Fwd: PhD Kenkyukai 17 January Meeting: Auteurs and Anime

Ono Seiko and Aaron Gerow onogerow
Thu Dec 23 07:23:35 EST 1999

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December 21st, 1999

[apologies to those who receive duplicates of this post]

*PhD Kenkyukai 17 January Meeting: Auteurs and Anime*

Sick of just watching cartoons?  Come and talk about them!  
The next meeting of the PhD Kenkyukai will be Monday, 17 
January 2000, at 7 p.m. at International House in Roppongi.  
The speaker will be Hu Tze Yue (Gigi), a Ph.D candidate in 
comparative literature at the University of Hong Kong and a 
visiting researcher at Sophia University's Institute of 
Comparative Culture.  A capsule summary of Ms Hu's talk is 
at the end of this announcement.

Participants are welcome to join in an informal dinner at the 
I-House coffee shop before the talk, starting at about 6 p.m.  
Directions to International House are available on its Web site 
at www.i-house.or.jp.  Questions, or offers to present at future
meetings of the PhD Kenkyukai, should be directed to
Kenkyukai Coordinator Jon Marshall at
<jdmarshl at socrates.berkeley.edu>.

*Understanding Japanese Animation Cinema:
>From Miyazaki and Takahata films and the Application of the 
Auteur Model*

The current Pokemon craze in North America and Disney's 
acquisition of the international distribution rights of Hayao 
Miyazaki and Isao Takahata animation films are evidence of the 
worldwide popularity of Japanese animation.  In this 
presentation I will focus on the historical development of 
Japanese animation cinema and attempt to study 
Miyazaki-Takahata films using the auteur model.

The auteur model or author theory originated from France 
where a  group of film critics and filmmakers promoted `the 
auteur'  as a unique individual who tried to produce personal 
films within the constraints of commercial filmmaking. The 
theory is largely applied to analysis of live-action films, 
particularly American classic cinema of the 40s and 50s. In 
Japan, it has also been used to analyse films directed by Akira 
Kurosawa, Yasujiro Ozu etc.

In the context of animation studies, the auteur model is rarely 
applied largely because the medium has always been regarded 
as a children's genre. Thus, the second half of my presentation 
seeks to explore the validity of the auteur model in analysing 
Miyazaki-Takahata films. This method of analysis provides a 
theoretical framework to critically discuss Japanese animation 

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