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Remaking the Past in Contemporary Culture
Jane Austen and Co. explores the ways in which classical novels—particularly, but not exclusively, those of Jane Austen—have been transformed into artifacts of contemporary popular culture. Examining recent films, television shows, Internet sites, and even historical tours, the book turns from the question of Austen’s contemporary appeal to a broader consideration of other late-twentieth-century remakes, including Dangerous Liaisons, Dracula, Lolita, and even Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Taken together, the essays in Jane Austen and Co. offer a wide-ranging model for understanding how all of these texts—visual, literary, touristic, British, American, French—reshape the past in the new fashions, styles, media, and desires of the present.
In 1995 and 1996 six film or television adaptations of Jane Austen's novels were produced—an unprecedented number. More amazing, all were critical and/or box office successes. What accounts for this explosion of interest? Much of the appeal of these films lies in our nostalgic desire at the end of the millennium for an age of greater politeness and sexual reticence. Austen's ridicule of deceit and pretentiousness also appeals to our fin de siècle sensibilities. The novels were changed, however, to enhance their appeal to a wide popular audience, and the revisions reveal much about our own culture and its values. These recent productions espouse explicitly twentieth-century feminist notions and reshape the Austenian hero to make him conform to modern expectations. Linda Troost and Sayre Greenfield present fourteen essays examining the phenomenon of Jane Austen as cultural icon, providing thoughtful and sympathetic insights on the films through a variety of critical approaches. The contributors debate whether these productions enhance or undercut the subtle feminism that Austen promoted in her novels. From Persuasion to Pride and Prejudice , from the three Emmas (including Clueless ) to Sense and Sensibility , these films succeed because they flatter our intelligence and education. And they have as much to tell us about ourselves as they do about the world of Jane Austen. This second edition includes a new chapter on the recent film version of Mansfield Park .
Authorship and Personal Cinema
Alistair Fox explores the dynamics of the creative process involved in cinematic representation in the films of Jane Campion, one of the most highly regarded of contemporary filmmakers. Utilizing a wealth of new material -- including interviews with Campion and her sister and personal writings of her mother -- Fox traces the connections between the filmmaker's complex background and the thematic preoccupations of her films, from her earliest short, Peel, to 2009's Bright Star. He establishes how Campion's deep investment in family relationships informs her aesthetic strategies, revealed in everything from the handling of shots and lighting, to the complex system of symbolic images repeated from one film to the next.
"Clark's chapters on the significance of bathing in Japanese mythology and the historical development of communal bathing provide an excellent perspective from which to view modern practices." --Daily Yomiuri
Partnership for a Stable and Prosperous Future
This paper was delivered by Takaaki Kojima, Ambassador of Japan to Singapore, as a Public Lecture organized by the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies on 2 December 2006.
A Sincere and Open Partnership
This book contains the text of the Singapore Lecture delivered by Junichiro Koizumi on 14 January 2002.
Soft Power in Regional Diplomacy
In international relations today, influence is as essential as military and economic might. Consequently, leaders promote favorable images of the state in order to attract allies and win support for their policies. Jing Sun, an expert on international relations and a former journalist, refers to such soft power campaigns as "charm offensives." Sun focuses on the competition between China and Japan for the allegiance of South Korea, Taiwan, and other states in the region. He finds that, instead of adopting a one-size-fits-all approach, the Chinese and the Japanese deploy customized charm campaigns for each target state, taking into consideration the target's culture, international position, and political values. He then evaluates the effectiveness of individual campaigns from the perspective of the target state, on the basis of public opinion polls, media coverage, and the response from state leaders. A deep, comparative study, Japan and China as Charm Rivals enriches our understanding of soft power by revealing deliberate image campaign efforts and offering a method for assessing the effectiveness of such charm offensives.
This is an excellent and versatile textbook, as well as an intervention in the scholarly debate on the Asian economies. During the last few years Lim has paid particular attention to China, realizing that the Chinese and Japanese economies are complementary and dependent on each other. The chapters are free-standing, which makes it easier to use the book as a text, as the instructor can be selective, if needed. — Professor Hans C. Blomqvist, Swedish School of Economics and Business Administration, Helsinki, Finland"Professor Lim's book is not only a discussion of the Japanese upswing and decade-long plateau. Most of all it is about Japan's position in the interdependent economies of East and Southeast Asia. What this book convincingly demonstrates is that, despite the rise of China, the Japanese will remain a major source of expansion and innovation in ASEAN, in Asia and beyond." — Professor David Reisman, Department of Economics, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
Empire and World Order, 1914–1938
Japan joined the League of Nations in 1920 as a charter member and one of four permanent members of the League Council. Until conflict arose between Japan and the organization over the 1931 Manchurian Incident, the League was a centerpiece of Japan’s policy to maintain accommodation with the Western powers. The picture of Japan as a positive contributor to international comity, however, is not the conventional view of the country in the early and mid-twentieth century. Rather, this period is usually depicted in Japan and abroad as a history of incremental imperialism and intensifying militarism, culminating in war in China and the Pacific. Even the empire’s interface with the League of Nations is typically addressed only at nodes of confrontation: the 1919 debates over racial equality as the Covenant was drafted and the 1931–1933 League challenge to Japan’s seizure of northeast China. This volume fills in the space before, between, and after these nodes and gives the League relationship the legitimate place it deserves in Japanese international history of the 1920s and 1930s. It also argues that the Japanese cooperative international stance in the decades since the Pacific War bears noteworthy continuity with the mainstream international accommodationism of the League years. Thomas Burkman sheds new light on the meaning and content of internationalism in an era typically seen as a showcase for diplomatic autonomy and isolation. Well into the 1930s, the vestiges of international accommodationism among diplomats and intellectuals are clearly evident. The League project ushered those it affected into world citizenship and inspired them to build bridges across boundaries and cultures. Burkman’s cogent analysis of Japan’s international role is enhanced and enlivened by his descriptions of the personalities and initiatives of Makino Nobuaki, Ishii Kikujirô, Nitobe Inazô, Matsuoka Yôsuke, and others in their Geneva roles.
Environment, Economy, and Society
The ancient civilization of Japan, with its Shinto shrines and Buddhist temples, is also closely associated with all that is new and modern. Looking outward, Japan sees what it has become since Hiroshima: the world’s second-largest economy, a source of fury and wonder, a power without arms. Looking inward, Japan sees old ways shaken and new ones developing at a hectic pace. Japan in the Twenty-first Century offers compelling insights into the current realities of the country and investigates the crucial political, economic, demographic, and environmental challenges that face the nation. A combination of text, maps, and photographs provides an essential understanding of Japan’s geography, cultural heritage, demography, economic and political development, and of many other important issues. Pradyumna P. Karan explores the obstacles and opportunities that will shape Japan and affect the world community in the coming years. He highlights strategies and policies that will facilitate economic and political change and stimulate the development of effective institutions for long-term, sustainable prosperity and economic vitality. Unique field reports drawn from direct observations of events and places in Japan illuminate Japanese traditions and sensibilities. The first full-length English-language textbook on Japan’s geography, culture, politics, and economy to appear in nearly four decades, Japan in the Twenty-first Century will be a vital resource for researchers, academics, general readers, and students of Japan. Pradyumna P. Karan, professor of geography and Japan studies at the University of Kentucky, is the author or editor of numerous books on Asian geography and culture, including The Japanese City and Japan in the Bluegrass.