MECHADEMIA: An Annual Forum for Anime, Manga and the Fan Arts. Mechademia’s subject area extends from manga and anime to game design, fashion, graphics, packaging, and toy industries, as well as a broad range of fan practices related to popular culture in Japan. We are interested in how the academic and fan communities can provide new possibilities for critical thinking and popular writing. MECHADEMIA appears annually, published by University of Minnesota Press.
“Volumes four and five of Frenchy Lunning’s excellent annual journal, Mechademia, continue the tradition which the previous three editions have established of bringing together extremely well written, provocative, and important essays on the state of the art of Japanese animation, both moving and static.”
— Journal of Contemporary Japanese Studies
“…recommended for all academic and public libraries.”
—Steve Raiteri, Library Journal
“…an informative and inspiring read for those curious beyond the skin of anime, and even more so for those who wish to read more into the impacts of Eastern culture on the West.”
—Nichi Bei Times Weekly
Frenchy Lunning received her doctorate from the University of Minnesota in Design Communications and Cultural Studies. She is a Professor of Liberal Arts at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design. Her work on American comic books and film led her to a discovery of anime and manga in the 1990’s and changed the focus of her studies. She is co-founder with Barbara Schulz of “SGMS: Schoolgirls and Mobilesuits: Culture and Creation in Manga and Anime,” an annual weekend workshop that features lectures from anime scholars, screenings, a Cosplay event and Fruits Basket Fashion Show (mcad.edu/anime ). She has written and lectured on the cultural implications and meanings of these works for a number of years before she founded Mechademia.
Christopher Bolton is Associate Professor of Comparative and Japanese Literature at Williams College. He is the author of Sublime Voices: The Fictional Science and Scientific Fiction of Abe Kôbô (Harvard Asia Center, 2009) and co-editor of Robot Ghosts and Wired Dreams: Japanese Science Fiction from Origins to Anime (Minnesota, 2007). You can find him at http://redcocoon.org.
Thomas LaMarre is Professor of East Asian Studies and Associate in Art History and Communications Studies at McGill University. His books include Shadows on the Screen: Tanizaki Jun’ichirô on Cinema and Oriental Aesthetics (2005), Uncovering Heian Japan: An Archaeology of Sensation and Inscription (2000), and The Anime Machine: A Media Theory of Animation (2009). He works on the editorial boards of positions, Traces, and transtextes/transcultures.
Michelle Ollie is the co-founder of The Center for Cartoon Studies (cartoonstudies.org). She was professor of Marketing for New York Institute of Technology Graduate Business Program and was a director and faculty at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design. She currently lives in Vermont and is both faculty and President at The Center for Cartoon Studies.
Wendy Goldberg is an English Instructor at the University of Mississippi. She has presented at numerous conferences on American comics in addition to anime and manga. Among her recent articles is “The Manga Phenomenon in America” inManga: An Anthology of Global and Cultural Perspectives (edited by Toni Johnson-Woods, Continuum, 2009).
Online Review and Commentary Editors
Margherita Long is Associate Professor of Comparative Literature and Foreign Languages at the University of California, Riverside. She is the author of This Perversion Called Love: Reading Tanizaki, Feminist Theory and Freud (Stanford, 2009). Her current project, with essays on manga and anime, is Energy Policy: Nature and Culture After Fukushima.
Graeme Stout teaches at the University of Minnesota and the Minneapolis College of Art and Design. His current book project studies the cultural legacy of terrorism in Italy and Germany from the late 1960s to the current day. He has articles in print or forthcoming in Seminar, Mosaic, and Public.
Brian Ruh is the author of Stray Dog of Anime: The Films of Mamoru Oshii. He is currently a PhD candidate in communication and culture at Indiana University-Bloomington.
Brent Allison received his Ph.D. in Social Foundations of Education at the University of Georgia in 2008. He is an Assistant Professor of Education at Gainesville State College. Brent regularly attends both academic and anime conventions to discuss his research on anime fans. You can find him atanimefandom.org.
C. B. Cebulski is a former comic book editor and talent manager who is now working on the other side of the desk as a freelance writer. His most notable comics include Drain, Wonderlost, and contributions to the Marvel Fairy Talesvolumes, among many other Marvel comics.
