Established in 1974, the Journal of Japanese Studies features original, analytically rigorous articles from across the humanities and social sciences, including comparative and transnational scholarship in which Japan plays a major part

Jasny 50:1


The Novelty of Nature: Kojima Usui and Hierarchies of Genre in Modern Japanese Literature

Kojima Usui’s (1873–1948) efforts to craft a Japanese mountain literature (sangaku bungaku) present a fascinating case study of the Meiji-period (1868–1912) creation of a national literature that could address the issues faced by individuals in modernizing Japan.  Navigating a complex web of nascent modern genres and writing styles, Japan’s literary tradition, and international mountain literature, Usui deployed kikōbun (travel writing) to both align himself with and differentiate himself from existing traditions and trends.  Usui’s idiosyncratic negotiation of traditional and modern provides a fresh look at the intricate innovations that took place in Meiji Japan.

Volume 50, Number 1 (Winter 2024)
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