On 2 June 2019 there will be a reading and party to launch the first three of this year's Isobar books.
1) NOON: An Anthology of Short Poems, edited by Philip Rowland, is a selection of poems from the Tokyo-based online journal NOON: journal of the short poem (also edited by Philip) that appeared between 2004 and 2017.
‘Short’ here means ‘fewer than fourteen lines’, and some of the poems are very short indeed: the shortest are only one or two words long. Philip has assembled a strikingly various renga-like chain of over two hundred minimalist poems by almost half as many poets, so – remarkably – the book can be read poem by poem or it can be read straight through as a single sequence with multiple authors.
'It cheers me up that there are still people on the planet who think poetry is worth such care and attention' Geraldine Monk
'Evidences the wealth of the minimalist tradition, resolutely international' – Alistair Noon
2) Other/Wise by Gregory Dunne is a volume of poems with a strongly autobiographical flavour. Gregory has lived in Japan for many years; he is the author of Quiet Accomplishment, a prose memoir of Cid Corman, who was a good friend. Part 1 ofOther/Wise is set in the US, and parts 2 and 3 in Japan. There are poems of friendship, marriage, family and vocation, and elegies for teachers, friends and parents, with a particularly strong group of poems of marriage and family in part 3.
'An open-hearted journey of fatherhood, friendship, and faith faith in the honest truths to be found in this life and celebrated in poetry' Richard Jones)
3) On Arrival gathers many of the poems Paul Rossiter wrote in the 1980s, most of them with East or South East Asian settings. There are poems from the Philippines, South Korea, Indonesia and Thailand, plus one each from the USA and Australia. The title section of the book consists of ‘notebook poems’ chronicling the author’s first year in Japan in 1981–1982, and there is also a section titled ‘Current Accounts’, which consists of short sharp comments on public events towards the end of the decade: perestroika, economic bubbles, the rise of fundamentalism, and the first Gulf War.
There is more information about all three books, plus PDF samples from the books and links to the various Amazons on the Isobar Press website.
Please come and help to celebrate the publication of these books!
DATE: 2 June 2019
TIME: Doors open 19:00, readings start at 19:30
PLACE: Flying Books, 6-3 Dogenzaka 1-Chome, Shibuya, 150-0043
ENTRANCE: ¥1500 (includes one free drink)
A cash bar will be open during the event. No reservation necessary.
Prof. Kai Kappel (Humboldt University of Berlin):
"Architecture of Cultural Exchange: Japan and Western Modernism 1900–1939, Interweaving Histories"
(Monday, 13 May, 6pm - 8pm)
This lecture focuses on the multifaceted processes of exchange between Japanese and European/American architects at the beginning of the 20th century, in particular between the two World Wars. A closer look at architects’ travels, research trips and the mutual reception of journals, books and manifestos (including photography) could shed new light on our understanding of this cultural exchange of interweaving histories and multiple modernities.
On the one hand, “western” architects disseminated new construction methods while simultaneously discovering the timeless qualities of traditional Japanese architecture; on the other hand, Japanese architects – in particular those who had studied Art Nouveau in Vienna, concrete architecture in France, expressionism, modernist urban structures, Bauhaus design in Germany or wooden constructions in Scandinavia – raised the question about the role of what might be considered intrinsically “Japanese” within the international modernist movement.
Lecture will take place in the Akamon General Research Bldg., Room 742, University of Tokyo, Hongo Campus (building no. 38 on this map).
"Problematic Pasts and Fearful Futures:
Where Do We Go from Here?"
The Liberlit conference is an ongoing forum for literature teachers and academics based in Japan that addresses attitudes and approaches to literary texts in English, and seeks to discuss how and why literature should figure in Japan’s English curriculum.
2019 marks the tenth year of the annual Liberlit conference, and it seems like a suitable time to pause and reflect on the nature of the past and the present. How has the past informed our understanding of the present? In what ways has it been created, manipulated, obscured or curated through text? As educators, do we participate in this process knowingly or unknowingly? Reluctantly or enthusiastically?
The same might be asked about our concepts of the future, from the expression of hopes and dreams through dystopic fatalism, to the expansive recanvassing of reality that can take place in, for example, speculative fiction. Our yesterdays and tomorrows can collide as well, resulting in a profound sense of surreality.
The schedule for the day is now finalized, with nearly 50 speakers and four parallel sessions. The cost has been kept to 3,000 yen, and there is no charge for students. The plenary lecture is by Professor Michael Pronko.
The conference will also feature a postgraduate parallel session in which literature students present 20-minute papers in English. A prize is given to the best paper.
More details are available on the Liberlit website.
An Informal Round Table Discussion & Wine
with Dr Sarah Olive:
'Shakespeare Education in Japan for the New Era'
This is an announcement of a study meeting on the topic of "Shakespeare Education in Japan for the New Era" to be held at Toyo University, with Dr Sarah Olive (University of York / Visiting Professor of Toyo University for 2019)
This meeting will be very informal, and all participants will be invited to freely exchange ideas & information on this topic from their professional and pedagogical perspectives in a relaxed atmosphere. Anyone interested in Sarah's recent research and/or in creating a research network is welcome.
Participants might expect to hear updates on Sarah’s recent research on Shakespeare in East Asian education, Vietnamese education and popular culture. Please book a place by email to Hirohisa Igarashi (email@example.com) by 14 May.
Thursday, 23 May 2019, 14.45-17.30
Toyo University Hakusan Campus (Graduate School
Seminar Room 7 [8号館5階大学院 セミナー室７]） & Tres Dining)
Organiser: Hirohisa Igarashi (Toyo University)
Part 1: An Informal Round Table Discussion (14.45-16.00)
Venue: Toyo University Hakusan Campus, Building 8 (Graduate School Seminar Room 7 [8号館5階大学院セミナー室］) (Link)
Part 2: Wine Party (16.00-17.30)
Venue: Hakusan Tres Dining (Link)
Fee: About 3,000 yen (to be collected at the door)
Spring is for love, poetry, friends, good food and drinks. The inspiring group of 欲望工学 DESIRE ENGINEERING teams up with poets Jordan A. Y. Smith, Magdalena Edwards, Miki Yuuri, and Marcellus Nealy and lo-fi bedroom electro band Santa Dharma, for an evening celebrating the best of spring: the things and the people we love. 3000 yen advance ticket for specially cooked buffet (with veggie/halal/kosher options) and open bar.
All at Tokyo's amazing venture capital lab, EDGEof––one of the first arts/humanities-based events to be hosted there (https://edgeof.co/). Graffiti wall, poetry readings, mellow music, loads of time to socialize and get deep with friends new and old.
April 24, 2019 7 PM
EDGEof in Shibuya (1 Chome-11-3 Jinnan, Shibuya)
– 3000 yen / person; reservations required (no cash accepted at door)
– price includes buffet dinner (vegetarian, kosher, halal, and allergen-free options)
– open bar
Details and reservations (REQUIRED so the chefs can prepare the right amount) here: https://peatix.com/event/636416/view
Tokyo Humanities - Events
Upcoming humanities-related events in Tokyo.