pmjs logs for August 2000. Total number of messages for month: 12

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self-introduction (Meredith.McKinney) 

new members, web searches/home pages/profiles (Michael Watson) 

Association of Japanese Literature Conference program (Elizabeth Oyler) 

tea symposium summary (Morgan Pitelka) 

Reading materials on modern Japan: low birth rate (Vyjayanthi Ratnam, Hank Glassman, William Bodiford) 

AJLS Newsletter 12 (Eiji Sekine) 

Lightly edited (see "principles"). Editorial comments in italics.

Date: Aug 01 2000 02:50:38 EDT
From: "meredith mckinney" <>
Subject: Profile

Dear Michael,

Thanks for putting me on your mailing list. As to a profile, let me
briefly offer the following:

Lived in Kyoto for approximately 20 years, and returned to
Australia in 1998 to begin a PhD on Saigyo Monogatari at the Japan Centre
at the Australian National University (due for completion late 2001).

In 1998 my translation of Saigyo Monogatari ("The Tale of Saigyo")
came out in the Michigan Papers in Japanese Studies series (no. 25). I've
also translated and published a number of short stories and poems from the
field of modern Japanese literature (one of which, "Ravine", has won this
year's Japan-U.S. Friendship Commission Japanese Literary Translation

Once the thesis is out of the way, I'm contracting with Penguin
Classics to do a new translation of "The Pillow Book".

Meredith McKinney

Date: Aug 01 2000 02:46:49 EDT
From: "Anthony J. Bryant" <>
Subject: Profile

meredith mckinney wrote:

> Once the thesis is out of the way, I'm contracting with
> Penguin
> Classics to do a new translation of "The Pillow Book".

To quote my ex-fiancee:

Woo hoo!!!

We've needed something like this for a long time. How long do you
anticipate such a project would take? I'm curious as to how long people
generally expect to work to produce translations of such length.


Date: Aug 04 2000 10:39:18 EDT
From: Michael Watson <>
Subject: new member

While the pmjs editor was away in England, a number of new members joined.
Meredith McKinney has already introduced herself, but let me belatedly
welcome her and a graduate student in London:

Teresa Martinez Fernandez <>

My main interests are Genji Monogatari and Heian period literature in
general. At present I am writing my MA dissertation on "enclosures", textual
appearances of the fence "kaki" and its variants, as in "kaimami", in some
works of the Heian period and in Kojiki. As an element of this I am
presently looking for information about the Ise priestess and the nature of
her office in relation to the emperor.

I am now at SOAS doing an MA in East Asian Literature. Professor Gerstle
suggested I join the pmjs list as a possible source for materials useful for
my writing.

Date: Aug 04 2000 10:41:01 EDT
From: Michael Watson <>
Subject: web searches/home pages/profiles

For those of you who want a reliable and fast way to do Internet word
searches in Japanese, the long-awaited beta version of "Google" for Japanese
is now available. Google has long been my search engine of choice. Now it
works properly with East Asian languages.

For more exact searches, put two or more key words in the search box,
separated by spaces (the long, "Japanese" space works fine). Another handy
feature of Google is the "cache" option--even if a web page is temporarily
down--or removed by the owner--you can very often examine Google's cached
version of the page. Enough to make webmasters break out in a cold sweat.

To search for person connected at a known university I recommend entering:
SURNAME site:URL, e.g.
This will often locate that person's home page--or at least a mention on a
departmental page. In this case it finds respectively

I hope Morgan and Raj don't mind my using them as examples. I don't intend
to work through the whole alphabet this way, so I'd be happy to hear
off-list from any of you with web pages to publicize--and I'm happy NOT to
add links if you'd prefer it that way.

