This module explores the world of Japanese manga from its history, genres, authors and audiences to global success in film and anime adaptations.
Since the 1990s, this visual medium has opened up to the West. Famous artists like Tezuka Osamu, Urasawa Naoki, Ikeda Riyoko and Aoike Yasuko have been translated into many languages.
In this module we will explore the function of manga in Japanese postwar history and society, analysing manga genres for different target groups (girls' and boys' manga, boys' love, rorikon and yaoi).
Special consideration is given to traditional gender roles in Japan (sararīman and OL) as well as their erosion which entails new trends, topics and visual styles. We then scrutinise the depiction of recent economic and demographic changes in Japanese society (ageing, frītā, otaku), the popularity of robotic heroes, as well as the development of time travel narratives and attitudes towards death. The aim of the module is to understand the core elements of Japanese manga addiction and the reasons for the current "mangamania" in the West.
All sources and texts will be in English. No Japanese language proficiency required.