ASIA 321
A Global History of Manga and Anime Spring 2024
Division II
Cross-listed HIST 321
This is not the current course catalog

Class Details

Japanese comic books and cartoons are known throughout the world by their Japanese names: “manga” and “anime.” This is no accident, but a reflection of their enormous global popularity. Why are they so popular? How can we use them as historical sources for Japanese history and society? What do they reveal about the place of Japan in today’s global culture? How did these two phenomena emerge and develop, and how do they influence each other? This class will explore these and other related questions through readings, screenings, discussion, and original research. It will trace the evolution of manga and anime from traditional Japanese (kibyoshi, ukyo-e and kawaraban) and western (comic strips and Disney films) influences, and the explosion of their popularity after World War II. We will use manga and anime, especially “girls'” (shojo) anime and manga as windows onto the intersection of Japanese and global society, economy and politics.
The Class: Format: seminar
Limit: 25
Expected: 20
Class#: 3865
Grading: yes pass/fail option, yes fifth course option
Requirements/Evaluation: class participation (assessed weekly), weekly prep/response assignments (12 total), 8-9 page research and class-reading based essays (2 total), original research presentation for final assignment (1 total).
Prerequisites: None
Enrollment Preferences: HIST majors, ASIA concentration students, then everyone else
Distributions: Division II
Notes: This course is cross-listed and the prefixes carry the following divisional credit:
ASIA 321 Division II HIST 321 Division II

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