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Elaine T. Gerbert
University of Kansas, Lawrence (Lawrence, KS 66045-7505)
The Transformation of Vision: A Study of the Thematization of Vision in Modern Japanese Literature

Studies on modern Japanese literature have for the most part been language centered, emphasizing linguistic relationships and literary influences to the near exclusion of any consideration of the verbal culture in which the writings were grounded. This project examines the impact of new vision technology on verbal imagination by focusing on the thematization of vision in Japanese prose literature of roughly the first quarter of the 20th century, a period coincident with the emergence of a new mechanized visual regime in which magic lanterns, panoramas, cameras, stereoscopes, motion pictures, and mass-produced illustrated magazines led to new experiences of time and space and transformed relationships between viewing subject and object. In an era when technologies of image production are determining relationships between individuals and nations, the need for studies that examine the effects of visual culture upon literary culture is timely and compelling.

Project fields:
Asian Literature

Fellowships for University Teachers

Research Programs

$40,000 (approved)
$40,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
8/1/2004 – 6/30/2005