Any members wishing to update their profiles--new publications, new
affiliations--are very welcome to do so. Look up your current entry on
copy it in a mail to me <> and make any necessary

Michael Watson

Date: Aug 04 2000 13:07:35 EDT
From: David Pollack <>
Subject: web searches/home pages/profiles


Thanks for the useful information. Noticing that they left Google's "I'm
Feeling Lucky" search button in English, I wondered what a good translation
into Japanese would be: [xxx]


Date: Aug 09 2000 14:06:02 EDT
From: Elizabeth Oyler <>
Subject: Acts of Writing

Dear PMJS List Members:
I am pleased to inform you of the upcoming Association of Japanese
Literature Conference to be held at Washington University in St. Louis,
November 10-12, 2000. I am attaching the conference program. Those who
require more information are encouraged to visit our webpage:>

Or feel free to contact me or my colleagues Marvin Marcus and Elizabeth
Oyler. We are looking forward to the conference and warmly invite you to

Elizabeth Oyler

Date: Aug 17 2000 16:12:29 EDT
From: Morgan Pitelka <>
Subject: tea symposium summary

(apologies for cross-posting)

The Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Japanese Arts and Cultures
(SISJAC) and the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) sponsored a
one-day symposium on Japanese tea culture on 24 June, 2000.

Timon Screech, Senior Associate at SISJAC and Senior Lecturer in the
History of Japanese Art at SOAS, opened the symposium.

KUMAKURA Isao, Professor, National Museum of Ethnology, Osaka and Sotheby's
Senior Visiting Scholar at SISJAC, presented the first paper, titled
"Bunkashi kenkyu to shite no sadoshi" [Tea history as cultural history].
Kumakura began by breaking down the history of tea in Japan into numerous
distinct stages, ranging from the use of tea for medicinal purposes, to the
transformation of tea into a performing art (geino), to its life as an art
of play (yugei), to the domination of the iemoto system. He then reviewed
the various approaches and sources available for the study of tea culture,
including the most common, documentary resources; tangible resources such
as extant objects (denseihin), paintings, and archaeological materials; and
intangible sources, such as the forms of actually making and consuming tea
(temae and saho), and the associated cultures of tea food and sweets. In
particular, Kumakura emphasized the boundary between tea researchers and
tea practitioners, and the mutual ambivalence which has dominated relations
between these groups. He suggested that the cause of this ambivalence lies
in the simple difference in perspective: the first group contemplates the
contemporary practice of tea from the standpoint of history, and the latter
group contemplates tea history from their contemporary position as tea
practitioners. The most interesting and challenging research in tea
culture, he argued, will emerge from a synthesis of these two points of

Morgan Pitelka, Ph.D. candidate at Princeton University, gave a talk titled
"Sado ni okeru tezukuri no imi" [The meaning of the "handmade" in tea
culture]. He briefly reviewed the history of handmade utensils in Japanese
tea, beginning with the bamboo tea scoops of Takeno Joo (1502-55), followed
by the bamboo tea scoops and flower containers of Sen no Rikyu and other
tea practitioners of the late sixteenth century. He then shifted his focus
to the phenomenon of hand-made ceramics in tea, looking at documentary
evidence for their origins under Oda Uraku (1547-1621), as well as the more
famous products of Hon'ami Koetsu (1558-1637). He then reviewed hand-made
tea bowls of the seventeenth century (nearly all of which are low-fired,
lead-glazed ceramics, in the "Raku" style), including the works of Koshin
Sosa, Senso Soshitsu, Ichio Soshu, Yamada Sohen, Katagiri Sekishu,
Yabunouchi Chikushin, and their followers and descendents. He also looked
at the 18th century increase in hand-made ceramics by townspeople and
warriors, a response to the spread of the iemoto system and publications on
Raku ceramic techniques. He closed his presentation by commenting that the
frequent production of copies of famous ceramics by tea practitioners both
inside and outside of the iemoto system makes the connoisseurship of Raku
ceramics extremely difficult.

TANIMURA Reiko presented a paper titled "Chajin to shite no Ii Naosuke" [Ii
Naosuke as a tea practitioner], based on her completed Ph.D. dissertation.
She began by discussing Naosuke's life in the isolated dwelling Umoreginoya
between 1831-46, when he wrote several texts and decided to establish his
own branch of Sekishu school tea. She then explained how Naosuke's attitude
towards tea developed when he became heir to the Hikone domain in 1846,
attaching importance to procedures, becoming stricter, and incorporating
the rhetoric of religious devotions or gyo. She concluded by examining his
writings about tea during his tenure as daimyo of Hikone between 1850 and
60. She focused on his text, _Chanoyu Ichie Shu_, particularly the
well-known phrase "ichigo ichie" or "one time, one meeting." Tanimura
argued that the phrase represents the core of his philosophy of chanoyu,
and that the rest of the volume attempts to teach etiquette and manners
proper to the warrior status group. She thus situated Naosuke in the
context of the Bakumatsu reconstruction of the notion of a distinct warrior
culture and spirit by warrior leaders worried about the developing
international crisis.

