WOMENSTD 301 - Writing Japanese Women
Section: 001
Term: FA 2010
Subject: Women's Studies (WOMENSTD)
Department: LSA Women's Studies
Requirements & Distribution:
Waitlist Capacity:
Advisory Prerequisites:
Knowledge of Japanese is not required.
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:

This is a course on writing by and about women — women's self-representation and male major authors' representations of women — in Japanese culture. It begins by a feminist reading of one of the world's oldest (9th-11th c.) traditions of women's writing: the memoirs, poetry, and fiction of the Heian court ladies who produced the country's first canonical literature and permanently marked its cultural self-image. It moves on to examine the semiotics of the feminine in Japanese culture using the popular image of women (including the portrayal of Heian women authors and their works) in medieval didactic and gothic tales; in the narrative painting scrolls; in the Nô and Kabuki stage, where male actors performed the "quintessentially feminine" to admiring audiences; in wood-block prints of "beauties" (courtesans or geisha) and stories of "amorous women" in the thriving new merchant culture. The third section focuses on modern women's writing, in particular its resistance to the intervening representations of the feminine and its own productive rereading of the Heian "mothers" in the process of recuperating women's ancient place in the critical representation of Japanese society. Along with primary sources in literature and the visual arts, secondary sources will include theoretical readings in the psychology of sex, love, and death by Freud, Kristeva, Lacan, and Bataille; in the field of cultural production by Bourdieu; in feminist theories of reading in the Anglo-American academy. Materials and focus will vary from year to year.

To be offered in the fall semester alternately with ASIAN 300.

Requirements: three short essays, an oral presentation, and a final exam.

WOMENSTD 301 - Writing Japanese Women
Schedule Listing
001 (LEC)
MW 1:00PM - 2:30PM
NOTE: Data maintained by department in Wolverine Access. If no textbooks are listed below, check with the department.

ISBN: 0670030201
The Tale of Genji, Author: Murasaki Shikibu, Publisher: Penguin Classics COMPLETE 0003
ISBN: 9780939512805
The Kagero? diary : a woman's autobiographical text from tenth-century Japan, Author: Michitsuna no Haha, ca. 935-995., Publisher: Center for Japanese Studies, University of Michigan 1997
ISBN: 0684838249
Sexuality and the psychology of love, Author: Sigmund Freud ; with an introd. by the editor, Philip Rieff., Publisher: Simon & Schuster 1st Touchs 1997
Other Textbook Editions OK.
ISBN: 9780394509457
Masks, Author: Enchi, Fumiko, 1905-1986., Publisher: Knopf 1983
ISBN: 9780824821722
The father-daughter plot : Japanese literary women and the law of the father, Publisher: University of Hawai'i Press 2001
ISBN: 9780399505256
Snow country, Author: Kawabata, Yasunari., Publisher: Putnam 1981
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