Middlebury

 

Courses

Courses offered in the past four years.
indicates offered in the current term
indicates offered in the upcoming term[s]

JAPN 0101 - First-Year Japanese      

First-Year Japanese
This course is an introduction to the modern Japanese language aimed at acquisition of the four basic skills speaking, listening comprehension, reading, and writing. The emphasis is on thorough mastery of the basic structures of Japanese through intensive oral-aural practice and extensive use of audiovisual materials. The two kana syllabaries and kanji (characters) will be introduced toward the goals of developing reading skills and reinforcing grammar and vocabulary acquisition. 3 hrs. lect./3 hrs. drill

LNG

Fall 2010, Fall 2011, Fall 2012, Fall 2013, Fall 2014

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JAPN 0102 - First-Year Japanese      

First-Year Japanese
This course is an intensive continuation of JAPN 0101. This course is required for those students wishing to take JAPN 0103 in the Spring. (JAPN 0101)

LNG WTR

Winter 2011, Winter 2012, Winter 2013, Winter 2014

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JAPN 0103 - First-Year Japanese      

First-Year Japanese
This course is a continuation of the fall and winter terms with the introduction of more advanced grammatical structures, vocabulary, and characters. The continuing emphasis of the beginning Japanese course will be upon acquisition of well-balanced language skills based on an understanding of the actual use of the language in the Japanese sociocultural context. (JAPN 0101, JAPN 0102) 3 hrs. lect./3 hrs. drill

LNG

Spring 2011, Spring 2012, Spring 2013, Spring 2014, Spring 2015

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JAPN 0110 - Current Social Issues in Japan      

Current Social Issues in Japan (in English)
In this course we will use ethnography, fiction, and historical studies to examine some of the underlying themes of Japanese culture. Japan is a highly developed, post-industrial society renowned across the globe for economic success in the post-World War II period. What historical and social factors have shaped Japan’s contemporary culture, and how have interactions with other countries influenced Japanese society? We will study a number of different spheres of Japanese life including the family and the workplace to better understand contemporary society. We will pay special attention to Japan’s global position and its relationship to the United States. 3 hr. lect./disc.

AAL SOC

Fall 2010, Spring 2012, Fall 2013, Spring 2015

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JAPN 0198 - Japanese Poetry (in English)      

Japanese Poetry (in English)
This course examines the tradition of Japanese poetry. Beginning with the earliest recorded poems of the seventh century, we continue through to the modern period. We will examine the forms and aesthetics of poetry and its uses within fiction, diaries, and drama. All works will be read in English translation. 3 hrs. lect./disc.

AAL CW LIT

Spring 2012, Fall 2012

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JAPN 0201 - Second-Year Japanese      

Second-Year Japanese
The goals of the intermediate course are to develop the ability to understand conversational Japanese at natural speed, to express oneself accurately and smoothly in various situations, to read nontechnical materials at reasonable speed with the use of the dictionary, and to express oneself in writing with relative ease. Understanding of Japanese culture will be broadened and deepened through mastery of the course materials. (JAPN 0103 or equivalent) 3 hrs. lect./3 hrs. drill

LNG

Fall 2010, Fall 2011, Fall 2012, Fall 2013, Fall 2014

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JAPN 0202 - Second-Year Japanese      

Second-Year Japanese
This course is a continuation of JAPN 0201. (JAPN 0201 or equivalent) 3 hrs. lect./3 hrs. drill

LNG

Spring 2011, Spring 2012, Spring 2013, Spring 2014, Spring 2015

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JAPN 0210 - Intro Japanese Linguistics      

Introduction to Japanese Linguistics (in English)
This course will provide an introduction to linguistics theories as applied to the study of Japanese. Through the exploration of a language that is very different from Indo-European languages, students will gain a better understanding of how human languages work and are structured. The relationship of language to culture will be a central theme in the course. Topics covered will include key concepts in linguistics, Japanese linguistics, culture, and pedagogy. This course will be taught in English; no Japanese language or linguistics knowledge required. 3 hrs. lect./disc.

