Schedule (Spring 2016)

Please note that this schedule may change. To receive confirmation of the time, location, and itinerary for upcoming meetings and events via email, please contact the organizers and request to join the mailing list.

1. Friday, February 12, 2016, 4-5:30p in the IEAS conference room (5th floor of 1995 University Avenue, at intersection of Milvia St and University Ave): Discussion of spring semester plans and academic book reviews/recommendations

In addition to discussing plans for the semester ahead, we invite you to discuss any Japan-focused academic works that you’ve excited about—something you’ve read recently, or that you’re hoping to read soon—over food and drinks.

2. Thursday, February 25, 2016, 5-8p: Women grads doing research in Japan meetup (co-organized by Lisa Reade and Valerie Black)

This is a special event for women grads to share guidance, ask questions, and swap stories about doing research and fieldwork in Japan.

3. Friday March 11, 2016, 4:30-6p in the IEAS conference room (5th floor of 1995 University Avenue, at intersection of Milvia St and University Ave): A Disability of the Soul discussion (in advance of meeting w/Karen Nakamura)

The working group will meet to discuss Prof. Karen Nakamura’s book A Disability of the Soul over food and drinks.

4. Wednesday, March 16, 2016, 5:30-7p in the IEAS conference room (5th floor of 1995 University Avenue, at intersection of Milvia St and University Ave): Conversation w/anthropologist Karen Nakamura

Continuing our discussion from the previous meeting, this meeting is an opportunity to share thoughts and questions in conversation with Karen Nakamura— food and drinks provided.

5. Friday, April 8, 2016, 4:30-6p in the IEAS conference room (5th floor of 1995 University Avenue, at intersection of Milvia St and University Ave):

Read and discuss the chapter “Using Japan to Think Globally:
The Natural Subject of History and Its Hopes” in Japan at Nature’s Edge: The Environmental Context of a Global Power, by historian Julia Adeney Thomas (University of Notre Dame). (Available electronically via oaskicat.) Accompanying the conversation, there will be matcha tea service provided by working group member Ryosuke Ueda.

6. Friday & Saturday, April 22-23. 2016: Third annual CJS conference “Embodied Health, Embodied Knowledge”

Organized and featuring talks by several working group members, this conference brings together Japan Studies graduate students from across the country and around the world for two days of panels, workshops, and a keynote talk: http://cjsgradconference2016.weebly.com

In addition to the conference programming, there all also be two concurrent lunchtime workshops for Berkeley Japan Studies grads on Friday with keynote Noriko Horiguchi (University of Tennessee) and discussant Sabine Fruhstuck (UC Santa Barbara). To register: workshop registration form

7. Friday, May 6, 2016, 3-4:30p in Doe Library room 308A: “The Origins of Japanese Comics, 1905-28” Talk by Andrea Horbinski, Ph.D. Candidate, UC Berkeley Department of History (organized by the Asian Art and Visual Culture Working Group & co-sponsored by the Japan Studies Working Group)

Between 1905 and 1928 manga emerged as a separate artistic medium in Japan in reaction to ponchie, a populist hybrid art form that flourished in the early and mid-Meiji period (1868 – 1912). The pioneers of manga, self-consciously elitist in the vein of Fukuzawa Yukichi’s (1835 – 1901) philosophy of “civilization and enlightenment” (bunmei kaika), wished to create a higher-class art form that could, and did, depict exclusively political content. This early vision of manga as consisting of only political satire did not survive the economic fortunes of World War I, and its collapse, therefore, has profound implications for the history of Japanese comics as a whole. Only by expanding the scope of manga beyond political satire was the medium able to survive and flourish in the Taishō (1912 – 1926) and Shōwa (1926 – 1989) periods.

8. May 2016 (date & time TBD): Guided visit to BAMPFA led by art history graduate student and working group member Stephanie Hohlios

Some additional not-to-be-missed events this semester:

-Feb. 26-27, 2016: Symposium: “The Poetics of Friendship in Early Modern and Modern East Asia,” co-organized by some fantastic UC Berkeley students, including the working group’s own Brendan Morley: http://poeticsoffriendship.weebly.com

-April 29, 2016: talk by Julia Adeney Thomas, organized by Prof. Alan Tansman (RSVP required- if you haven’t already received an invitation and are interested in attending, please contact Alan Tansman ASAP.)

Past meetings: Fall 2015 Schedule

1. Friday, August 28th 2015, 4:30pm in the IEAS conference room (5th floor of 1995 University Avenue, at intersection of Milvia St and University Ave), pizza and drinks provided: Introduction of members and their research interests, discussion of Japan Studies at UC Berkeley and beyond. Overview of the working group and its plans for the year ahead. Assign chapters from Bad Water to read for Oct. 2nd meeting.

2. Friday, September 11th, 2015, 5pm in the IEAS conference room (5th floor of 1995 University Avenue, at intersection of Milvia St and University Ave): Members examine recent academic publications in their respective fields and briefly present on how Japan is presented, engaged with, studied, etc.
READINGS: 1-2 articles/reviews in major academic journals representing your discipline.

3. Friday, September 18th, 2015, 4pm in Doe Library, room 180: CJS Bakai event and post-event drinks with working group members.

4. Friday, October 9th, 2015, 5pm in the IEAS conference room (5th floor of 1995 University Avenue, at intersection of Milvia St and University Ave): Discuss Stolz’s _Bad Water_.
READINGS: introduction, conclusion, and assigned chapters.

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5. Thursday, October 15th, 2015, 4:30pm, Dwinelle room 3335: “Environmental Pollution and the Crisis of the Liberal State in Meiji Japan,” talk by Robert Stolz (sponsored by the Department of History) and post-talk dinner for working group members (sponsored by CJS).

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6. Friday, November 6th, 2015, 5pm, IEAS conference room: What the Rest Think of the Wesbt: Japan
READINGS: What the Rest Think of the West: Since 600 AD (Each member may select one or two chapters– or more– of interest from “Part Four: Japanese Travelers and Their Observations” to read and discuss.)

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  • “From The Record of a Pilgrimage to China in Search of the Law” – Ennin
  • “From A Secret Plan of Government and Tales of the West” – Honda Toshiaki
  • “From As We Saw Them: The First Japanese Embassy to the United States” – Masao Miyoshi
  • “From The Autobiography of Yukichi Fukuzawa” – Fukuzawa Yukichi
  • “Why Security Treaty?” – Yuzuru Katagiri
  • “Japan and the United States: Partners or Master and Servant?” – Shintaro Ishihara

7. Friday, November 13th, 2015, 5pm, IEAS conference room: What the Rest Think of the West: Japan (discussion cont.)

8. Friday, December 4th, 2015, 2pm, SF Asian Art Museum: Group visit to the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco to view the special exhibit “Looking East” (complimentary tickets provided by the museum’s education program).