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Teaching Classical Japanese: A Practitioner’s Workshop, III

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June 8, 2024
9:30AM - 5:30PM
Hagerty 180/Zoom

Date Range
Add to Calendar 2024-06-08 09:30:00 2024-06-08 17:30:00 Teaching Classical Japanese: A Practitioner’s Workshop, III The East Asian Studies Center and Department of East Asian Languages and Literatures present:Teaching Classical Japanese: A Practitioner’s Workshop, IIIIn order to confirm your lunch order and/or parking pass if desired, please register no later than 5/28. 9:30 am Coffee and Light Breakfast10:00-10:15 Welcome Greetings· Mark Bender, chair, Dept. of East Asian Languages and Literatures, The Ohio State University· Workshop Organizers: John Bundschuh, Naomi Fukumori, and Shelley Quinn10:15-10:45 Presentation 1: Naomi Fukumori, The Ohio State University, “Variations on the Theme of ‘Haru wa akebono’”10:45-11:15 Presentation 2: J. Christopher Kern, Auburn University, “Pedagogical Editions of Classical Japanese Texts”11:15-11:45 Presentation 3: Paul Warnick, Brigham Young University, “The Pioneering Edo Analysis of Japanese Suffixes”11:45am-1 pm Lunch1-1:30 Presentation 4: John Bundschuh, Swarthmore College, “Reflections on Classical Japanese Learning in a Literature Survey Course”1:30-2:00 Presentation 5: Lindsey Stirek, University of Illinois Urbana Champaign, “Bridging Worlds: Experiential Learning in Classical Japanese Aesthetics”2:00-2:30 Presentation 6: Paula R. Curtis, UCLA, “Digital Approaches to Classical Japanese Studies”2:30-3:00 Presentation 7: Charo D’Etcheverry, University of Wisconsin-Madison, “Seeding Bungo Across and Outside the Department”3:00-3:30 Coffee Break3:30-5:30pm Discussion about the Classical Japanese Portal and other projects/collaborationsABSTRACTS (listed alphabetically by presenters’ last names) John Bundschuh, Swarthmore College, “Reflections on Classical Japanese Learning in a Literature Survey Course”In the fall of 2022 I taught a course I developed called Classical Japanese Literature and Language Change. The course served as an introduction to Japanese literature from the Nara through Kamakura periods, aspects of bungo and language change, and how classical texts are interpreted and translated—both into English and Modern Japanese. Students prepared for each three-hour weekly meeting by reading selections from Traditional Japanese Literature: An Anthology, Beginnings to 1600 with optional modern and classical Japanese renditions provided for more advanced students, including selections from the Classical Japanese Portal and Classical Japanese Reader and Essential Dictionary.In this talk I will discuss how Classical Japanese was introduced in the course and how I plan to alter the class format for when I teach it again in the spring of 2024 to bring more focus to the Classical Japanese source texts and the grammatical structures students need to understand to access them. Paula Curtis, UCLA, “Digital Approaches to Classical Japanese Studies”This talk will provide an overview of digital resources for Japanese Studies specialists with a focus on materials relevant to classical Japanese. Scholars have and are taking diverse approaches to the analysis and presentation of premodern research materials through digital methods, with many questions remaining on the most effective means to leverage online formats for accessibility as well as language education. This introduction aims to share recent tools and trends while opening a space for dialogue about the potential pitfalls and possibilities for bungo research and teaching in a future deeply intertwined with digital technologies. Charo D’Etcheverry, University of Wisconsin-Madison, “Classical Japanese on the Road: Seeding Bungo Across and Outside the Department”How do we get new students interested in old things? Like other members of our group, I’ve worked hard to incorporate student needs and desires into my syllabi, and not just in order to get enrollments (although this is critical, of course). I want our students to be excited about classical Japanese as both a language and a field of literary (and cultural) studies, which means tapping into their own passion projects.In this presentation, I’ll review my successes (and failures) blending bungo with cooking, computer science, dorm decorating, and mindfulness practices—both in a range of courses within departments of language and literature/culture as well as in offerings that meet further afield (and even literally in the forest). By doing this, I hope to share what my students have taught me about sparking their interest and keeping that flame lit, so that I can keep teaching bungo—and keep learning from their own engagements with it after the formal course ends. Naomi Fukumori, The Ohio State University “Variations on the Theme of ‘Haru wa akebono’”While teaching the basics of classical Japanese grammar lies at the heart of any introductory bungo course, incorporating supplementary lessons on aspects of textual scholarship and manuscript studies can open up valuable discussions on fungibility within premodern literary texts and the active engagement of readers in the transmission of premodern literary works. Variant manuscripts can tell interesting stories about a work’s reception, and the four main variant manuscript lines of Sei Shōnagon’s Makura no sōshi—the Sanganbon, Nōinbon, Maedakebon, and the Sakaibon—with their notable structural differences, their significant content and grammatical variation, and the modularity of Makura no sōshi’s passages can serve collectively as a useful case