AAL

Fall 2013, Fall 2014

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JAPN 0215 - Modern Japanese Fiction      

Modern Japanese Fiction (in English)
In this course we will examine the development of Japanese literature from the Meiji restoration (1868) through WWII. During this period of rapid and often tumultuous modernization, fiction played a crucial role in the creation of the nation-state and in the formation of the individual's sense of self. We will read works by writers who participated actively in the imagination of modernity and those who resisted it, including Kunikida Doppo, Higuchi Ichiyo, Natsume Soseki, and Mori Ogai. 3 hrs. lect./disc.

AAL LIT

Fall 2014

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JAPN 0217 - Contemporary Japanese Fiction      

Contemporary Japanese Fiction: Haruki Murakami and His Generation (in English)
Contemporary Japanese literature is dominated by the work of Haruki Murakami and writers who have been influenced by him. We will examine Murakami's work in detail, including A Wild Sheep Chase, Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, and Kafka on the Shore, and then look at the relationship between Murakami and other contemporary writers (Yoko Ogawa, Ryu Murakami, Natsuo Kirino). Murakami's impact on the visual arts (Takashi Murakami and "Superflat") and the wider culture will also be examined. Students will gain a strong grounding in contemporary Japanese culture through the eyes of one of its most interesting and influential practitioners.

AAL LIT

Spring 2011, Spring 2012, Spring 2013, Spring 2014, Spring 2015

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JAPN 0228 - Japanese Religions      

Japanese Religions
We will begin our study of Japanese religions with the ancient mythology that forms the basis of Shinto (the way of the kami, or gods). We will then consider the introduction of Buddhism, Confucianism, and Daoism to Japan and examine how these traditions were accepted, absorbed, and adapted. We will also investigate Japanese reactions to Christianity in the 16th century and the appearance of "new" Japanese religions starting in the 19th century. Throughout, we will ask how and why Japanese have both adhered to tradition and been open to new religions. 3 hrs. lect./disc.

AAL PHL

Spring 2011, Fall 2012, Spring 2015

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JAPN 0230 - Rethinking the Body in Japan      

Rethinking the Body in Contemporary Japan - In English
In this course we will examine attitudes toward and tensions related to the human body in Japan. Looking at art, music, style, and social issues we will examine the symbolic as well as material concerns of bodies in contemporary Japan. Religious, historical, martial, and aesthetic understandings of bodies will be addressed. We will analyze Japan's current attitudes toward organ transplantation, treatment of the deceased, plastic surgery, surrogacy, sex change surgery and other embodied practices. Readings will include Twice Dead and Commodifying Bodies.

AAL SOC

Fall 2010, Fall 2011, Spring 2014, Spring 2015

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JAPN 0235 - History of Pre-Modern Japan      

History of Pre-Modern Japan
In this course we will explore the social, cultural, and institutional history of Japan from the eighth century up through the rise of the Tokugawa shogunate in the 17th century. The course is organized thematically to illuminate the different periods of Japanese history, including the imperial origin myth and Heian culture, the frontier and the rise of samurai government, localism and the warring states period, and finally the Tokugawa settlement and the paradoxes of centralized feudalism. Pre-1800. 3 hrs. lect/disc.

AAL HIS SOC

Fall 2011, Spring 2013, Fall 2014

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JAPN 0236 - History of Modern Japan      

The History of Modern Japan
In this course we will review the major themes and events of modern Japanese history from the Meiji Restoration (1868) to the present. Through reading a variety of primary texts, historical analyses, and literature, as well as watching films, we will explore the formation of the modern Japanese nation-state, Japan’s colonial project in East Asia, 1920s mass culture, the question of Showa fascism, and Japan’s unique postwar experience, from occupation to high-growth and the “lost decade” of the 1990s. We will pay particular attention to the relationship between changes within Japan and larger global trends. 3 hrs. lect./disc.

