Japanese animation and new media

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Fall 2010; MW 4:05-5:25; Strathcona Anatomy & Dentistry M-1

INSTRUCTOR: Thomas LAMARRE (3434 McT 401): T 13:30-15:30, or appointment

TA: Heather MILLS: office hours, TBA

OBJECTIVES: This course centers on the use of animation techniques and their relation to attitudes toward technology in Japanese animation. The course will track three lineages within Japanese animation at the level of animation techniques, and will explore the implications of these three ways of making animation: (1) technological minimization, centring on Studio Ghibli and Miyazaki Hayao; (2) technological optimization and ballistic vision, centring on Gainax Studios and Anno Hideaki; and (3) gender and technology, focusing on the figure of the ‘woman who is not one’ as well as anime adaptation from manga.
METHODOLOGY: The course will alternate between film screenings and discussion. Instruction will consist largely of lectures, which are intended to explicate and supplement the readings in relation to the films. Students are expected to read the materials before class, because the lectures will directly address those readings. The readings and lectures will establish the basis for the three essays. Attendance at lectures and screenings is mandatory.
READINGS: The book The Anime Machine is available at Paragraphe Bookstore, and the reader with supplementary readings is at Copie 2000.
EVALUATION: There will be three papers, the first worth 30%, and the other two worth 35% each. The papers are to be five pages in length, that is, NO MORE THAN 1,500 WORDS. The first essay will deal with animation techniques and technological minimization, the second with animation techniques and technological optimization, and the third with gender and technology. Details will be given in class. Prior to the due date for the paper, Heather Mills (TA) will offer consultation sessions, date and location TBA.
COMMUNICATIONS POLICY: I will use my website for posting any materials distributed in class, such as the syllabus or handouts, as well as summaries of lectures with images and film clips. The TA, graders, and I will not be holding discussions on WebCT but prefer to encourage questions and comments in class. We’ll try to answer email promptly but don’t expect immediate responses. Obviously it won’t work to send a last-minute email requesting late submission of papers. As a general policy, to assure quality of communication, we would like you to speak with us in person during our office hours, rather than flooding us with email.
NOTE: (1) McGill University values academic integrity. Therefore all students must understand the meaning and consequences of cheating, plagiarism and other academic offences under the Code of Student Conduct and Disciplinary Procedures (see www.mcgill.ca/integrity for more information). (2) In accord with McGill University’s Charter of Students’ Rights, students in this course have the right to submit in English or in French any written work that is to be graded. (3) In the event of extraordinary circumstances beyond the University’s control, the content and/or evaluation scheme in this course is subject to change.



Sept 1 Introduction
Sept 6 Labour Day
Sept 8 —The Anime Machine, Introduction (pp. xiii-xxxvii)

— Jean Baudry, “Ideological Effects of the Basic Cinematographic Apparatus.” In Film Theory and Criticism, 6th ed., ed. Leo Braudy and Marshall Cohen, 355–65.

—Noel Carrol, “The Specificity Thesis.” In Film Theory and Criticism, 6th ed., ed. Leo Braudy and Marshall Cohen, 332–38.

Sept 13 —The Anime Machine Chapters 1-3 (pp. 3-44)

—Martin Jay, “Scopic Regimes of Modernity.” In Vision and Visuality, ed. Hal Foster (Seattle: Bay Press, 1988), 3-23.

NOTE: This class only will be held in Leacock Building 219.

Sept 15 Animation: Miyazaki Hayao, Tenkû no shiro Rapyuta (1986)
Sept 20 —The Anime Machine Chapters 4-5 (pp. 45-64)

—Hubert Dreyfus, “Heidegger on Gaining a Free Relation to Technology,” in Readings in the Philosophy of Technology, ed. David M. Kaplan (Oxford: Rowman & Littlefield, 2004), 53–62.

