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2023/24 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

EAST3286 Advanced Japanese in Context: Culture and Identity

20 creditsClass Size: 25

Module manager: Dr Irena Hayter

Taught: Semester 1 (Sep to Jan) View Timetable

Year running 2023/24

Pre-requisite qualifications

Japanese Year Abroad (or equivalent)

Module replaces


This module is not approved as a discovery module


By the end of this module, students will:
- have gained significant knowledge of original Japanese texts dealing with intellectual history and cultural critique;
- have a high degree of competence in reading these texts;
- have a confident grasp of the broader socio-political and discursive contexts in which the texts emerged.

Skills outcomes
- close reading and translation;
- analysis and critique;
- sensitivity to the rhetorical strategies texts use in order to make their arguments.


The module will be run in student-led seminar-style classes. The selected readings, ranging from the 1890s to the present, will focus on the problems of cultural identity: how was "Japaneseness" imagined and constructed in a transnational age of capitalism and imperialism? How did Japanese intellectuals confront the implacable oppositions of the modern experience: between a past perceived as authentic and a superficial present; between individualism and belonging, politics and culture, local identifications and the national? Texts will include essays and articles by Natsume Sôseki, Tanizaki Jun'ichirô, Sakaguchi Ango, Kawabata Yasunari and others.

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Private study hours180.00
Total Contact hours20.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)200.00

Private study

90 hours preparation for classes
45 hours preparing critical essay
45 hours preparing for exam

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Ongoing monitoring of comprehension, translation, and critical analysis in student-led seminars.

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Essay3000 words50.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)50.00

Normally resits will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt, unless otherwise stated

Exam typeExam duration% of formal assessment
Standard exam (closed essays, MCQs etc) (S2)2 hr 50.00
Total percentage (Assessment Exams)50.00

Normally resits will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt, unless otherwise stated

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 02/08/2023


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