2010-11 Catalog

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Offering Description

Times and Works of Soseki, Mishima, and Murakami: Literature, History, and Cinema

Spring quarter

Faculty: Harumi Moruzzi cultural studies, film studies, literature

Fields of Study: field studies, history, literature and moving image

Spring: CRN (Credit) Level 30060 (16) Fr; 30062 (16) So - Sr  

Credits: 16(S)

Class Standing: Freshmen - Senior; 25% of the seats are reserved for freshmenFreshmen - Senior

Offered During: Day


Nobody lives in a vacuum. Every person is a product of that person's time and place, even when he/she rebels against such a background. Most people in society conform to the current ideology of society in order to succeed and perhaps merely to get by, even when their society is moving toward spiritual bankruptcy. It is often believed that the artists and the intellectuals are the society's seers and prophets who can shed light on social and cultural problems, thus inspiring new directions for regeneration. This premise often yields an advantageous framework through which we can examine the society and culture that produced such artists and intellectuals.

The highly esteemed Japanese writers Soseki Natsume, Yukio Mishima, and Haruki Murakami are examples of such artists and intellectuals. They represent turbulent and paradigm-shifting periods in Japanese history: Meiji modernization, post-World War II devastation, and the advent of a rabid consumer society. In this program, we study the literary works of these three writers in the context of their times, with respective cultural and socio-economic structures, through lectures, workshops, films and seminars.

At the beginning of the quarter, students will be introduced to the rudiments of film analysis in order to develop a more critical attitude toward the film-viewing experience. Students will also be introduced to major literary theories in order to familiarize themselves with varied approaches to the interpretation of literature. Then, students will examine the selected works of Soseki, Mishima and Murakami through seminars and critical writings. Weekly film viewing and film seminars will accompany the study of literature and history in order to facilitate a deeper exploration of the topics and issues presented in their literary works.

Maximum Enrollment: 24

Preparatory for studies or careers in: Japanese literature and history, cultural studies and film studies.

Campus Location: Olympia

Online Learning: Enhanced Online Learning

Books: www.tescbookstore.com