Patrick Drazen is the author of Anime Explosion: The What? Why? and Wow! of Japanese Animation (2003). He has written on anime for Animation, Student Filmmaker and Dreamscape among other magazines. He has lectured on anime in Chicago, San Francisco and Minneapolis, and was master of ceremonies for the Smithsonian Institution’s 2006 Anime Marathon. Patrick lives with his wife in Chicago.
Pamela Gossin holds a dual PhD in History of Science and English from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She is currently Associate Professor of Arts and Humanities at the University of Texas-Dallas and is the author of Thomas Hardy’s Novel Universe: Astronomy and the Cosmic Heroines of his Major and Minor Fiction (Ashgate Publishing, 2007) and the editor of Literature and Science: An Encyclopedia (Greenwood, 2002) as well as multiple articles on the relations of literature and science from the Scientific Revolution onward. She is currently working on her third book, tentatively entitled Poetic Cosmologies: Astronomy and the Literature of the Scientific Revolution. Her interdisciplinary humanities course “Reading and Writing Texts: Natural Wonders” (team-taught with Dr. Marc Hairston) was the first regular university course in the United States to feature manga and anime as required texts.
Marc Hairston is a professional space physicist at the University of Texas at Dallas who has turned his hobby into a second academic career. He has taught numberous courses about anime at UT Dallas, is a former contributor to Animericamagazine and is a regular speaker at the Schoolgirls and Mobilesuits workshops at Minneapolis College of Art and Design.
Trish Ledoux is an editor, rewriter, translator, scriptwriter, voice-actor, author, producer and first-time mom who fell down the anime rabbit hole some 20 years ago and hasn’t been up since. She began with Animag in the late ‘80s and continued on to be the founding editor of Animerica, writer of hundreds of ADR scripts, the voice of Princess Kahm in the U.S. Renditions version of Outlanders, co-author of The Complete Anime Guide, producer of Trouble Chocolate andProject Arms on DVD and, both under her own name and that of a handful of pseudonyms, is either the editor, translator, and/or rewriter of many popular manga titles including Ranma 1/2, InuYasha, Maison Ikkoku, Ceres, Kaze Hikaru, Here is Greenwood, volumes 1 through 18 of Rurouni Kenshin and currentlyNegima! for Del Rey. Nowadays, Trish is supremely content to be able to spend time with her famous spouse Toshi and their Fansview.com’s “Anime Personality of the Week” baby, Hajime.
John A. Lent has studied and researched Asian mass communication and popular culture since 1964, in the process writing and editing 60 books (some of which were the first on Asian comic art, animation, popular culture, film, press, broadcasting) and hundreds of articles. He is founding editor-in-chief ofInternational Journal of Comic Art, editor of Asian Cinema, chair of Asian Cinema Studies Society and two international bodies on comic art and on Asian popular culture. He has taught at the university level in the United States, Canada, Malaysia, and the Philippines since the 1960s.
Thomas Looser is Associate Professor in the Department of East Asian Studies at New York University. He received his B.A. in Cultural Anthropology from the University of California, Santa Cruz (1979) and his M.A. and Ph.D. in Anthropology from The University of Chicago (1999). Previously, he taught at McGill University and Emory University as an Assistant Professor in East Asian Studies. The author of many articles on Japan’s cultural and historical anthropology, cinema and new media, and globalization, his new book from the Cornell CEASS Series is entitledVisioning Eternity: Aesthetics, Politics, and History in the Early Modern Noh Theater (2008). Works in progress include a co-authored book on anime and new media in Japan and a volume on superflat art and 1990s Japan.
Miri Nakamura is Assistant Professor of Japanese at Wesleyan University.
Hajime Nakatani is Assistant Professor of East Asian Studies at McGill University, where he teaches East Asian visual culture and theories of representation. Nakatani received a Ph.D. from University of Chicago in art history and cultural anthropology, and taught East Asian art at Rice University before joining the faculty at McGill.
Susan J. Napier is a Professor of Japanese at Tufts University. A specialist in Japanese literature and popular culture, especially anime, she also works on science fiction and film. She is the author of Escape from the Wasteland: Romanticism and Realism in the Works of Mishima Yukio and Oe Kenzaburo, The Fantastic in Modern Japanese Literature: The Subversion of Modernity, Anime from Akira to Howl’s Moving Castle, and From Impressionism to Anime: Japan as Fantasy and Fan Cult in the Mind of the West.