Rupert Faulkner, Curator at the Victoria and Albert Museum, presented a
paper titled "Digging for food - the case of Seto and Mino ceramics,
1550-1650." He began by outlining the history of the establishment of Osaka
Castle, and recent excavations of the site. Particularly important is the
clear stratigraphy resulting from several well-documented events in the
castle's history. These include the destruction of the Ishiyama Honganji in
1580, the commencement of work on Hideyoshi's Osaka Castle in 1583, the
devastation of Osaka by earthquake in 1596, the battles of Osaka Castle of
1614-1615 and the reconstruction of Osaka Castle from 1620 to 1629.
Faulkner discussed the overall trends in ceramics seen from excavations of
Osaka Castle, such as a decrease in earthenware, Seto/Mino ceramics and
Chinese ceramics, and an increase in Bizen and Karatsu wares. He then
discussed the various documentary resources available for the study of food
from the period, including tea diaries and culinary texts such as the Ryori
monogatari. He concluded by saying that differences in the level of
analysis of kiln site and consumer site archaeology on the one hand, and
the difficulty of connecting material and documentary evidence on the
other, make it difficult to posit more than generalized links between the
development of ceramics and food culture during this important transitional

John Carpenter, Sainsbury Lecturer in the History of Japanese Art at SOAS,
presented a paper titled "Chagake to shite no utagire" [Poem fragments as
tea hangings]. His presentation focused on the cultural implications of
displaying examples of Heian and early medieval waka scrolls (instead of
bokuseki or paintings) during tea gatherings of the mid-sixteenth through
early seventeenth centuries. He cited records of a tea gathering hosted by
Takeno Joo in 1555, at which a shikishi with a poem by early Kamakura poet
and critic Fujiwara no Teika was displayed. The use of poems with
associations to poets and calligraphers of the age of the Shinkokinshu (ca.
1205) established the foundation of a later trend, beginning in the early
17th century, towards using works associated with the age of the Kokinshu
(ca. 915) and, more significantly, with calligraphers of the middle-Heian
period. Many works used for display at tea gatherings were in the form of
utagire, (poem fragments) cut from longer handscrolls or albums,
which were
remounted in calligraphy albums (tekagami) or as hanging scrolls. Although
almost without exception unsigned, the fragments were given unsubstantiated
attributions to renowned calligraphers of the early and mid-Heian period.
The process was later expanded by generations of connoisseurs of the
Kohitsu ("Old Brush") Family, who would create an extremely
subjective but
influential system of attribution, naming works, and commercial evaluation.
Carpenter suggested that one impetus to this practice of speculative
attribution grew out of a preference of tea aficionados to display tea
hangings that could be linked with recognizable personalities of an
idealized courtly past$B%`(Bexhibiting an idolatrizing process parallel to
at work in the practice of displaying bokuseki by celebrated Zen masters.

Date: Aug 22 2000 07:45:43 EDT
From: Vyjayanthi Ratnam <>
Subject: Reading materials on modern Japan

I am trying to look for some materials to assign as readings to students I
am teaching this semester. Can anyone suggest some English language
scholarship on (1) the low reproductive birth rate/nuclear families in
Japan, and (2) how history is being taught in schools these days in Japan?

I would really appreciate some suggestions.

Vyjayanthi Ratnam

Date: Aug 23 2000 08:56:33 EDT
From: Hank Glassman <>
Subject: Reading materials on modern Japan

Vyjayanthi Ratnam asks about English laguage readings on low birth rate in
modern Japan.

