Center for Japanese Studies seminar

August 30, 12:00pm - 1:30pm
Mānoa Campus, Hybrid format - see description below Add to Calendar

“Contending with the Modern West: Japanese and Yiddish Satires in the Era of High Imperialism,” by Dr. David Gordon, Professor of Asian History at Shepherd University. Seminar co-sponsored with UHM Dept. of History. Description: In the later 19th c., many Japanese and East European Jews, respectively, perceived their polities to be under threat from Western governments, even as some also found hope in humanitarian idealism. To understand this mixed atmosphere, this talk will examine two satirical works: Japanese democratic activist Nakae Chomin's A Discourse by Three Drunkards on Government (1887) and classic Yiddish novelist Sholem Abramovitch's The Mare (1873). Each story features an idealist figure--in some measure, the author's younger self--who is assailed by a realist and a cynic, respectively, for his naivete. Reflecting contrastive trajectories, the Japanese novel inclines to comedy, while the Yiddish one inclines to tragedy. This will be a hybrid presentation. For location and webinar registration, see our flyer at:

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Center for Japanese Studies, Mānoa Campus

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