Ghosts and Demons in Japan (JPN4403.01)

Huang-wen Lai

This course explores the supernatural world and its inhabitants as imagined in Japanese literature and visual culture from ancient times to the present day. Our survey will take in a wide variety of fantastic phenomena, including spirit possession and exorcism in Japanese literature, the “hungry ghosts” of medieval Buddhist folklore, interwar Gothic tales of the bizarre, monsters and spirits in manga and animation, and recent Japanese horror films such as The Ring. In the process, we will consider the various roles that the supernatural has played in Japanese culture at various historical moments.

Learning Outcomes:

Delivery Method: Entirely remote (synchronous)
Prerequisites:Permission of instructor. Email Ikuko Yoshida ( for permission.
Course Level: 4000-level
Credits: 4
T/F 4:10PM - 6:00PM (Full-term)
Maximum Enrollment: 10
Course Frequency: One time only

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