Abé Mark Nornes is Professor of Asian Cinema at the University of Michigan. He is author of Japanese Documentary Film: Meiji Era to Hiroshima, Forest of Pressure: Ogawa Shinsuke and Postwar Japanese Documentary, and Cinema Babel: Translating Global Cinema (all University of Minnesota Press). He is co-author of the forthcoming A Research Guide to Japanese Film Studies (University of Michigan Center for Japanese Studies Publications Program). Nornes is currently editing a book on the pink film, co-editing a reader of Japanese film theory in translation, and writing a critical biography of Donald Richie.
Nora Paul is the director of the University of Minnesota’s Institute for New Media Studies, which focuses on content and storytelling in the evolving media environment. One of the major projects of the Institute is a Game Research and Virtual Environment Lab where social science, technology, and design questions about digital games will be researched and explored. Paul was formerly a faculty member at the Poynter Institute for Media Studies, a mid-career journalism training center in St. Petersburg, Florida (1991-2000), and editorial research director at the Miami Herald (1979-2000). She has an M.L.S. from Texas Women’s University.
Gilles Poitras, currently the Access services Librarian at Golden Gate University at San Francisco, has a M.L.I.S. from University of California at Berkeley and an M.A. in Theology from California State University at Chico. He is widely known for his many publications on anime, including The Anime Companion: What’s Japanese in Japanese Animation (Berkeley-Stone Bridge Press, 1998); Anime Essential (Berkeley-Stone Bridge Press, 2002), “Sounds and Their Significance” and “The Japanese Home” in Animeco, “View Point” in Japan Now: Bulletin of the Embassy of Japan, Washington DC (September 2000); and “Below the Surface” inNewtype USA (April 2003). He also has various web publications including The Anime Companion Supplement, The Librarian’s Guide to Anime and Manga, andUSA Anime and Manga Report available at http://www.koyagi.com/..
Marc Steinberg is Assistant Professor of Film Studies at the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema at Concordia University, Montreal. He has published essays inJapan Forum; Animation: An Interdisciplinary Journal, Parachute; Theory, Culture and Society; and Journal of Visual Culture. His book on the emergence of anime and the media mix is forthcoming from the University of Minnesota Press.
Toshiya Ueno is a professor in the department of Expressive Cultures at Wako University in Tokyo.
Theresa M. Winge is a professor of fashion design and theory at Indiana University-Bloomington, where she labors lovingly in fashion design studios and CAD (computer-aided design). Throughout her research, Winge focuses on the unique representations and meanings of dress within various subcultures. In recent years, she has researched and tendered presentations on extreme (subcultural) body modifications, Japanese street fashions, handcraft circles and products, eco-fashions, and roller derby dress. Winge draws on her diverse research areas to pollinate her fashion design, which is demonstrated in public exhibitions and international competitions. Winge is currently scribing her first book, titled Body Style, for Berg Publishers in the United Kingdom, which details subcultural dress of the global urban landscape.
Mark J. P. Wolf is an Associate Professor in the Communication Department at Concordia University Wisconsin. His Ph. D. (1995) is from the School of Cinematic Arts at the University of Southern California, and his books include Abstracting Reality: Art, Communication, and Cognition in the Digital Age (2000), The Medium of the Video Game (2001), Virtual Morality: Morals, Ethics, and New Media (2003),The Video Game Theory Reader (2003), The World of the D’ni: Myst and Riven(2006), The Video Game Explosion: A History from PONG to PlayStation and Beyond (2007), The Video Game Theory Reader 2 (2008), and J.R.R. Tolkien: Of Words and Worlds (forthcoming, 2009). He is on several editorial boards and advisory boards, and lives in Wisconsin with his wife Diane and his sons Michael, Christian, and Francis.
Wendy Siuyi Wong is the Chair of the Department of Design at York University in Toronto. Dr. Wong has been conducting research in the area of Chinese and Hong Kong visual culture and history including graphic design, comics and advertising images for over 16 years. She is the author of Hong Kong Comics: A History of Manhua (2002) published by Princeton Architectural Press, four books for Chinese readers, and numerous articles in academic and trade journals. She served as a visiting scholar at Harvard University from 1999 to 2000, and was the 2000 Lubalin Curatorial Fellow at the Cooper Union School of Art. Wong was the recipient of the Asian Cultural Council Grant, an affiliate of the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, in 1998. She taught in the United States and Hong Kong before she moved to Canada.
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