SAME AS V57.0569

This course will investigate Japanese performing arts in their cultural context, spanning historical times and the modern and contemporary eras. Students can expect to learn about Japan’s diversity and complexity through the imaginative, transgressive, and embodied medium of performance. They will gain insights into how art and society in Japan are closely entwined. This course will introduce students to noh, kyôgen, and kabuki as exemplars of Japanese tradition and will consider their aesthetic formation and social context in history as well as their impact today. We will consider Japan’s encounter with modernity in the early 20th century when aesthetic developments in Japanese theatre occurred in dialogue with European avant-gardism. Radical theatre and performance during the 1960s will be discussed in relation to the rise of student protest and the remaking of Japan after the Pacific War. We will consider how contemporary theatre and performance in Japan has developed in response to social, political, and technological changes as well as the economic malaise and environmental crises that Japan is facing today. A selection of plays and performances will be examined in English translation alongside the work of visionary thinkers, directors, and performance makers including artists working to develop interdisciplinary and transhistorical forms of theatre. We will study pioneers who have influenced Japanese performance practices including playwrights and directors such as Abe Kôbô, Yukio Mishima, Kishida Rio, Kawamura Takeshi, and Hirata Oriza. We will also study contemporary performance practitioners such as the butoh pioneers Hijikata Tatsumi, Ohno Kazuo, and Ashikawa Yoko, and groups such as Red Tent, dumb type, the Suzuki Company of Toga, and chelfitsch. No previous knowledge of theatre is needed to take this course.






Spring 2022

Peter Alexander Eckersall
MW: 9:30 AM - 10:45 AM 7E12 124 (SB)
Stephanie Choi
M: 6:20 PM - 8:50 PM ONLI
Yijun Wang
M: 9:30 AM - 12:15 PM KJCC 607

Fall 2022

Rebecca E Karl
TR: 11:00 AM - 12:15 PM BOBS LL141
Todd William Foley
MW: 11:00 AM - 12:15 PM 7E12 124 (SB)
Yijun Wang
R: 4:55 PM - 7:40 PM 60FA C12