Sept 22 Documentaries: Studio Ghibli, Ôtsuka Yasuo no ugokasu yorokobi (2004) & Yves Montmayer, Ghibli et le mystère Miyazaki (2005)
Sept 27 —The Anime Machine Chapters 6-7 (pp. 65-76)

—Miyazaki Hayao, “Thoughts on Japanese Animation” and “On Animation and Cartoon Movies,” in Starting Point 1979-1996 (VIZ Media, 2009), 70-85, 123-128.

Sept 29 Animation: Miyazaki Hayao, Mononoke-hime (1997)
Oct 4 —The Anime Machine Chapter 8 (pp. 77-100)


Oct 6 —The Anime Machine Chapter 9 (pp. 103-9)

Animations: Anno Hideaki Fushigi no umi no Nadia (1989-90), episodes 1-4
Oct 11 Thanksgiving
Oct 13 —The Anime Machine Chapters 9-10 (pp. 110-123)

—Murakami Takashi, “A Theory of Super Flat Japanese Art.” In SUPER FLAT, ed. Murakami Takashi (Tokyo: MADRA Publishing, 2000), 8–25.

Oct 18 —The Anime Machine Chapters 11 (pp. 124-143)

—Takeda Yasuhiro, The Notenki Memoirs (A.D.Vision, 2005), 44-65; 80-85.

Animations: Tabaimo, Nippon tsûkin kaisoku (2001)

Daicon III & IV Opening Animations III & IV (1981 & 1983)

Oct 20 Animations: Anno Hideki, Fushigi no umi no Nadia (1989-90), episodes 13, 16, 17 and 19.
Oct 25 —The Anime Machine Chapters 12-14 (pp. 144-165)
Oct 27 Animations: Otaku no video & Anno Hideaki Fushigi no umi no Nadia (1989-90), last episode.
Nov 1 —The Anime Machine Chapters 15 (pp. 166-206)

Nov 3 Animations: Anno Hideaki, Shin seiki Evangerion: Death and Rebirth (1996?).

Nov 8 The Anime Machine Chapters 16 (pp. 209-20)

Animation: Satô Hiroaki, Key the Metal Idol (1994), episode 1
Nov 10 — The Anime Machine Chapters 17 (pp. 221-33)

Animations: Kase Mitsuko, Saishu heiki kanojo (2002), episode 1

Ishihara Tatsuya, Suzumiya Haruhi no yûutsu (2006), epi. 3

Asaka Morio, Chobits (2002), episode 1
Nov 15 —The Anime Machine Chapters 18-19 (pp. 234-51)

—CLAMP, Chobits, volume 1: 3-40.

—Saitô Tamaki, “Otaku Sexuality,” trans. Christopher Bolton, in Robot Ghosts and Wired Dreams: Japanese Science Fiction from Origins to Anime (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2007), 224–49.
Nov 17 Animations: Asaka Morio, Chobits (2002), episodes 2, 4, 7, 8
Nov 22 —The Anime Machine Chapters 20 (pp. 252-264)

—Azuma Hiroki, “The Animalization of Otaku Culture,” trans. Yuriko Furuhata and Marc Steinberg, in Mechademia 2: Networks of Desire (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2007), 175–88.

—Kotani Mari. “Doll Beauties and Cosplay,” trans. Thomas Lamarre, in Mechademia 2: Networks of Desire, 49–62.
Nov 24 Animations: Asaka Morio, Chobits (2002), episodes
Nov 29 —The Anime Machine Chapters 21-22 (pp. 265-299)

—Azuma Hiroki, “Super Flat Speculation,” in SUPER FLAT (Tokyo: Madras, 2000), 138–151.

Dec 1 Animations:

Ore no imôto wa konnani kawaii wake ga nai, episode 1

Kurage-hime, episode 1

Soredemo machi wa mawatteiru, episode 1


Dec 3 —The Anime Machine Conclusion (pp. 300-322)
Dec 10 PAPER 3 DUE

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