Annual Bibliography of Anime and Manga Studies – 2006 Ed.: Part 2

JapanamericaIn terms of books on anime/manga, whether written by single authors, or collecting essays by several, 2006 was simply like no year that came before. In fact, I would be comfortable saying that it marked the point when the academic study of Japanese animation and Japanese comics could really be thought of as a discreet academic field or area. Of course, academic authors had been writing books, chapters, and articles on anime/manga for years already, but, by 2006, it was clear that there was now enough interest in these topics to support a book from a major publisher claiming right in its title that “Japanese pop culture has invaded the U.S.“, dedicated essay collections such as Cinema Anime and Reading Manga, as well as, for the first time, an ongoing series of volumes that would explore a new general theme every year – Mechademia: An Annual Forum for Anime, Manga, and the Fan Arts. And it’s also worth noting that both the essay collections and the first Mechademia volume drew contributions from authors, such as Susan Napier, Anne Allison, Jaqueline Berndt, Antonia Levi, Thomas Lamarre, Sharalyn Orbaugh, and Brian Ruh, who were already at the forefront of writing about anime and manga – and who have continued playing major roles in how the field has developed since. In addition, the 2006 list of new academic publications on anime/manga includes 14 individual chapters in other general essay collections, as well as a pair of entries (“manga” and “yaoi”) in the scholarly Encyclopedia of erotic literature.

As always, the full list of books, book chapters, and academic journal articles on anime/manga that appeared in 2006 is permanently archived as a separate page. Any new addition will be reflected on that page only. And, also as always, if you have any additions to this list, please do not hesitate to let me know!

English-language books and book chapters on anime (Japanese animation) and manga (Japanese comics): 2006

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Annual Bibliography of Anime and Manga Studies – 2006 Ed.: Part 1

Introduction

Animation 1-1Once again, for the next annual list of academic publications on anime/manga, covering 2006, I am breaking it down into two sections. This first one covers articles published in academic/scholarly journals, as well as “journals of opinion”, commentary magazines, and publications sponsored by Japanese government agencies and non-profit organizations. The second will include books and essay collections.

Particularly notable journal articles on anime/manga published in 2006 included Susan Napier’s Matter out of place: Carnival, containment and cultural recovery in Miyazaki’s Spirited Away, in the Journal of Japanese Studies, one of the leading English-language journals in this area, two papers in the Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy – one introducing manga to teachers and the other, arguing that anime can have a distinct benefit for students of Japanese as a foreign language, in-depth studies of Full Metal Alchemist, Haibane Renmei, Memories, Perfect Blue, and Hayao Miyazaki’s Oscar-winning Spirited Away, and several essays, in different publications, on the appeal of “boys’ love” manga and anime to audiences both in Japan and in other countries.

Structurally, 2006 also saw the launch of both Animation: An Interdisciplinary Journal, the first peer-reviewed journal on animation published by a major for-profit publisher (with Platonic sex: Perversion and shojo anime (Part one), by McGill University’s Thomas Lamarre, in the inaugural issue), and the online-only, open access Animation Studies. In the years since, both of these journals have actively welcomed academic articles on Japanese animation, with almost 30 such articles between the two of them.

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Who are the anime/manga scholars?

One way to characterize any academic field is by looking at the authors who publish in it. What countries are they based in? What colleges/universities? And, more specifically, what are their academic affiliations? Scholars often ask these questions – as, for example, in Who publishes in comparative politics: Studying the world from the United States and Author characteristics for major accounting journals: Differences among similarities 1989-2009. But, at least so far, I don’t think anyone has tried to ask the question of just who are the people who produce English-language academic writing on Japanese animation and Japanese comics.

Most studies of this type that I have seen look at a single journal that is considered to be particularly representative of a field, or at a small group of journals. As I have argued (and worked to demonstrate), academic writing on anime and manga is spread out across a wide range of journals that are quite different from one another. So, limiting a study of the characteristics of anime/manga scholars only to a particular type of journal, whether one focused on animation, on comics, or on Asian/East Asian/Japanese studies, would likely produce a decidedly incomplete picture. But, publications in anime/manga studies are not limited to journal articles.

In particular, at least four major general edited collections of essays on Japanese animation and Japanese comics have been published in the last ten years – and several more with specific themes narrower than anime/manga in general. Two of them focus on anime and manga both, and one each on anime or manga. So, precisely because I think these books do represent the variety of possible academic approaches to anime and manga, they can serve as excellent sources for a study that would answer this question.

In addition, an edited essay collection will usually include short biographical profiles for each of its contributors. This makes locating and recording this kind of information very easy. So, my methodology for this study is straight-forward – I reviewed the tables of contents and the “notes on contributors” sections of each of the four collections, and noted the relevant details about the authors: their general status as faculty, other “non-teaching” academic employees (administrators, visiting fellows, researchers, etc.), independent scholars/professionals (such as librarians), or graduate students, for faculty, the departments or programs they were affiliated with, the countries where they work and/or live, if provided, and their gender. This returned a list of 59 authors. A few published essays in more than one volume – these were counted each time. Two had two contributions to the same volume (as sole author, and with co-authors) – in these two cases, I only recorded the first one. I specifically did not include any authors whose contributions were limited to forewords/introductions/conclusions.

Who are the anime/manga scholars: Author characteristics in four essay collections

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Annual Bibliography of Anime and Manga Studies – 2008 Ed.: Part 1

So far, my workflow for building a freely accessible (and more importantly, close to comprehensive) directory of published English-language academic writing on Japanese animation and Japanese comics has consisted of compiling and posting annual lists of such publications – like the ones that are now available in the Bibliographies section. Needless to say, preparing a list that frequently contains more than 150 individual publications – verifying the titles and the names of the authors, confirming that the books are still in print and that individual articles are still available online, whether in open access or at least through a publisher’s website, correcting any spelling or punctuation errors in my original notes – takes a lot of time. So, In the interests of speeding up this process, I will try a new approach – of spreading these lists over several posts. Of course, once each annual list is complete, it will be added to the Bibliographies section for permanent archiving as well.