You could try:

Samuel Coleman, _Family Planning in Japanese Society : traditional birth
control in
a modern urban culture_ (Princeton University Press,1983)

But also (on religious responses to abortion and the ideology of fecundiy
in [mostly] 19th/20th C Japan):

William LaFleur,_ Liquid Life_ (Princeton University Press, 1992)


Helen Hardacre,_Marketing the Menacing Fetus in Japan_ (Univeristy of
California Press, 1997)


Hank Glassman

Date: Aug 24 2000 05:14:49 EDT
From: William Bodiford <>
Subject: Reading materials on modern Japan

You might consider the following:

Jolivet, Muriel. _Japan: The Childless Society?_ (Routledge 1997)

Buckley, Sandra. 1988. "Body politics: abortion law reform." In _The
Japanese trajectory: modernization and beyond_, edited by Gavan McCormack &
Sugimoto Yoshio (Cambridge)

Coleman, Samuel. _Family Planning in Japanese Society: Traditional Birth
Control in a Modern Urban Culture_ (Princeton, 1983)

Date: Aug 27 2000 00:36:19 EDT
From: eiji sekine <>
Subject: AJLS Newsletter 12

Dear Netters,

Here is a text format copy of the AJLS Newsletter, No. 12, which
features the AJLS 9th annual meeting program. For a formatted electronic
copy of the newsletter (as well as its back issues), please check our
webpage: For more thorough
information on the conference, please visit the Washington University
webpage: Please plan to attend our
meeting in November.

eiji sekine

AJLS Newsletter
Association for Japanese Literary Studies

No. 12 (Fall, 2000) Edited by Eiji Sekine

AJLS o Purdue University o1359 Stanley Coulter Hall oW. Lafayette, IN
47907, USA
765.496.2258 (tel) o 765.496.1700 (fax) o (e-mail) (web-site)

AJLS Newsletter Sponsor: FLL, Purdue University

Ninth Annual Meeting Program

Acts of Writing: Language and Identities in Japanese Literature

Washington University, St. Louis
November 10-12

The conference this year is organized around topics of "literariness,"
national / gendered identities, and language and will feature
twenty-four paper presentations along with two keynote speakers, Dr.
Zdenka Svarcova of Charles University, Czech Republic and Yoshihiro
Ohsawa, Professor of English and Comparative Literature, Tokyo

For more information on registration, lodg-ings, and transportation, see
the conference webpage:

[remainder omitted]

Date: Aug 30 2000 22:41:39 EDT
From: Michael Watson <>
Subject: new profiles

The very first member to subscribe when this list was set up in September
1999 has kindly sent in his profile. I hope Joshua's sterling example will
encourage others who have somehow omitted to sent the editor their profiles.

Joshua S. Mostow <>
I work in the areas of premodern Japanese literature and
art. Particular interests include: inter-art relations (between poetry and
painting); Heian nikki; issues of gender and sexuality in Heian and Edo
periods; reception history and cultural nationalism. My current project is
a reception history of the Ise monogatari, with particular attention to the
illustrative tradition--from the Heian period up to manga.

For list of publications, etc., please see

Meanwhile with the new academic year starting in many countries, inquiries
and sign-up requests have started to come in. Welcome to three new members:

Chieko Nakano <chie...@...rizona.EDU>
Ph.D. student , East Asian Studies, The University of Arizona,
area of interest: art, religion, and popular culture in medieval Japan

Hans Bjarne Thomsen <>
I am a Ph.D. student in Japanese Art and Archaeology department at
Princeton, and my dissertation will focus on Ito Jakuchu and the eighteenth
century Kyoto art world. Other interests include early modern religious art
and woodblock prints.

Wiebke Denecke <>
PhD candidate at Harvard University
interests: Chinese cultural history, literature, and literary thought up
until the Song dynasty; kambun literature; processes of transculturation
between China and Nara/Heian Japan; theories of transculturation, hybrid
cultures, multilinguality

Phillip Harries (Oxford) and Alexander Philippov (St-Petersburg) are among
other recent subscribers. Profiles welcome from them--and any of you who
want to submit one, or revise the profile already online at:

Finally, if the editor can be allowed a personal note, let me assure those
of you who know where I spend my summers that Mount Bandai in Fukushima
Prefecture has NOT erupted despite rumours to the contrary (that was the
volcano on Miyakejima). A series of "kazan-sei jishin" (volcanic tremors)
and reports of an impending eruption sent the tourists scattering, but we
have not abandoned our little retreat in the woods, just 5 km from the
summit of the live volcano. The last major eruptions were in 1888 and, to
end on a premodern note, in the year 806.

Best wishes to all,

Michael Watson

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