Cinema and Anime in Japan, Asian 2261

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Cinema and Anime in Japan, Asian 2261 (3 credits)

Fall, 2010, Lectures, M, W, 11:15 to 12:05, Baker 335

Discussions, F, Dis 201, 11:15-12:05 in Rockefeller 132, Dis 203, 12:20-1:10 Baker 135
Film Screenings: Kurosawa Centennial at Cornell Cinema, otherwise Mondays at 7:30 in 132 Rockefeller. Students interested in following the entire centennial screening series may take a 1-point course with Professor de Bary. Purchase of Cornell Cinema passes is recommended.

Course Blackboard site: Please see the Blackboard site for Asian2261-deBary-Fall2010 for most readings assigned in the course. Students should enroll themselves on the site, using the password “straydog.”

Instructor, Brett de Bary, 376 Rockefeller

Office Hours: Wednesdays, 1:30 to 2:30 and by appointment

Teaching Assistant, Mina Ahn
Section One: Cinema

Thinking About Text and Context in Postwar Japan
Week of 8/25

W, 8/25 Introductory Lecture

Screening: Kurosawa Centennial, STRAY DOG (Norainu, Kurosawa Akira, 1949), 122 mins. WSH, 7pm (also 8/31 at 7pm)
Readings: from Dower, Embracing Defeat: Japan in the Wake of World War II by John Dower (Norton, 1999), pp. 33-120.

Isolde Standish, “The Question of War Culpability and the Tôhô Studio Strikes” and “The Post-Defeat Decade” in “Cinema and Humanism,” from A New History of Japanese Cinema (Continuum, 2005), pp. 174-190.

F 8/ 27 Discussion of Stray Dog.
Week of 8/30

M 8/30 Kurosawa: Framing and Filming Late ‘40’s Japan

Screening, Kurosawa Centennial, DRUNKEN ANGEL (Yoidore Tenshi, Kurosawa, 1948), 98 mins. WSH, 7pm (also 8/31 at 9:30pm)
Readings: “Viewing Kurosawa,” pp. 4-31, and Chapter Three, “Will Power Can Cure All Human Ills,” pp. 67-99, which take up Stray Dog and Drunken Angel, from The Warrior’s Camera: The Cinema of Akira Kurosawa by Stephen Prince (Princeton University Press, 1991).
W 9/1 Concepts of Film Form

Readings: “The Significance of Film Form,” Chapter Two from Film Art: An Introduction by David Bordwell and Kristin Thompson (McGraw Hill, 1993), pp. 41-63,

F 9/ 3 Discussion of DRUNKEN ANGEL
Week of 9/6 “Rashômon” (1950) as Pivotal Site in Japanese Film History


Screenings: Kurosawa Centennial, RASHÔMON (Kurosawa, 1951), 87 minutes, WSH Monday, 9/6 at 7pm or Tuesday, 9/7 at 9:15pm
W 9/ 8 RASHÔMON and Film Narrative as a Formal System

Readings: James Goodwin, “Modernist Narrative and Intertexuality,” in Akira Kurosawa and Intertextual Cinema ( Johns Hopkins, 1994), pp 113-161.

Bordwell and Thompson, “Narrative as a Formal System,” Chapter Three from Film Art, pp 64-101.
Recommended: Parker Tyler, “Rashômon as Modern Art,” pp. 195-208, and Donald Richie, “Kurosawa and Rashômon,” in Rashômon: A Film by Akira Kurosawa (Grove Press, 1969), pp. 222-240.

D. Martinez, “Rashômon and the Problem of Subjectivity,” in Remaking Kurosawa: Translations and Permutations in Global Cinema (Palgrave, 2009), p. 30-31.

F 9/ 10

Discussion of Rashômon.

**First Written Assignment Due** Segmentation of “Rashômon” (S/U Grade)
Week of 9/13

M 9/13 The A-Bomb, Ethics, and Science in Japanese Postwar Film

Screening: Gojira (Honda Ishirô, 1954), 108 mins. Assigned Classroom, 7:30pm
Reading: Mark Anderson, “Mobilizing Gojira: Mourning Modernity as Monstrosity,” from In Godzilla’s Footsteps: Japanese Pop Culture Icons on the Global Stage ed, Tsutsui and Ito (Palgrave, 2006), pp. 21-40.