English-language academic publications on anime and manga: 2008, Part 1 – Journal articles Continue reading

Creator Bibliography – Osamu Tezuka (Part 1: 2010 – present)

It is always hard to come up with adequate words for the role that Osamu Tezuka played in the development of Japanese comics and Japanese animation. The epithets are plenty – “one of the most respected cultural figures of 20th century Japan”, “godfather” of anime/manga, “God of manga”, even “God of comics” – and there is a reason for them.

But, at the same time, when considering Tezuka, it is also crucially important to avoid exaggeration and hyperbole, to evaluate the man and his work critically, to consider it in a proper context. Yes, Tezuka largely defined “manga” and “anime” as we know them, and his influence on anime and manga is felt to the present day. But, for example, no, Osamu Tezuka did not “invent” Japanese comics or Japanese animation. How “manga” and “anime” would have developed without him and what form Japanese comics and Japanese animation would have taken in his absence is a valid question, but there is no reason to assume that these forms of popular visual culture would not have existed at all without Osamu Tezuka.

Regardless, t is also no surprise that Tezuka – the artist, the writer, the creator – has been the subject of significant scholarly attention. For example, he is one of only four anime/manga creators who are the subject of a full-length English-language study of their work – the others being Hayao Miyazaki, Mamoru Oshii, and Satoshi Kon. Continue reading

Highlighting New Journals – East Asian Journal of Popular Culture

East Asian Journal of Popular CultureAs I have noted just recently, anime/manga studies as an academic area does not yet have a defined group of “core” journals that are considered to be the area’s most important or most authoritative. Nonetheless, it’s possible to identify journals that, at least subjectively, can be considered “important” to anime/manga studies. In fact, in Journals in the core collection: Definition, identification, and applications, The Serials Librarian, 51(3-4), 51-73, Thomas Nisonger specifically mentions “subjective judgment” as one of the possible approaches to determining core journals for a discipline – certainly not the only one, and with plenty of shortcomings – but also, with definite benefits and definite applications. And, just as I work to compile a general bibliography of academic publications on anime/manga, I have also put together a list of “anime/manga studies journals” – academic periodicals that have been particularly open to publishing academic articles on anime/manga, or that, by their very nature and their specific subject focus, welcome these kinds of articles.

Some of the journals on this list are well-known and long-established, with archives going back decades – The Journal of Japanese Studies, The Journal of Popular Culture, Science Fiction Studies. Others, such as the Journal of Fandom Studies, the Journal of Japanese & Korean Cinema, and Studies in Comics have only been published for a few years. Some of them are open access – that is, can be read at no charge, while others are available only to subscribers or via a database. And, just as with the main bibliography, I am always looking for items to add to this list. So, it’s always really interesting to come across a new journal that should clearly be included – such as the new East Asian Journal of Popular Culture, the inaugural April 2015 issue of which has now been published. Continue reading

Annual Bibliography of Anime and Manga Studies – 2015 Ed.

Over the more than 10 years now that I have been tracking the development of anime/manga studies as an academic area in general, and new academic publications on anime/manga more specifically, I have presented my work in several different formats. A single fixed list or table was adequate when there were only a few dozen books, book chapters, and journal articles to highlight. But it would not be able an adequate way to present several hundred records. For a while, I was able to add new items to a database presented online using the DabbleDB platform. Since it was discontinued four years ago, I have compiled annual lists of new publications on anime/manga, and announced them at the end of each year. These lists for the years from 2010 to 2014 are now archived in the Bibliographies section of this site, and I plan to continue this work and present similar lists for the years prior to 2010 as well – in fact, the one for 2009 will be up in the next few days. At the same time, this blog now also makes it possible for me to maintain a running list of new publications on anime/manga – so, rather than assembling the list continuously but only releasing it in December or even next year, I can instead make the list of academic publications on anime/manga published this year available to the public right now, and update it continuously as new materials are published.

Annual Bibliography of Anime/Manga Studies, 2015 Ed.

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‘Manga at a Crossroads’ Symposium

On March 6 and April 4, The Ohio State University’s East Asian Studies Center will present Manga at a Crossroads, a two-day symposium on manga as a major form of Japanese popular culture, with influence and impact world-wide. The symposium’s first session will focus on the origins, history and development of manga; the second will examine its global reach. Both sessions will feature talks by leading scholars of Japanese popular culture from around the U.S., Canada, and Great Britain, and are designed to run in connection with the exhibit World of Shojo Manga!: Mirrors of Girls’ Desires, which will be hosted by OSU’s Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum from March 28 to July 15. Continue reading

Researching the Business of Anime – Resources and Thoughts

In the opening chapter of The Anime Machine: A Media Theory of Animation, Thomas Lamarre identifies what he calls “the book report or film review model” of writing on Japanese animation – “a summary of the major narrative in conjunction with a consideration of major themes”. He does not dismiss this approach, and acknowledges it as “frequently insightful”, but argues that it is only one of several possible or potential approaches that anime scholars can take. However, as he points out, far too much of the scholarly writing on Japanese animation that is published in English falls under this model. Anime scholars select particular themes, and highlight how these themes are expressed in particular anime, or working in reverse, scholars pick a particular anime work and examine the themes and images that it contains. Or they look at how audiences interact with anime – as consumers, but primarily, as fans. Less frequently, authors describe the particular technical characteristics of a director’s work. Continue reading