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02 September 2008 @ 03:31 pm
book searches and the like  
first off, I had no idea this existed:

ISBNdb.com
Yep, for all of your ISBN searches.  It's slow, but ... it's there.  And I'm kind of stoked.  In a completely nerdy way.  So of course I immediately look for Japanese science fiction. 

Now for the books:
1) Accomplices of silence; the modern Japanese novel Miyoshi Masao. 

2) Robot ghosts and wired dreams : Japanese science fiction from origins to anime 
Japanese science fiction lit criticsm. 
Robot Ghosts and Wired Dreams remedies this neglect with a rich exploration of the genre that connects prose science fiction to contemporary anime. Bringing together Western scholars and leading Japanese critics, this groundbreaking work traces the beginnings, evolution, and future direction of science fiction in Japan, its major schools and authors, cultural origins and relationship to its Western counterparts, the role of the genre in the formation of Japan’s national and political identity, and its unique fan culture.
Covering a remarkable range of texts—from the 1930s fantastic detective fiction of Yumeno Kyûsaku to the cross-culturally produced and marketed film and video game franchise Final Fantasy—this book firmly establishes Japanese science fiction as a vital and exciting genre.
Contributors: Hiroki Azuma; Hiroko Chiba, DePauw U; Naoki Chiba; William O. Gardner, Swarthmore College; Mari Kotani; Livia Monnet, U of Montreal; Miri Nakamura, Stanford U; Susan Napier, Tufts U; Sharalyn Orbaugh, U of British Columbia; Tamaki Saitô; Thomas Schnellbächer, Berlin Free U.

NOTE:  THIS IS EXACTLY THE RESEARCH I WANT TO WORK ON... EXACTLY.  LIKE IT'S CREEPY.

3) The Spiteful Planet and other stories.  by Shinichi Hoshi
Translated Japanese Science Fiction.  The only book our library has in this category.  I think I've actually read this - it's old school science fiction at it's best, but if I'm working on Abe Kobo's 1920s work then I shouldn't stick up my nose at something like this, should i?

4) Japanese Science Fiction: A View of a Changing Society (1989)
So it's kind of a scholarly tome, the kind that has an introduction and goes through the "time periods" of science fiction, which basically puts me to sleep, but it's something I really need to read.  *REALLY*

5) Complicit Fictions: the subject in the modern Japanese prose narrative, James A. Fujii
In Complicit Fictions, James Fujii challenges traditional approaches to the study of Japanese narratives and Japanese culture in general. He employs current Western literary-critical theory to reveal the social and political contest inherent in modern Japanese literature and also confronts recent breakthroughs in literary studies coming out of Japan. The result is a major work that explicitly questions the eurocentric dimensions of our conception of modernity.
Modern Japanese literature has long been judged by Western and Japanese critics alike according to its ability to measure up to Western realist standards--standards that assume the centrality of an essential self, or subject. Consequently, it has been made to appear deficient, derivative, or exotically different. Fujii challenges this prevailing characterization by reconsidering the very notion of the subject. He focuses on such disparate twentieth-century writers as Natsume Soseki, Tokuda Shusei, Shimazaki Toson, and Origuchi Shinobu, and particularly on their divergent strategies to affirm subjecthood in narrative form. The author probes what has been ignored or suppressed in earlier studies--the contestation that inevitably marks the creation of subjects in a modern nation-state. He demonstrates that as writers negotiate the social imperatives of national interests (which always attempt to dictate the limits of subjecthood) they are ultimately unable to avoid complicity with the aims of the state.
Fujii confronts several historical issues in ways that will enlighten historians as well as literary critics. He engages theory to highlight what prevailing criticism typically ignores: the effects of urbanization on Japanese family life; the relation of literature to an emerging empire and to popular culture; the representations of gender, family, and sexuality in Meiji society. Most important is his exposure of the relationship between state formation and cultural production. His skillful weaving of literary theory, textual interpretation, and cultural history makes this a book that students and scholars of modern Japanese culture will refer to for years to come.

6) Recontextualizing Texts: Narrative Performance in Modern Japanese Fiction, Sakaki Atsuko
Offering the first systematic examination of five modern Japanese fictional narratives, all of them available in English translations, Atsuko Sakaki explores Natsume Soseki's Kokoro and The Three-Cornered World; Ibuse Masuji's Black Rain; Mori Ogai's Wild Geese; and Tanizaki Jun'ichiro's Quicksand. Her close reading of each text reveals a hitherto unexplored area of communication between narrator and audience, as well as between "implied author" and "implied reader." By using this approach, the author situates each of these works not in its historical, cultural, or economic contexts but in the situation the text itself produces.