AAL HIS SOC

Fall 2010, Spring 2012, Fall 2012, Fall 2013

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JAPN 0237 - Japanese Film      

Japanese Film
This course traces the history of Japanese film through the cinema of Kurosawa, Mizoguchi, Ozu, Oshima and other directors. We will focus on the golden age of the 1950s, the New Wave of the sixties, and films of the 1990s and 2000s. Films include Rashomon, Seven Samurai, and Tokyo Story, as well as influential works by current directors. 3 hrs. lect./disc. and screening

AAL ART

Spring 2011

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JAPN 0245 - Women's Activism in Japan      

Josei Undo: Women’s Activism in Contemporary Japan (in English)
In this course we will critically evaluate Japanese feminism since the late nineteenth century. We will focus on the following themes within Japanese feminism, namely, the structure of work and family life, the relationship between the state, women, and the military, and the politics of reproduction and women's bodies. In addition, we will consider the role of feminism in Japanese society and the connections between global feminisms and Japanese local political struggles. This course will help students develop a deeper understanding of Japanese society and the position of women in society. It will also help students contextualize gender relations and feminist activism cross culturally. 3 hr. lect./disc.

AAL SOC

Fall 2011, Fall 2014

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JAPN 0250 - Gender In Japan      

Gender in Japan (in English)
In this course we will examine changing ideas about gender and sexuality in Japan in the 10th through 20th centuries, with special attention to the modern period. Sources will include literary texts, films, and social/historical studies. We will discuss topics, including women's writing in classical Japan; the commercialization of sexuality in the 18th century; ideas of "homosexuality" in late-medieval and modern times; and women's social roles and political struggles in the 20th century. 3 hr. lect./disc.

AAL LIT

Spring 2011, Fall 2013

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JAPN 0260 - Kurosawa      

Kurosawa (in English)
Akira Kurosawa is internationally recognized as one of the great auteurs of cinema. His visually stunning samurai films made him famous worldwide, but some of his most compelling works deal with crime and corruption in modern society. Whether set in the past or the present, each of his films tells a story about an unlikely hero who finds himself grappling with an enduring human question: What personal sacrifices must we make for the good of others? What is bravery and where does it come from? How do we achieve our own identity? Is goodness possible in an evil world? Students will explore and debate these issues as we analyze Kurosawa’s storytelling style and cinematic techniques in a dozen films spanning his fifty-year career, including Drunken Angel, Seven Samurai, Ikiru and Kagemusha. 3 hrs. lect./ 3 hrs. screen.

AAL ART

Fall 2010, Spring 2015

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JAPN 0262 - Politics of Animation      

The Politics of Animation: Documentary, Propaganda, Art
In this course we will examine films in an emerging international genre known as animated documentary. Animation plays a surprisingly influential role in nonfiction films, as in a famous segment in Michael Moore’s Bowling for Columbine. More recently, some directors have relied solely on animation to make films with claims to telling the truth. Often politically controversial and intensely personal, these works challenge traditional definitions of cinematic form. Why is animation so persuasive? To answer this question we will explore the urban origins of early cartoons, Disney’s global hegemony, Warner Brothers’ wartime propaganda, Soviet agitprop, and the diverse ideological perspectives of limited animation in Japanese anime and American television programming. With this preparation in hand, we will analyze several animated non-fictions in their cultural and political contexts, including the artworks of William Kentridge (South Africa), Barefoot Gen (Japan), Persepolis (France/Iran), and Waltz with Bashir (Israel). 3 hrs. lect./ 3hrs. screen.

ART CMP

Fall 2010

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JAPN 0290 - The Tale of Genji (in English)      

The Tale of Genji (in English)
/The Tale of Genji/ is the world’s first psychological novel. This rich narrative centers on the political intrigues and passionate love affairs of Genji, a fictional prince barred from the throne. In this course we will explore the narrative through a close reading in English translation. Students will gain knowledge of the aesthetic, religious, and social contexts of the Heian period, one of the most vibrant eras in Japanese culture. We will also trace how Genji monogatari has been interpreted over ten centuries in art, theater, films, and most recently, manga. (Formerly JAPN 0190) 3hrs. lect/disc.

