The phrase “Japanese popular culture” often calls to mind comics and animation, but Japan’s earliest visual pop culture dates back to the 17th century and the development of arts like kabuki theater and woodblock prints that could be produced for a mass audience. This course traces Japanese popular culture through a range of visual media: kabuki and puppet theater, premodern and postmodern visual art (ukiyoe, Superflat), classic film (Ozu, Mizoguchi, Kurosawa), manga/comics (Tezuka, Otomo, Okazaki), and animation (Oshii, Miyazaki, Kon). We will focus on developing visual reading skills to come up with original interpretations of these works, and on comparing different media to make them shed light on one another.
The Class: Format: lecture/discussion
Requirements/Evaluation: attendance, participation, two 5-page papers, final exam
Extra Info: may not be taken on a pass/fail basis
Enrollment Preferences: students majoring or considering a major in a related discipline
Distributions: Division I
Notes: meets Division 1 requirement if registration is under ASST