Yomota Inuhiko, “The Menace from the South Seas: Honda Ishirô’s Godzilla (1954) from Japanese Cinema: Texts and Contexts, ed. Philips and Stringer, ( Routledge, 2007), pp. 103-109.

W 9/15 Godzilla, in Japanese and U.S. versions
F, 9/ 17 Teaching Sessions on Cinematography and Editing

Reading: “The Shot: Cinematographic Properties,” pp. 163-231, and Chapter Seven, “What Editing Is,” especially the section on “Continuity Editing,” pp. 261-270, Film Art

Week of 9/20

M 9/ 20 Kurosawa and the Meanings of Postwar Humanism

Screening: Kurosawa Centennial, TO LIVE (Ikiru, Kurosawa, 1952), 143 mins, WSH, 7pm, also 9/21, 9:15
Reading: W 9/22 Complications of Cinematography, Editing, and Theme in Ikiru

Prince, “Will Power Can Cure All Human Ills,” analysis of Ikiru, pp. 99-114.


Yoshimoto Mitsuhiro, “Ikiru: Point of View and Subjectivity,” in Yoshimoto, Kurosawa (Duke UP, 2000), pp. 195-204.

F 9/ 24 Discussion of Ikiru.
Monday 9/27. First 3-page paper due. Compare treatments of cinematography and theme in Ikiru by Prince and Yoshimoto.
Week of 9/27 Mizoguchi Kenji
M 9/27 Theater, Melodrama, and Monumental Style in Mizoguchi

Screening: STORY OF THE LAST CHRYSANTHEMUM (Zangiku monogatari, Mizoguchi Kenji, 1939), 142 mins. 132 Rock.

Reading, Sato Tadao, “An Original Spirit” (pp. 1-14) and “”Three Traditional Art Films (Geidaimono)” (pp. 77-85) in Mizoguchi and the Art of Japanese Cinema by Tadao Sato (Berg, 2009).

Darrell Davis, “Story of the Last Chrysanthemum (1939): A Riptide of Reaction” from Picturing Japaneseness: Monumental Style, National Identity, Japanese Film (Columbia UP, 1996), pp. 107-129.

W 9/29 Noel Burch, Mizoguchi, and the “Difference” of Japanese Cinema

Reading: Noel Burch, Sections on Zangiku monogatari in “Mizoguchi Kenji,” in To the Distant Observer: Form and Meaning in the Japanese Cinema (UC Berkeley, 1976), pp. 217-247.

F 10/1 Discussion of Story of the Last Chrysanthemum
Week of 10/4
M 10/4 Gender Relations in Mizoguchi

Screening: SISTERS OF THE GION (Gion no shimai, 1936) in 132 Rock.

Reading: Kirihara, Donald, “Sisters of the Gion,” in Patterns of Time: Mizoguchi and the 1930’s (Wisconsin UP, 1992), pp116-134.

Recommended: Burch, section on Gion no shimai in “Mizoguchi Kenji” chapter.

W 10/6 Gender and Geopolitics in Mizoguchi

Cazdyn, Eric, “Mizoguchi and Colonialism,” in The Flash of Capital: Film and Geopolitics in Japan (Duke UP, 2002), pp. 215-222.

F 10/8 Discussion of Sisters of the Gion
Week of 10/11 Ozu Yasujiro (1903-1963)
Mon, Oct 11 Fall Break, No Class
W 10/13 Dekigokoro: Ozu’s Editing Strategies

In-class Screening: A PASSING FANCY (Dekigokoro, Ozu Yasujro, 1932)

Reading: David Bordwell, “Structures, Strictures, and Stratagems,” Ozu and the Poetics of Cinema (Princeton UP, 1987), pp. 51-73.

F 10/15 Discussion of Dekigokoro.

Bring your shot-by-shot analyses of the first 10 minutes of the film, available on Youtube:
SECTION TWO: Postwar Mass Culture, Film, Anime
Week of 10/18
M 10/18 Americanization, Youth Culture, Military Bases

Screening: PIGS AND BATTLESHIPS (Buta to gunkan, Imamura Shohei, 1962), 108 mins.

Audie Bock, “Shohei Imamura,” in Japanese Film Directors (Kodansha International, 1978), pp. 285-309.

Kojima Nobuo, “American School,” from Contemporary Japanese Literature (Knopf, 1977).

