Summer 2013 Topical Courses

Last update: March 14, 2013

Art Hist 2097 (811) / As St 2096 (812) Japanese Art and Visual Culture: 1945 to Present

This course examines the development of Japanese art and visual culture in the postwar period. Instead of providing a linear history of formal developments, this course thematically explores some of the major theoretical issues that surround contemporary Japanese art and visual culture. Critical readings will provide social, historical, and political contexts for understanding a broad range of visual cultural practices including art, fashion, design, graphic novels, and films. Through the course we will consider topics such as the question of modernity and the West in Japanese art; underground art and political dissent in the 1960s; the rise of mass culture and design; roles of gender, cuteness, and fantasy; and representations of otherness and the myth of homogeneity.

As St 2000 (811) Manga and Anime in Japanese Popular Culture

The rich and varied world of manga (comics) anime (animation) has produced some of the most important cultural products to appear in Japan in the postwar period, and has established itself as a part of global popular culture. Students are expected to critically examine the themes and representations in works in relation to the historical and socio-cultural contexts of postwar Japan, in order to gain insights into how and why it has gained global significance as a subculture. Through the lens of popular culture and its most devoted fans, the course will examine various issues in Japanese society, running the gamut from race, class and gender to nature, technology and the human. Topics include the art historical origins; the variety of genres and their relation to social and technological development; the birth and evolution of the otaku subculture; the relation of manga and anime to games, TV, cinema and toys in contemporary Japan. The course considers artists from Tezuka Osamu and Miyazaki Hayao to Hagio Moto and Shinbo Akiyuki, Clamp to Shinkai Makoto, Matsumoto Reiji to Otomo Katsuhiro. Students will be view manga and anime both inside and outside of class. The course adopts a hands-on approach to manga and anime, offering guided excursions into areas including Akihabara, Nakano and Ikebukuro. Artists, critics and industry insiders will also visit the class to share their experiences and insights. Students will conduct independent research on some aspect of manga and anime in Japanese popular culture, present their finding to the class and submit a final paper.

As St 2096 (811) / FMA 3696 (811) Contemporary Japanese Film

The course examines developments in Japanese cinema over the past three decades, including the decline of the studios, the rise of the independent film movement, the growing role of minorities and the emergence of a new generation of filmmakers, including Itami Juzo, Kitano Takeshi, Kore'eda Hirokazu, Kurosawa Kiyoshi and Miike Takashi. No previous film course work required.

Japanese 3000 (812) Introduction to Consecutive Interpreting for Non-Native Speakers of Japanese I

This introductory interpreting course is designed for advanced learners of Japanese whose language proficiency level falls somewhere between JLPT N2 and N1 or equivalent. Students will be provided with in-class interpreting exercises to learn how to interpret to English from Japanese, and vice versa.

NMIC 4040 (811) / FMA 4240 (811) Tokyo Stories

The program utilizes New Media technology and Locative Media approaches. The class originated at Temple University Japan, and is part of the New Media Interdisciplinary Concentration major. The goal of the course is to introduce students to the concept of locative media by researching and creating a set of connected annotations about a specific neighborhood of the city. Students will use methods of cultural and visual anthropology to document facets of these neighborhoods with text, pictures and recordings. These place-based annotations will be connected and archived using a variety of digital technologies (primarily the web and mobile telephones). Students will view examples of current "best practices" in locative media, and create group projects that will add to a Temple map archive of urban narratives. Students will create their own narratives from sets of "connected annotations" that define a path through the city.

As St 3030 (811) / Pol Sci 3510 (811) Research Preparation Seminar: Japan's International Relations

The Senkakus, "comfort women", TPP, and the Ospreys, these are just some of the most pressing issues in Japan's international relations. This course aims to facilitate a deeper understanding of such problems by providing a broad overview of Japan's most important international relationships. Particular emphasis is placed on the country's dealings with the United States, China, the two Koreas, and Russia, though attention is also drawn to relations with other regions and international organisations. In so doing, the topics of the regional balance of power, historical memory, and global trade patterns are all brought to the fore. As the focus of international politics continues to shift towards the Asia-Pacific region, this subject of Japan's place in the world is becoming of ever greater significance.

Pol Sci 4320 (811) The International Politics of Energy

Modern society's insatiable demand for energy continues to exert profound effects on international politics. Introducing an epic story that features resource wars, oil curses, and vast flows of petrodollars, this course describes the economic, security, and environmental implications of the unequal global distribution of energy resources (especially oil and gas) and analyzes the impact this has on political relations between consumer, supplier, and transit states. Using case studies for illustration, attention is drawn to the US's long-standing and controversial ties to oil-rich monarchies in the Middle East. Focus also centers on the significant role played by Russia in international energy markets, as well as on the impact of the post-Fukushima energy crisis on Japan's contemporary policies. Looking forward as well as back, this module also asks about the future of international energy, emphasizing the development of renewables, the shale gas revolution, and collapse in support for nuclear.

Psych 4696 (811) The Power of Belief

Beliefs play an essential role in human thoughts, feelings and behaviors and are conceptualized in aspects of human psychology as diverse as emotions, perceptions, attitudes, motivation, superstition, memory accuracy, and conflict resolution, among others. In this capstone course we will explore the omnipresence of belief throughout psychology by examining what beliefs are and how they have been studied throughout the fields of psychology in the past. Class discussions centering around guided writing assignments will facilitate development of your question and subsequent research. To hone your researching skills and broaden your knowledge of psychology, you will independently begin investigating a research question by conducting a literature review. From multiple conceptual, theoretical, and research perspectives, you will synthesize the evidence in an attempt to answer your question while contemplating practical implications of your answer for humans or societies of the world today. Your major assignments for the term will be a 10- to 12-page term paper, written in multiple drafts in APA style, and an oral presentation in which you share your conclusions with your peers.

Wom St 3542 (811) / Psych 3620 (811) / As St 3542 (811) Women and Society in Japan

In this course we will examine the reciprocal relationship between societal expectations and women's responses to social, cultural, and political changes in Japanese society. We will analyze how socio-cultural and political changes shape women's roles in society and explore the roles of women in terms of motherhood, family, and work. We will also examine the situation of women from minority groups such as Buraku, Ainu, Zainichi, and foreign women in Japan, and explore why their voices are silenced in contemporary Japanese society. The course will also explore contemporary gender-related social issues, such as reproductive health and the rights of women, prostitution, trafficking in persons, and domestic violence.