2018 AJLS Conference

Woodblock print of a monk inspecting a samurai


The 2018 AJLS Conference seeks to address the history and theory of Japanese literature and media with  special attention given to the ways in which writers have grappled with the problems of evidence, transmission, and inheritance and how these problems continue to renew and complicate the relation between the past, present, and future. 

From questions surrounding lines of hermeneutic authority in secret transmission and early textual scholarship, to the emergence of new modes of inquiry in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries based on models from late imperial China and early modern Europe, to the anxieties surrounding fears over the loss of cultural authority at various moments of rupture (both political and seismic) across the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, Japanese literature has been centrally preoccupied with the past and the future—how it can be known and transmitted—as well as with anxieties over forgery, inauthenticity, and cultural loss. Questions to be addressed include the following: 

• What are the different types of evidence? When does evidence need persuasion? When does it become a symptom? 

• How might evidence encode reading practices? How do reading practices create evidence? 

• What constitutes evidence in Buddhist texts? What is the relationship between evidence and Buddhist doctrinal truth? What is scriptural evidence? 

• How do texts function as historical evidence? How do they foreshadow the future? How might evidence endure across generations and speak to the future? 



In Celebration of the 10th Anniversary of the C. V. Starr East Asian Library & Chang-Lin Tien Center for East Asian Studies

Some presentations will be in Japanese. Registration for this seminar is now closed.

1:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. | Kotenseki Seminar (Art History Seminar Room, C.V. Starr East Asian Library)

1:00 p.m. - 1:10 p.m. | Introduction

1:10 p.m. - 2:10 p.m. | Part A: 仏書について On Buddhist Texts

Hiroshi Ochiai, NIJL 日本の仏書の書誌学: UCB東アジア図書館賀蔣(Ho-Chiang)コレクション本を用いて
The Bibliography of Japanese Buddhist Texts in the Ho-Chiang Collection in the C. V. Starr EastAsian Library

Mark Blum, University of California, Berkeley 日本仏教における近代化としての宗派別聖典作成
Inventing Sectarian Canons as Modernization in Japanese Buddhism

2:10 p.m. - 3:10 p.m. | Part B: 写本について On Manuscripts

Tomoko Koida, NIJL 奈良絵本について: UCB東アジア図書館三井文庫蔵『文正草子』を例として
On the Nara-ehon: the Bunshō zōshi of the Mitsui Collection of the C. V. Starr East Asian Library

Keisuke Unno, NIJL 写本の生成: 添削、編集、モノとしての三条西家詠草
The Creation of Manuscripts: Editing, Compilation, and the Materiality of Sanjō-nishi Family Waka Poetry

3:20 p.m. - 4:20 p.m. | Part C: 刊本について On Printed Books

Atsushi Iriguchi, NIJL 刊本を筆写した写本について: UCB東アジア図書館三井文庫蔵本を用いて
On Manuscript Copies of Printed Books: Examples from the C. V. Starr East Asian Library’s Mitsui Collection

Ken’ichi Kansaku, NIJL 〈刊本の書誌学〉刊記と刊・印・修: UCB東アジア図書館三井文庫蔵『百人一首像讃抄』を例として
An Introduction to the Bibliography of Block-Printed Books, Kanki (Colophons) and Kan, In, Shū: the Hyakunin isshu zōsanshō of the Mitsui Collection of the C. V. Starr East Asian Library

4:20 p.m. - 4:30 p.m. | Special Introduction

Kenji Kobayashi, NIJL 〈ないじぇる芸術共創ラボ〉の紹介
Introducing NIJL’s Arts Initiative

5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. | Keynote Address (Morrison Library)
Attendance open to the general public, registration requested

Robert Campbell, NIJL, Director General
Tales of Transmission in Nineteenth Century: Japanese Literature and Visual Art

7:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. | Keynote Reception (Morrison Library)

Sponsored by C. V. Starr East Asian Library and the Center for Japanese Studies, University of California, Berkeley, and the National Institute of Japanese Literature


Attendance open to the general public, registration requested

9:45 a.m. – 10:00 a.m. | Introduction (190 Doe Library)

10:00 a.m. – 11:45 a.m. | Panel 1: Sparkling Manuscripts, Sparkling Evidence: The Role of Manuscripts in the Edo Period (190 Doe Library)

Motoi Katsumata, Meisei University
The Story of a Crazy Katana: The Relation Between Fact and Gossip in the Edo Manuscripts

Takahiro Sasaki, Keiō Institute of Oriental Classics
The Makura no sōshi Abridged Version from the UC Berkeley East Asian Library

Jonathan Zwicker, University of California, Berkeley
Manuscript Culture in the Age of Print: Authority and Authorship in the Work of Kyokutei Bakin

Matthew Fraleigh, Brandeis University | Discussant

11:45 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. | Break

1:00 p.m. – 2:45 p.m. | Panel 2A: Epistemicity and Evidence in Narrating: Case Studies from Heian Monogatari, Kundoku Readings of Sūtras, and Omorosōshi (180 Doe Library)