Marilyn Ivy, “Formations of Mass Culture,” in Postwar Japan As History edited by Andrew Gordon (UC Press, 1993), pp. 239-259.
Recommended: Enloe, Cynthia, “Base Women,” in Bananas, Beaches, and Bases (UC Berkeley Press, 1990). Available through Electronic Access:
W 10/20 Meet in Olin Library for library session on research tools.
Fri, Oct 22 Discussion of Pigs and Battleships.
Week of 10/25
M, 10/ 25 Assessing Japan’s New Wave: Nagisa Oshima

No screening this week.

Reading: David Desser, “Introduction,” and “Night and Fog in Japan” from Eros plus Massacre (Indiana UP, 1988), pp. 1-39.

M, 10/ 27 The Anpo Struggle and the New Wave
M, 10/29 Oshima Clips and Discussion

****Friday, October 29, Second Paper Due. Write an essay on Last Chrysanthemum, Sisters of the Gion, Dekigokoro, or Pigs and Battleships. You may draw on any of our readings. 3 pages.*****

Week 11/1
M, 11/1 New Japanese Film of the 1990’s

Screening: THE RING (Ringu, Nakata Hideo, 1998),

Reading: Brenda Jordan, “Yûrei: Tales of Female Ghosts,” in Japanese Ghosts and Demons, edited by Stephen Addiss (George Braziller and Museum of Art, University of Kansas, 1985), pp. 25-33.

Fernando Gutierrez, “Emakimono Depicting the Pains of the Damned,” Monumenta Nipponic, Vol. 22, no. ¾ (1967), 2278-289. Available through J-Stor.

W, 11/ 3 Class Discussion of The Ring.
F, 11/6 Research Presentations start.
Week 11/08
M, 11/ 8 From “Cinematism” to “Animetism”

Screening: CASTLE IN THE SKY (Tenkû no shiro Rapyuta, Miyazaki Hayao, 1984), 124 minutes.

Reading: Thomas Lamarre, “The Multiplanar Image,” from The Anime Machine: A Media Theory of Animation (Minnesota UP, 2009), pp. 55-86.
W, 11/10 Miyazaki and the Aesthetics/Ethics of Limited Animation
F, 11/ 12 Research Presentations.
Week of 11/15
M, 11/15 Kon Satoshi: Analyzing the Gaze

Screening: PERFECT BLUE ( Kon Satoshi, 1997)

Reading: Susan Napier, “Excuse Me, Who Are You?”: Performance, the Gaze, and the Female in the Works of Kon Satoshi” in Cinema Anime edited by Steven Brown (Palgrave, 2006).
W, 11/ 17 Discussion of Perfect Blue.
F, 11/19 Research Presentations.

Week of 11/22
M, 11/ 22 Revisiting Evangelion

Screening: NEON GENESIS EVANGELION (Shinseiki Evangelion, Anno Hideaki, 1995-1996).

Reading: Mariana Ortega, “My Father, He Killed Me: My Mother, She Ate Me: Self, Desire, Engendering, and the Mother in Neon Genesis Evangelion” in, Lunning, ed., Networks of Desire (Mechademia 2, Minnesota UP, 2007.)
W, 11/24 Class Discussion of Evangelion.
F, 11/ 26 NO CLASS, Thanksgiving
Week of 11/29

No Screening this week.

M, 11/29 Research Presentations.
W, 12/1 Research Presentations.
Final Papers Due in Professor de Bary’s mailbox, 350 Rockefeller Hall, by 4pm, December 7. Absolutely no extensions granted. The final paper should be a 10-page research paper on a topic related to post-1980 films or anime we have not seen in class, and should be accompanied by a bibliography of at least books are articles of relevance to your theme (not all need to be directly referenced in your paper). Each student will present a paper proposal to the class for comments and feedback.
Course Requirements:

1. Attend all class meetings. (Attendance will be taken.)

2. Screenings and readings must be completed by assigned discussion dates.

3. All written work must be submitted on time.

Reading Material: All course reading material is posted on Blackboard.

It is highly recommended that you purchase a used copy of Film Art, by David Bordwell and Kristin Thompson in the 4th edition (1993) Bordwell and Thompson McGraw Hill

(ISBN-10: 007112943X; ISBN-13: 978-0071129435) for reference during the first month of the course. One copy of the book will be placed on Uris Reserve.

Course Assessment:

Participation in discussion sections (includes S/U exercises): 15%.

First 3 page paper: 15%

Second 3page paper: 15%

Oral research presentation: 15%

Final 10-page paper: 40%

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