AAL LIT

Spring 2012, Spring 2013, Fall 2014

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JAPN 0301 - Third-Year Japanese      

Third-Year Japanese
This advanced course aims to increase the student's proficiency in modern standard Japanese, both spoken and written. A variety of written and audiovisual materials will be used to consolidate and expand mastery of more advanced grammatical points and vocabulary. Oral presentation, discussion, and composition in Japanese are also important components of the course. (JAPN 0202 or equivalent) 3 hrs. lect./3 hrs. drill

LNG

Fall 2010, Fall 2011, Fall 2012, Fall 2013, Fall 2014

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JAPN 0302 - Third-Year Japanese      

Third-Year Japanese
This course is a continuation of JAPN 0301. (JAPN 0301 or equivalent) 3 hrs. lect./3 hrs. drill

LNG

Spring 2011, Spring 2012, Spring 2013, Spring 2014, Spring 2015

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JAPN 0312 - Tokyo Between History & Utopia      

Tokyo: Between History and Utopia
In this course we will explore the history of Tokyo—from its "prehistory" as a small castle town in the 16th century to the cosmopolitan metropolis of the 20th century—and trace how Tokyo has captured the imagination as a space of possibility, of play, and for many, of decadence. Through a range of sources, including films, novels, ethnographies, and historical essays, we will use Tokyo as a "site" (both urban and ideological) through which to explore broader questions related to capitalist modernity, the formation of the nation-state, cultural identity, gender politics, and mass-culture. 3 hrs. sem.

AAL HIS SOC

Spring 2014

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JAPN 0330 - Global Japanese Culture      

Global Japanese Culture (in English)
In this course we will examine the transformation of Japanese cultural identity (Japanese-ness) as products, ideas, and people move across the borders in and out of Japan. Social scientists have been particularly interested in the Japanizing of non-Japanese practices and products such as hip hop and hamburgers, as well as the popularity of Japanese styles and products on the global scene. We will take an anthropological approach using texts such as Millennial Monsters, Remade in Japan, and Hip Hop Japan to examine the issues of cultural hybridity, identity, and globalization.

AAL SOC

Spring 2011, Spring 2012, Spring 2014

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JAPN 0401 - Advanced Japanese      

Advanced Japanese
In this course we will read, analyze, and discuss advanced Japanese materials from a variety of modern and contemporary sources. (JAPN 0302 or equivalent) 3 hrs. lect./disc.

Fall 2010, Fall 2011, Fall 2012, Fall 2013

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JAPN 0402 - Advanced Japanese      

This course is a continuation of JAPN 0401. 3 hrs. lect./disc.

Spring 2011, Spring 2012, Spring 2013, Spring 2014

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JAPN 0406 - The Global Sixties      

The Global Sixties: Exploding Visual Cultures
In this seminar we will explore the global upheavals of 1968 through the transdisciplinary lens of visual culture. Through a focus on architecture, film, and art we will unpack the political, social, and cultural climate that helped to define1968. Signature features of this historical moment such as the anxieties of modernism, feminist, sexual, and race-based movements, and postcolonial formations will be studied in sites and aesthetic experiments around the globe. While 1968 is often seen as uniquely Western, we will explores the implications of this epochal moment as it plays out in India, Brazil, Japan, and other non-Western centers of cultural production. This course is equivalent to JAPN 0406 and GSFS 0406. 3 hrs. sem.

ART CMP

Fall 2013

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JAPN 0430 - East Asia/Japan's Long Postwar      

Readings in Modern East Asian History: Post-colonial East Asia and Japan's "Long Postwar"
With the end of the Cold War and the death of Emperor Hirohito in 1989, long simmering debates reignited over the meaning of Japan's prewar empire in East Asia, Japanese wartime atrocities, and the reconfiguration of East Asia within the Cold War. In this course, students will investigate how events from over 60 years ago have continued to reproduce national identities and geopolitical relations in postwar East Asia. Through a variety of novels, films, and historical analyses, we will investigate the limits of, and tensions between, individual experience, memory, national history, and geopolitics. 3 hrs. sem.

AAL CMP HIS

Spring 2013

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JAPN 0435 - Workshop/Literary Translation      

Workshop in Literary Translation
Literary translation is a valuable but often neglected skill for advanced language learners. In this workshop we will consider the basic theoretical arguments in translation studies influencing translation styles and then practice translation in a variety of literary genres. Sessions will include discussions of translation strategies and active peer critique of sample translations. Each student will produce a substantial translation as the semester project. Topics covered will include: text selection, translation ethics, practical methodologies, and publishing industry standards. (JAPN 0402 concurrent or prior)

AAL LIT LNG

Spring 2011, Spring 2012, Spring 2013, Fall 2013

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JAPN 0436 - Readings in Japanese History      

