2019 Graduate Lecture in Culture and Arts S1B

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Academic unit or major
Graduate major in Social and Human Sciences
Hatanaka Kenji 
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Course description and aims

We discuss and scrutinize the important topics on the intellectual history in Japan with reading classical texts. This course introduces the works of Chikamatsu Monzaemon (1653-1725) and Motoori Norinaga (1730-1801), and focuses on "folly" in them. Why did Motoori affirm the "folly" of human beings? Why did Chikamatsu write a lot of tragedies of folly lovers? Through examination and interpretation of discourses in the 18th century Japan, students will be able to understand the comprehensive idea of folly and its historical contexts.

Student learning outcomes

At the end of this course, students will be able to:
1) Understand the characteristics and backgrounds of the historical ideas of folly in the 18th century Japan.
2) Obtain basic knowledge of interpretation methods and discourse analysis used in researches on the intellectual history.


Japan, intellectual history

Competencies that will be developed

Intercultural skills Communication skills Specialist skills Critical thinking skills Practical and/or problem-solving skills
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Class flow

Lectures with slides and video. Group discussion.

Course schedule/Required learning

  Course schedule Required learning
Class 1 Introduction to the "folly".
Class 2 Lecture 1: Society and Moral in the 18th Century Japan Watanabe, Nihon Seiji Shisoshi, 2010.
Class 3 Lecture 2: Between Literature and Moral - How to read “the Tales of Ise” and "the Tale of Genji" in the history Hino, Norinaga to Akinari, 1984. Noguchi, Genji Monogatari wo Edo kara Yomu, 1985.
Class 4 Reading 1: Motoori Norinaga - Why does the intelligence have to be criticized? Motoori, Shibun Yoryo, 1763.
Class 5 Discussion 1 Discussion about Motoori and the idea of folly in his works
Class 6 Reading 2: Chikamatsu Monzaemon (1653-1725) - Why the lovers make a foolish choice and come to the tragic end? Chikamatsu, Meido no Hikyaku, 1711.
Class 7 Discussion 2 Discussion about Chikamatsu and the folly in his plays
Class 8 Individual presentations Demonstrate understanding of some of the topics and the methods that have been studied.


Nothing required.

Reference books, course materials, etc.

Course materials are provided during class.

Assessment criteria and methods

Class participation: 40%
presentation and paper: 60%

Related courses

  • Graduate Lecture in Culture and Arts S1A

Prerequisites (i.e., required knowledge, skills, courses, etc.)

Nothing required

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