Carnegie Mellon University

Yoshihiro Yasuhara

Yoshihiro Yasuhara

Associate Teaching Professor of Japanese Studies

  • Posner Hall 244
  • 412-268-7860
Department of Languages, Cultures & Applied Linguistics
4980 Margaret Morrison St
Posner Hall 341
Pittsburgh, PA 15213


Ph.D., Comparative Literature, Pennsylvania State University
M.A., Comparative Literature, University of Georgia


My primary research has involved two areas of interest that center on the relationship between aesthetic and social realities, all situated in the discipline of comparative literature studies with a focus on Japanese culture in the modern transnational context.

The first research interest examines Ishikawa's search for a locus of literary reality as an alternative to the preexisting historiography of modern Japan, arguing that the literature of Ishikawa, as a key case of modern Japanese literature, reflects his social commitment by his literary experiments—a project that highlights his rethinking of the Japanese avant-garde in its interplay with its Western counterparts and polemics of history and literature in the context of the historical development of Japanese modernity.

The second research interest concerns the 1980s Japanese culture and society focusing on how the tropes and modes of advertising, in conjunction with the cultural critic Amano Yukichi's critical analysis of advertising, intersect with those of modern Japanese poetry particularly by Tanikawa Shuntaro.

The third research interest explores what it means to be a minority in Japan, beyond its existing definition and scope. In this vein of research, I am specifically interested in how the marginal voices in society and culture reveal the neglected social problems, negotiate with the existing art forms and thereby lead Japan's cultural landscape into a new direction.

  • Japanese Literature and Film
  • Comparative Literature
  • Cultural Studies
  • Literary Theory
  • 82-474 The Evolution of Japan's Urban Culture
  • 82-372 Advanced Japanese II
  • 82-371 Advanced Japanese I
  • 82-279 Anime: Visual Interplay between Japan and the World
  • 82-278 Japanese Film and Literature: The Art of Storytelling
  • The Berkman Faculty Development Fund, Carnegie Mellon, 2021
  • The Falk Fellowship, Carnegie Mellon, 2013, 2015, 2018
  • Invited judge for the Annual Japan Documentary Film Award at University of Pittsburgh
  • Invited judge at Annual Japanese High School Speech Contest at University of Pittsburgh
  • Yasuhara, Y. (2021). “The Intersection of Advertising, Poetry and Media—Amano Yukichi’s Theorization of Japan’s 1980” Forthcoming in Publication of Association of Japanese Literary Studies (PAAJLS) Vol. 20.
  • Yasuhara, Y. (2018). “John Okada: No-No-Boy ron: Amerika shakai no shuryu to Minority no kyokai [On John Okada’s No-No Boy: The Boundary between America’s mainstream and minority].” Forthcoming in Autumn 2018 as one chapter of Yure ugogku <hoshu>: Gendai America bungaku to shakai [The Oscillating Conservatism: The Literature and Society of Modern America.] Ed. Kazuhiko Yamaguchi and Takashi Nakatani. Tokyo: Shupuusha, 2018.
  • Yasuhara, Y. (2016). Mystical Experiences as Literary Locus in Ishikawa Jun’s Fictions in the 1930s-1950s.” Proceedings of 2014 Association for Japanese Literary Studies (October 10-11 at Western Washington University) Published in 2016.
  • Yasuhara, Y.  (May 7-8, 2011). “TV Commercials as Potential Materials for Content-Based Instruction in Elementary to Advanced Japanese.” Co-authored with Mamoru Hatakeyama. Proceedings of 18th Princeton Japanese Pedagogy Forum.
  • Yasuhara, Y. (2007). “Nagisa Oshima’s Vast Historical Project and the Theme of Homoeroticism in his Taboo (Gohatto).” Literature/Film Quarterly (Vo. 35, No.1, 2007) 350-357.

Department Member Since 2010