Readings in Japanese History: Modernism and Fascism between the World Wars
The 1920s in Japan is typically understood as a period of political and cultural experimentation, as witnessed by the rise of avant-garde cultural groups and radicalized social movements. In contrast, the 1930s is portrayed as Japan's "dark valley", in which this sense of experimentation was suppressed or co-opted by the state. In this course, we will revisit these tumultuous decades by engaging with a range of historical assessments, novels, and critical essays. We will begin by examining theories of modernism and fascism, and then explore the changing socio-cultural milieu in interwar Japan, including mass-culture, modernization, romanticism, imperialism, and utopianism. (formerly HIST 0418)

AAL HIS

Spring 2012, Fall 2013

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JAPN 0450 - Seminar in Classical Japanese      

Seminar in Classical Japanese, Heian Period
The Heian period marks the high point of literary Japanese. In this seminar students will learn to read and translate the original classical language (bungo) in canonical works of fiction, poetry, and diaries from the 9th through the 12th century. We will discuss how self-expression emerged in Japanese writing and how subjectivity developed in fiction and poetic journals. Students will gain a solid grounding in early literary history and will master the orthography, vocabulary, and basic structures of the pre-modern language. Our readings will include Taketori monogatari, Genji monogatari, Sarashina nikki, and Hyakunin isshu. (Approval only) 3 hrs. sem.

AAL LIT LNG

Fall 2011, Fall 2012, Fall 2014

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JAPN 0451 - Seminar in Classical Japanese      

Seminar in Classical Japanese, Medieval to Edo Period
Samurai ideals and Buddhist thought coalesced in Medieval texts that continue to form the core of Japanese culture. In this seminar students will learn to read and translate the original classical language (bungo) in essays, warrior tales, and travel diaries from the 13th through the 17th century. We will discuss how Buddhist philosophy and samurai principles evolved into aesthetic values for aspiring urbanites in the Edo period. Students will gain knowledge of traditional writings familiar to contemporary Japanese readers and will master the orthography, vocabulary, and basic structures of the pre-modern language. Our readings will include the Hojoki, Heike monogatari, and Bashō's Oku no hosomichi. (Approval only) 3 hrs. sem.

AAL LIT LNG

Spring 2013, Spring 2015

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JAPN 0475 - Seminar in Japanese Studies      

Advanced Reading in Japanese Studies
In this course students will read original materials in a variety of disciplines and develop skills to discuss them in Japanese on a near-native level. Advanced listening practice and literary translation will also be emphasized. Students will create an annotated research bibliography in preparation for the senior project or thesis. This course is required before taking JAPN 0700, but any student may enroll with approval of the instructor. (Approval only) 3 hrs. disc.

Fall 2010, Spring 2011, Fall 2011, Fall 2014

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JAPN 0500 - Independent Project      

Qualified students may be permitted to undertake a special project in reading and research under the direction of a member of the department. Students should seek an advisor and submit a proposal to the department well in advance of registration for the term in which the work is to be undertaken.

Fall 2010, Winter 2011, Spring 2011, Fall 2011, Winter 2012, Spring 2012, Fall 2012, Winter 2013, Spring 2013, Fall 2013, Winter 2014, Spring 2014, Fall 2014, Spring 2015

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JAPN 0700 - Honors Thesis      

Honors Thesis
Students write a thesis in English with a synopsis in Japanese on literature, film, or culture. The topic for the thesis is chosen in consultation with the instructor. (JAPN 0475)

Fall 2010, Winter 2011, Spring 2011, Fall 2011, Winter 2012, Spring 2012, Fall 2012, Winter 2013, Spring 2013, Fall 2013, Winter 2014, Spring 2014, Fall 2014, Spring 2015

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JAPN 1022 - Tokyo History & Utopia      

Tokyo: Between History and Utopia
In this course we will explore the history of Tokyo – from backwater village in the 16th century to the cosmopolitan metropolis of the 20th century – and trace how Tokyo has captured the imagination as a space of possibility, play, consumption, and, for many, decadence. Through a range of sources, including film, novels, ethnographies, and historical essays, we will use Tokyo as a lens through which to explore broader questions related to capitalist modernity, the formation of the modern nation-state, cultural identity, the politics of gender, and mass-culture.

AAL HIS WTR

Winter 2013

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