study. Specifically, my presentation will examine the most frequently quoted passage of Makura no sōshi, the “Haru wa akenobo” passage, across the four manuscript lines to highlight unique aspects—grammatically and in content— of each of the variants. J. Christopher Kern, Auburn University, “Pedagogical editions of Classical Japanese texts”Currently there are very few sources that present classical Japanese texts with English notes and commentary. Haruo Shirane’s reader is really the only choice. This contrasts with what is available for classical Chinese, and even more starkly with the mountains of such material available for Greek and Latin. The general strategy seems to be to get students using Japanese commentaries and editions as quickly as possible.However, many students are beginning their study of classical Japanese with a still shaky grasp on modern Japanese, and the transition to Japanese editions can be jarring. The modern translations provided are often written in a style that is difficult to understand, and the notes are frequently concise and assume a level of knowledge above that of the foreign beginner. While these difficulties can be ameliorated by ateacher or advisor, not everyone has that resource. Furthermore, the Japanese editions can be difficult to acquire for students who are not at a large university with a well-funded East Asian library – a problem that also confronts the many self-studiers of Japanese who are not taking Japanese courses at a college at all.The purpose of this presentation is to encourage the creation of works that can serve as a bridge from a basic classical Japanese course to the Japanese editions. I will show examples of such works for the Kokin wakashu and the Genji monogatari – although I will present them in book (or e-book) format, they could also be adapted to a web-based model. Lindsey Stirek, University of Illinois Urbana Champaign, “Bridging Worlds: Experiential Learning in Classical Japanese Aesthetics”In our increasingly digitized world, and particularly outside of Japan, engagement with classical Japanese language, literature and arts is often achieved through textbooks and screens. While these are excellent, accessible means by which to reach a wide audience, students have increasingly voiced a need for immersive, connective classroom experiences. In this presentation, I offer an approach to introducing classical Japanese aesthetics and vocabulary through art-creation activities which I developed for a survey course on Japanese aesthetics.Through a combination of experiential learning and classroom discussion, students in this class are invited to become active participants in the creative and meaning-making process. They directly engage with traditional arts such as calligraphy, ikebana and chanoyu, while facilitated discussions provide context within the broader framework of classical and medieval aesthetic concepts such as yūgen, miyabi,and mono no aware. This synthesis of practice and theory encourages students to examine the multifaceted nature of Japanese aesthetics and the evolution of aesthetic sensibilities over time. Additionally, the incorporation of artists' statement assignments and peer critique sessions fosters critical thinking and self-reflection, empowering students to articulate their own interpretations of and insights into Japanese aesthetics and strengthening their connection to the concepts.By presenting this course as a case study, I aim to demonstrate a novel approach to teaching classical Japanese aesthetics. This method draws upon experiential learning methodologies to deepen student engagement and provide a bridge between academic discourse surrounding classical aesthetics and embodied understanding of them. Paul Warnick, Brigham Young University, “The Pioneering Edo Analysis of Japanese Suffixes”Fujitani Nariakira was a groundbreaking scholar of Edo Japan who was the first to systematically analyze the Japanese language, including the conjugation system. Ayuishoo, one of his primary works, includes an analysis of over 200 elements of the language. For each, he included waka poetry to exemplify the appropriate usage of the given element, citing over 600 poems from over 40 anthologies and other sources.  In Ayuishoo, he distinguishes between elements that affix to nouns and do not conjugate (particles), and those that affix to conjugating words. The latter group is further divided into elements that conjugate (bound auxiliaries) and those that do not (suffixes).  His category of suffixes (setsubigo) includes eight items, some with multiple variants and uses. This paper provides an overview of Nariakira’s pioneering contributions and focuses on an examination of his analysis of suffixes, with a discussion of their Edo equivalents and the waka poetry he cited to demonstrate how each is appropriately used.  His analysis is a careful look at language in context and opens a window on the Japanese language used in Kyoto in the mid-Edo period.  This examination of his work also sheds light on language changes from the Edo period to today.  Nariakira’s work set the stage for other prominent linguists and has relevance for our modern understanding of language, linguistics, and literature, and it can inform our pedagogy related to premodern Japanese. Hagerty 180/Zoom East Asian Studies Center easc@osu.edu America/New_York public

The East Asian Studies Center and Department of East Asian Languages and Literatures present:

Teaching Classical Japanese: A Practitioner’s Workshop, III

In order to confirm your lunch order and/or parking pass if desired, please register no later than 5/28. 


