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Winner of the 2018 Capstone Editing Early Career Academic Research Grant for Women

Posted by Capstone Editing on 31 August 2018

Winner of the 2018 Capstone Editing Early Career Academic Research Grant for Women

We are very pleased to announce that Tamaki Mihic is the 2018 recipient of the Capstone Editing Early Career Academic Research Grant for Women.

Tamaki is an Academic Fellow and an Associate Lecturer at the Department of Japanese Studies, in the School of Languages and Cultures, University of Sydney.

Tamaki will use her award to cover the publication costs for her monograph Re-imagining Japan after Fukushima, which is to be published soon by the prestigious ANU Press.

Tamaki’s book is absolutely fascinating, and we can’t wait until it is published! (We’ll update you on the blog so you can purchase a copy if you’d like.)

The manuscript will reveal how Japan was portrayed in both domestic and foreign cultural productions (e.g. literature, film and manga) in response to the 2011 triple disaster in Japan. The book is a valuable contribution to the growing academic literature surrounding the unprecedented triple disaster. It will be the first to examine the relationship between the 3.11 disaster and perceptions of Japan. While many scholars have studied the disaster from a more scientific point of view, very few have studied how the disaster has been portrayed in cultural productions.

Tamaki is an outstanding early career researcher. She completed her PhD at University of Sydney in 2016. During her PhD, she received the Inoue Yasushi Award for Outstanding Research in Japanese Literature, Australian Postgraduate Award, and ANU Japanese Studies Graduate Workshop Scholarship from Japan Foundation, Sydney. This opportunity from Capstone Editing will not only help to increase Tamaki’s publication record, but will also assist her in her promotion and application and obtaining future independent research funding.

Outline of Re-imagining Japan after Fukushima

The impact of the 2011 TÅ hoku earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan on the 11th of March (3.11) extended far beyond the physical damage produced, prompting a myriad of political and cultural responses worldwide. The Japanese government and authorities, as well as mainstream international media, focused on a narrative of a disciplined, resilient and composed nation, with a vibrant community spirit, united in the face of the disaster.

However, it is also true that the disaster sparked widespread public interest in the negative aspects of Japanese society. Left-wing activists and social commentators blamed the government as well as post-war Japanese systems and values for the human-made aspect of the disaster, namely the unresolved situation at the nuclear power plants in Fukushima.

Spurred by the heightened emotions following the triple disaster, Japanese society became increasingly polarised between these two views of how to represent itself. How has literature and popular culture responded to this conflict? This monograph examines this issue through an analysis of representations of Japan in post-3.11 fiction. Texts are selected from the Japanese, English and French languages, and the images are also compared with images of Japanese identity from official government discourse and social commentators, in order to reveal how authors have been creatively adding new elements to the debate and providing alternative visions for Japan's future, in a way that was not achieved by non-fiction media.

This book argues that cultural responses to 3.11 have a significant role to play in mediating between radical views and creating new images for post-3.11 Japan.

Photo by: The Japanese Foundation

Capstone Editing

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Winner of the 2018 Capstone Editing Early Career Academic Research Grant for Women