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ISTR/Faculty of Arts Research Seminar Series 2012 - A/Prof Anne Collett - "What I learnt from Japan"

Date:Wednesday, 7 November 2012
Time:12:30pm to 2pm

ISTR/Faculty of Arts Research Seminar Series 2012 - Presents:
A/Prof Anne Collett - School of English Literatures and Philosophy
"What I learnt from Japan"

My 10 month term as the Visiting Professor of Australian Studies at the University of Tokyo began in October 2011. I arrived with 2 large suitcases, 4 boxes of books, a roll of Australian art posters and very little idea of what Japan or the University of Tokyo would be like. My daughter found my claim of a ‘life-long interest in Japanese culture’ very amusing, the only signs of which she had seen were the origami crane mobiles I made with her in the dim years of early childhood. It would certainly be true to say that my understanding of Japan was limited to some reading of scattered haiku, Basho’s Narrow Road to the Deep North, Murakami's Norwegian Wood, the first few chapters of The Tale of Genji and The Pillow Book, and Robin Gerster's Legless in Ginza; an appreciation of Japanese minimalism in architecture and furnishing; an inclination toward simplicity and asymmetry in my flower arranging; and an interest in the impact of Japanese art and literature on European modernism. Needless to say, all was before me. This presentation will begin with a brief personal reflection on the Japan I encountered 6 months after 3/11; and move on to talk in main about my experience as a teacher and researcher at the University of Tokyo.

Bio- data

Associate Prof Anne Collett teaches in the English Literatures program at the University of Wollongong. Recently returned from Japan where she was the Visiting Professor of Australian Studies at the University of Tokyo, she has published essays on that experience in the Newsletter of the Centre for Pacific and American Studies (University of Tokyo) and on response to the Great East Japan earthquake and tsunami of 3/11 in Social Alternatives (forthcoming 32:3). Anne has published widely on postcolonial literatures, in particular, on poetry and women’s writing from the Caribbean, Australia, South Africa and Canada. She is the editor of Kunapipi: Journal of Postcolonial Writing & Culture.

All Welcome. Please RSVP to Vicki Crinis for Catering Purposes.

Contact:Vicki Crinis []