9:30 am Coffee and Light Breakfast

10:00-10:15 Welcome Greetings

· Mark Bender, chair, Dept. of East Asian Languages and Literatures, The Ohio State University

· Workshop Organizers: John Bundschuh, Naomi Fukumori, and Shelley Quinn

10:15-10:45 Presentation 1: Naomi Fukumori, The Ohio State University, “Variations on the Theme of ‘Haru wa akebono’”

10:45-11:15 Presentation 2: J. Christopher Kern, Auburn University, “Pedagogical Editions of Classical Japanese Texts”

11:15-11:45 Presentation 3: Paul Warnick, Brigham Young University, “The Pioneering Edo Analysis of Japanese Suffixes”

11:45am-1 pm Lunch

1-1:30 Presentation 4: John Bundschuh, Swarthmore College, “Reflections on Classical Japanese Learning in a Literature Survey Course”

1:30-2:00 Presentation 5: Lindsey Stirek, University of Illinois Urbana Champaign, “Bridging Worlds: Experiential Learning in Classical Japanese Aesthetics”

2:00-2:30 Presentation 6: Paula R. Curtis, UCLA, “Digital Approaches to Classical Japanese Studies”

2:30-3:00 Presentation 7: Charo D’Etcheverry, University of Wisconsin-Madison, “Seeding Bungo Across and Outside the Department”

3:00-3:30 Coffee Break

3:30-5:30pm Discussion about the Classical Japanese Portal and other projects/collaborations


ABSTRACTS 
(listed alphabetically by presenters’ last names)

 

John Bundschuh, Swarthmore College, “Reflections on Classical Japanese Learning in a Literature Survey Course”

In the fall of 2022 I taught a course I developed called Classical Japanese Literature and Language Change. The course served as an introduction to Japanese literature from the Nara through Kamakura periods, aspects of bungo and language change, and how classical texts are interpreted and translated—both into English and Modern Japanese. Students prepared for each three-hour weekly meeting by reading selections from Traditional Japanese Literature: An Anthology, Beginnings to 1600 with optional modern and classical Japanese renditions provided for more advanced students, including selections from the Classical Japanese Portal and Classical Japanese Reader and Essential Dictionary.

In this talk I will discuss how Classical Japanese was introduced in the course and how I plan to alter the class format for when I teach it again in the spring of 2024 to bring more focus to the Classical Japanese source texts and the grammatical structures students need to understand to access them.

 

Paula Curtis, UCLA, “Digital Approaches to Classical Japanese Studies”

This talk will provide an overview of digital resources for Japanese Studies specialists with a focus on materials relevant to classical Japanese. Scholars have and are taking diverse approaches to the analysis and presentation of premodern research materials through digital methods, with many questions remaining on the most effective means to leverage online formats for accessibility as well as language education. This introduction aims to share recent tools and trends while opening a space for dialogue about the potential pitfalls and possibilities for bungo research and teaching in a future deeply intertwined with digital technologies.

 

Charo D’Etcheverry, University of Wisconsin-Madison, “Classical Japanese on the Road: Seeding Bungo Across and Outside the Department”

How do we get new students interested in old things? Like other members of our group, I’ve worked hard to incorporate student needs and desires into my syllabi, and not just in order to get enrollments (although this is critical, of course). I want our students to be excited about classical Japanese as both a language and a field of literary (and cultural) studies, which means tapping into their own passion projects.

In this presentation, I’ll review my successes (and failures) blending bungo with cooking, computer science, dorm decorating, and mindfulness practices—both in a range of courses within departments of language and literature/culture as well as in offerings that meet further afield (and even literally in the forest). By doing this, I hope to share what my students have taught me about sparking their interest and keeping that flame lit, so that I can keep teaching bungo—and keep learning from their own engagements with it after the formal course ends.

 

Naomi Fukumori, The Ohio State University “Variations on the Theme of ‘Haru wa akebono’”

While teaching the basics of classical Japanese grammar lies at the heart of any introductory bungo course, incorporating supplementary lessons on aspects of textual scholarship and manuscript studies can open up valuable discussions on fungibility within premodern literary texts and the active engagement of readers in the transmission of premodern literary works. Variant manuscripts can tell interesting stories about a work’s reception, and the four main variant manuscript lines of Sei Shōnagon’s Makura no sōshi—the Sanganbon, Nōinbon, Maedakebon, and the Sakaibon—with their notable structural differences, their significant content and grammatical variation, and the modularity of Makura no sōshi’s passages can serve collectively as a useful case study. Specifically, my presentation will examine the most frequently quoted passage of Makura no sōshi, the “Haru wa akenobo” passage, across the four manuscript lines to highlight unique aspects—grammatically and in content— of each of the variants.