Charles J. Quinn, The Ohio State University
The Epistemic/Evidential Dimension in Heian Japanese

Frederick C. Bowman, The Ohio State University
Four Narrative Style in Heian Japanese: Aspect, Tense, and Evidentiality

John Bundschuh, The Ohio State University
Evidence in Heian Buddhist Kundokugo Narration

Rumiko Shinzato, Georgia Institute of Technology
Evidential Continuum, Point of View, and the Order Pairing of Think and Say Verbs in the Okinawan Shamanic Texts, Omoro sōshi

1:00 p.m. – 2:45 p.m. | Panel 2B: The Emergent Populace in Japan’s 1980’s (190 Doe Library)

Ikuho Amano, University of Nebraska, Lincoln
An Apologia for Generation “S”: Quiet Social Engagement in Somewhat, Crystal after 33 Years

Raechel Dumas, San Diego State University
Atsumenia: Strategic Accumulation and Networks of Desire in Collection-Based Smartphone Games

Yoshihiro Yasuhara, Carnegie Mellon University
The Intersection of Advertising, Poetry, and Media: Amano Yūkichi’s Theorization of Japan’s 1980’s

2:45 pm – 3:15 pm | Break

3:15 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. | Panel 3A: Reading Objects and Images: Material Evidence and the Space of Cultural Production in Contemporary Japan (180 Doe Library)

Camila Gutiérrez and Kendra McDuffie, The Pennsylvania State University
A Rhizomatic Reading of Literary Transmissions in Material Culture through kimono and jojou- ga shoujo manga

Victoria Lapascu, The Pennsylvania State University
Graffiti as Listening to the Walls Speak about Dissent: SUIKO, SASU, and KAMI’s How To Guide

Luciana Sanga, Stanford University
Material Form, Genre and Reception: The Case of Setouchi Jakuchō’s “Kashin”

Kelly Hansen, Okayama University
Encoding of Gender in the Filmography of Hara Setsuko

3:15 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. | Panel 3B: Excursions in Style: Allusion as the Site of Past, Present, and Future in Medieval and Early Edo Poetic Practice (190 Doe Library)

Bonnie McClure, University of California, Berkeley
Undertones of Longing: Honkadori and Figurative Expression in Shinkokinshū-era Waka

Kai Xie, Kenyon College
Identification with or Distance from Chinese Poetry? ‘Chinese-Style’ Haikai by Bashō’s Circle

Kendra Strand, University of Iowa
Revisiting Old Souvenirs: Genroku Travel Anthologies, Bashō’s Narrow Road, and the Construction of a Genre

Joseph Sorensen, University of California, Davis | Moderator

5:15 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. | Keynote Panel (180 Doe Library)

Yoshitaka Hibi, Etsuko Taketani, Indra Levy, Christina Laffin, and Anne McKnight (moderator)
Evidence and the Challenges of the Humanities


Attendance open to the general public, registration requested

9:00 a.m. – 10:45 a.m.| Panel 4A: A World of Allusions: Inter-medial and Intertextual Evidence inModern Japanese Fiction (180 Doe Library)

Joanne Quimby, St. Olaf College
Performative Citation and Allusion in Matsuura Rieko’s Oyayubi P no shugyō jidai—Interrogating Matsuura’s “Inheritances”

Michele Eduarda Brasil de Sá, University of Brasília
Murakami on the Shore: Between Japanese Tradition and Western Influence

Atsuko Sakaki, University of Toronto
Picture Imperfect: Gotō Meisei’s Shintoku mondō and the Conundrums of Photodocumentary

9:00 a.m. – 10:45 a.m. | Panel 4B: Evidence Interrupted: Broken Lines and Nonlinear Transmission, from Ancient to Modern Times (190 Doe Library)

Matthew Mewhinney, Boston University
Evincing Experience: Lyric in Natsume Sōseki’s Recollecting and Such

Azusa Ōmura, Yamanashi Prefectural University
A Successor or a Pioneer: Horiguchi Daigaku and Japanese Poetry in Literary Magazines

Marjorie Burge, University of Chicago
The Tragedy of Failed Transmission: The Ōmi Court in Literary Imagination

Lewis Cook, Queens College, C.U.N.Y.
Stalking the Untamed Colophon: Scripts for Inheritance, Authorization and Transmission of Medieval Literary Manuscripts

11:00 a.m. – 12:45 p.m. | Panel 5A: Visual Evidence: Reconstructing Practice and Performance through Woodblock Prints and Illustrated Books (180 Doe Library)

Pedro Bassoe, Willamette University
With a Single Glance: Visual Evidence in the Reconstruction of Historical Reading Practices in Meiji Japan

Michael Toole, University of Wisconsin-Madison
The Body as Evidence: Revisualizing Race in Meiji Japan

Katherine Saltzman-Li, University of California, Santa Barbara
Understanding Kabuki through Print Series: Early Modern Theatre and Modern Scholarship

