Study Report 1 due
Ethnicity and nationality in Japanese animationPART THREE: The Field of Anime Production10.
Case Study #5: examining the ethnography of pop culture (2): Jennifer Robertson’s work onTakarazuka all-female theater: thinking about the popular cultural representations of gender, sex,and sexuality
Journal 2 due
The shadow economy of anime fans12.
Anime and globalization: Japanese fantasies abroad
Research Proposal due
Field Study 2: Pilgrimage through Ghibli Museum, Mitaka (Date/Time TBA)
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