Carnegie Mellon University

Japanese Film and Literature: The Art of Storytelling

Course Number: 82-278

Fulfills The Arts Gen Ed requirement

This course explores how the art of storytelling is in tandem with the vicissitudes of the human condition as illustrated in Japans variety of fictions, non-fictions, and films in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Analyses of each storytelling not only reveal the cultural dynamics behind Japanese modernity, but also invite students to find new insights into Japanese culture and their ways of perceiving our globalized world. What kind of cultural exchanges took place between modern Japan and the West? How are Japans traditional values transformed in the face of modern technicalization and industrialization, compared to the modernization of other countries? And, in turn, what kind of impact has modern Japanese culture had on todays world? Tackling these questions among others, the course also extends to such issues as the legacy of traditional Japanese culture, the modern Emperor system, World War II experiences, emerging voices of minorities, and popular culture (e.g., anime and subculture). This course is taught in English.

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Units: 9
Prerequisite(s): None