11:00 a.m. – 12:45 p.m. | Panel 5B: Re-Figuring Women of the Past in Medieval and Early Modern Japan (190 Doe Library)

Linda Chance, University of Pennsylvania
Trouble All Around: Ichijō Kaneyoshi and Women’s Authority

Shiho Takai, Waseda University
Transmitting Myth and Magic: Early Modern Adaptations of the Dōjōji Legend in Jōruri Puppet Plays

Jamie Newhard, Washington University in St. Louis
Modular Morals: Biography in Seventeenth-Century Didactic Books for Women

Gergana Ivanova, University of Cincinnati
Literary Prowess Repackaged for Women of the Late Edo Period: The Case of Onna yūshoku mibae bunko

Christina Laffin, University of British Columbia | Discussant

12:45 a.m. – 1:45 p.m. | Break

1:45 p.m. – 3:05 p.m. | Panel 6: Adaptation as Evidence: Japanese Literary Genres & Their Legal Contexts (190 Doe Library)

Raj Lakhi Sen, Tokyo University of Foreign Studies
Adaption of Adoption Law on the Verge of Modern-state Building: Decoding Shakespeare’s Tragedies Adapted by Jōno Saigiku

Younglong Kim, Waseda University
Adapting the Stenographic Record of Tokyo Trial: Reading Kinoshita Junji’s Between God and Man

Mamoru Fujita, Keiō University
Dynamics of Adapting Imperfect Memories and Laws of Indies: Interpreting Tsushima Yuko's Jakkha Dukhni: Stories of Oceans’ Memories

Anne McKnight, Shirayuri University | Discussant

3:10 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. | Panel 7: Japanese Literature and its Evidentiary Futures (190 Doe Library)

Hoyt Long, University of Chicago
Literary Canon Formation in the Digital Age

Molly Des Jardin, University of Pennsylvania
Constructing Our Canon(s): Reprinting & Digitizing Literary Heritage

Jonathan E. Abel, The Pennsylvania State University
New Positivism, Same as the Old Positivism

Ted Mack, University of Washington | Discussant

4:30 p.m. – 4:45 p.m. | Closing remarks (190 Doe Library)



Kotenseki Seminar | 日本古典籍セミナーEast Asian Library

Art History Seminar Room, C. V. Starr East Asian Library

Keynote Address

Morrison Library (101 Doe Library)


AJLS ConferenceDoe Library

"A" Panels
180 Doe Library

Keynote Panel
190 Doe Library

"B" Panels
190 Doe Library



​Public TransitBART SFO-Downtown Berkeley
BART operates rapid rail service to Berkeley from SFO. The SFO BART Station is located on the Departures/Ticketing Level of the International Terminal (Boarding Area G side). BART is easily accessed from any terminal by riding SFO's AirTrain to the Garage G/BART Station stop. 

Take the Pittsburgh/Bay Point Line to 19th St/Oakland, transfer to the Richmond Line, and exit at Downtown Berkeley.

$9.80 (with Clipper Card) or $10.30 (with paper ticket), one way

Shared-ride Vans
Van service is available on a walk-up basis. However, passengers are advised to make reservations for service after 11:00 p.m. Shared-ride vans pick up passengers on the Departures/Ticketing Level from the roadway center island at all terminals.

Transportation Network Companies, such as Uber and Lyft, are allowed to pick-up and drop-off at SFO. Currently, you can expect to pay as little as $35 for a one-way trip to Berkeley with shared rides like Pool or Line when there is no price surging due to increased demand. 

Taxis depart from the designated taxi zones located at the roadway center islands, on the Arrivals/Baggage Claim Level of all terminals. $80-100


Public TransitBART OAK-Downtown Berkeley

BART operates rapid rail service to Berkeley from OAK. The OAK BART Station is located just across from the Terminal 1 baggage claim area and a short walk from Terminal 2.

Take BART from OAK to Coliseum Station. From Coliseum Station, board the Richmond-bound train to Downtown Berkeley Station.

$8.80 (with Clipper Card) or $9.30 (with paper ticket), one way

The AC Transit (bus) Line 73 connects OAK with the Coliseum/Oakland Airport BART station every 15 minutes between 4:56 a.m. and 12:06 a.m. Local bus fare is $2.10.

Transportation Network Companies, such as Uber and Lyft, are allowed to pick-up and drop-off at OAK. Currently, you can expect to pay as little as $12 for a one-way trip to Berkeley with shared rides like Pool or Line when there is no price surging due to increased demand. 

Shuttles, Taxis, Limos
Please check the Oakland International Airport website for a full list of all companies that offer shuttle, taxi, and limo service to and from Berkeley.


Doe Memorial Library is roughly .6 miles from the Downtown Berkeley BART station. It takes about 15 minutes by foot

You can also take the Perimeter Line Campus Shuttle from the corner of Shattuck Avenue and Berkeley Square to the Evans Hall Hearst Mining Circle Stop, and the library is about a 5 minute walk. Fare is $1.