 

J. Christopher Kern, Auburn University, “Pedagogical editions of Classical Japanese texts”

Currently there are very few sources that present classical Japanese texts with English notes and commentary. Haruo Shirane’s reader is really the only choice. This contrasts with what is available for classical Chinese, and even more starkly with the mountains of such material available for Greek and Latin. The general strategy seems to be to get students using Japanese commentaries and editions as quickly as possible.

However, many students are beginning their study of classical Japanese with a still shaky grasp on modern Japanese, and the transition to Japanese editions can be jarring. The modern translations provided are often written in a style that is difficult to understand, and the notes are frequently concise and assume a level of knowledge above that of the foreign beginner. While these difficulties can be ameliorated by a

teacher or advisor, not everyone has that resource. Furthermore, the Japanese editions can be difficult to acquire for students who are not at a large university with a well-funded East Asian library – a problem that also confronts the many self-studiers of Japanese who are not taking Japanese courses at a college at all.

The purpose of this presentation is to encourage the creation of works that can serve as a bridge from a basic classical Japanese course to the Japanese editions. I will show examples of such works for the Kokin wakashu and the Genji monogatari – although I will present them in book (or e-book) format, they could also be adapted to a web-based model.

 

Lindsey Stirek, University of Illinois Urbana Champaign, “Bridging Worlds: Experiential Learning in Classical Japanese Aesthetics”

In our increasingly digitized world, and particularly outside of Japan, engagement with classical Japanese language, literature and arts is often achieved through textbooks and screens. While these are excellent, accessible means by which to reach a wide audience, students have increasingly voiced a need for immersive, connective classroom experiences. In this presentation, I offer an approach to introducing classical Japanese aesthetics and vocabulary through art-creation activities which I developed for a survey course on Japanese aesthetics.

Through a combination of experiential learning and classroom discussion, students in this class are invited to become active participants in the creative and meaning-making process. They directly engage with traditional arts such as calligraphy, ikebana and chanoyu, while facilitated discussions provide context within the broader framework of classical and medieval aesthetic concepts such as yūgen, miyabi,and mono no aware. This synthesis of practice and theory encourages students to examine the multifaceted nature of Japanese aesthetics and the evolution of aesthetic sensibilities over time. Additionally, the incorporation of artists' statement assignments and peer critique sessions fosters critical thinking and self-reflection, empowering students to articulate their own interpretations of and insights into Japanese aesthetics and strengthening their connection to the concepts.

By presenting this course as a case study, I aim to demonstrate a novel approach to teaching classical Japanese aesthetics. This method draws upon experiential learning methodologies to deepen student engagement and provide a bridge between academic discourse surrounding classical aesthetics and embodied understanding of them.

 

Paul Warnick, Brigham Young University, “The Pioneering Edo Analysis of Japanese Suffixes”

Fujitani Nariakira was a groundbreaking scholar of Edo Japan who was the first to systematically analyze the Japanese language, including the conjugation system. Ayuishoo, one of his primary works, includes an analysis of over 200 elements of the language. For each, he included waka poetry to exemplify the appropriate usage of the given element, citing over 600 poems from over 40 anthologies and other sources.  In Ayuishoo, he distinguishes between elements that affix to nouns and do not conjugate (particles), and those that affix to conjugating words. The latter group is further divided into elements that conjugate (bound auxiliaries) and those that do not (suffixes).  His category of suffixes (setsubigo) includes eight items, some with multiple variants and uses. This paper provides an overview of Nariakira’s pioneering contributions and focuses on an examination of his analysis of suffixes, with a discussion of their Edo equivalents and the waka poetry he cited to demonstrate how each is appropriately used.  His analysis is a careful look at language in context and opens a window on the Japanese language used in Kyoto in the mid-Edo period.  This examination of his work also sheds light on language changes from the Edo period to today.  Nariakira’s work set the stage for other prominent linguists and has relevance for our modern understanding of language, linguistics, and literature, and it can inform our pedagogy related to premodern Japanese.

 

If you require an accommodation, such as live captioning, to participate in this event, please contact EASC at easc@osu.edu. Requests made at least two weeks in advance of the event will generally allow us to provide seamless access, but the university will make every effort to meet requests made after this date. 

This event is supported by a U.S. Department of Education Title VI grant to The Ohio State University East Asian Studies Center.