JPN 384 • Japanese Literature, Criticism, and Theory
3:00 PM-6:00 PM
In this class, we will read novels and short stories by representative twentieth-century Japanese authors in combination with works of literary criticism written about these works by both Japanese and Western critics and scholars. The focus of the course will be to improve literary reading and analytical skills, and to get a sense of how literary theoreticians and critics in both Japan and the West analyze Japanese literature. We will examine how Japanese literary theory converges or diverges from Western literary theories and test the applicability of Western literary theory to the Japanese context. We will consider how the socio-historical context informs both literary content and secondary criticism. All works will be available in English translation, but students with reading knowledge of Japanese will be encouraged to read in the original.
Weekly contribution (based on translation exercises, personal responses, secondary source presentations, and class participation) = 50% Final paper (15-20 pages) = 50%
Karatani Kojin, Origins of Modern Japanese Literature Washburn, Dennis, The Dilemma of the Modern in Japanese Fiction Fowler, Edward, Rhetoric of Confession: Shishosetsu in Early Twentieth-Century Fiction Fujii, James. Complicit Fictions: The Subject in the Modern Japanese Prose Narrative Suzuki, Tomi. Narrating the Self: Fictions of Japanese Modernity Miyoshi, Masao. Postmodernism and Japan Kobayashi Hideo. Literature of the Lost Home: Kobayashi Hideo-Literary Criticism, 1924-1939