SFU English 380: Mutilation and Foreign Relations in the Japanese Novel

A class blog for students of English 380 - "Literature in Translation" - at Simon Fraser University in Autumn 2005.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Individual Presentations

Your individual presentation assignment is deliver a five-minute presentation based on research into a specific aspect of the Japanese civilisation that interests you and which may illuminate our reading of the course texts. Your final cause is the improvement of our understanding and the increase in our appreciation of the civilisation that produced the literature we are studying. After the presentation you will hand in your research notes to the instructor for consideration in the grading of the assignment.

Update: please feel free to use any types of aid, media or format that you prefer. The only criterion in this regard is effectiveness.
Update 2: again, the specific format of your presentation is for you to decide. If I might offer a recommendation, one effective method would be to use the last minute of your presentation to state your opinion on the connection of your chosen topic to the literature of our period.
Update 3: the five minute time limit will be strictly enforced - from both sides. This is a discipline that will prove effective in many future practical applications.
Update 4: another recommendation is that you use the opportunity to develop your oral presentation skills. Design and incorporate techniques which give your presentation its greatest effectiveness. As always, of course, I am available for consultation ...

The choice of topic is entirely up to you: your only criterion in addition to that of relevancy as stated above is that you find it intriguing.

  1. Select your topic from these given below, or chose your own.
  2. Enter your choice in the comments section of this post.
  • ikebana (flower arrangement)
  • Mito Komon: a Japanese hero
  • tea ceremony
  • Japanese gardens
  • sushi & sake
  • marriage in Japan: then & now
  • karoshi (death by overwork)
  • sumo
  • Rape of Nanking
  • geisha: the flower & willow world
  • the Edo period
  • The Heian Age
  • genji monogatari
  • teen suicides
  • hierarchy in Japan
  • seppuku
  • kanji & calligraphy
  • politics - the Jiminto
  • the ultra-right & ultra-left in Japan
  • racial purity policies
  • caste system: the buraku
  • Japanese World War II militarism
  • anime
  • manga
  • Kyoto
  • Hiroshima & Nagasaki
  • Ameterasu: Japan's creation myth
  • hanami: cherry blossom season
  • colour symbolism in Japan
  • Momotaro & Omusub Kororin: Japanese folk tales
  • [To be Continued]


At 10:28 PM, Blogger Tina said...

i would like to present on geisha.



At 11:22 PM, Blogger Tina said...

(now that i have your attention...)

i'm one of quieter students in class who prefers to listen to others' opinions rather than speak my own, but i just HAD to share this with you all...

while brainstorming presentation topics, i was googling a bunch of japanese terms to find out what they meant, and one of the ones i searched was "URABON". in the novel silence, the urabon festival is mentioned in chapter 7 (perhaps in other chapters as well) and thinking i would find stuff on this budhist festival that rodrigues compares to halloween, i was absolutely shocked to find a whole bunch of porn ads as a result!! only after typing in "what is urabon" i found a couple definitions pertaining to the festival, otherwise there was just more porn. because i was too afraid of what i might come across if i continued my seach, i then closed my browser.

so...my question is, why did this happen?! does the festival have anything to do with porn or sex? or does the word have 2 different meanings..or am i completely missing something here..??

and finally, since i'm not presenting on this topic, maybe i have entrigued one of you to!!

happy hunting. =)

At 11:39 PM, Blogger Joycelyn said...

Hi everyone,

I am going to present on "Marriage in Japan: Then and Now".

At 1:33 AM, Blogger Esther said...

Hi, this topic might have been overdone by the media and Gwen Stefani...however, i'd like to look into the Harajuku district, Japanese teens and their fashion (harajuku girls) etc etc.

At 11:43 AM, Blogger baby_c said...

I would like to do Japanese World War II militarism

At 11:45 AM, Blogger Karen said...

I'm going to pick manga really quickly before anyone steals it.

At 11:52 AM, Blogger sandeep_manhas said...

I am not sure as how I want t o present the topic but I would like to look at and analyze martial arts in the japanese culture.


At 12:08 PM, Blogger Erin said...

I am going to do my presentation on colour symbols in Japan.

At 1:28 PM, Blogger orla said...

I am going to do my presentation on Hanami, the cherry blossom season.

At 9:20 PM, Blogger Ray said...

i emailed prof o about another topic, but i'll take karoshi for now. if anyone's interested in karoshi for SURE, i'm more than willing to give it up.

for anyone interested in teen suicide, rent "suicide club" from rogers. be warned: it's a little disturbing, but interesting

At 10:25 PM, Blogger Howard makes nice said...

i'm thinking i want to present on either anime or seppuku. if anyone is interested in either of these, pick it and i'll pick the other, thanks!

At 11:54 PM, Blogger janice said...

i think i wanna do teen suicide/seppuku or anime - howard it's ur call,but gosh darn it way to pick everything i'm interested in =p

At 4:13 PM, Blogger Amanda said...

I do believe I shall reserve the tea ceremony topic for myself. I think I have a sake set hanging around my house somewhere...

At 3:49 PM, Blogger BARB said...

Well, since topics are flying off and I present in four days I guess I should pick something. I will choose, but not commit, to politics. If I don't like what I find, I'll be back for another topic.

At 7:07 PM, Blogger Steph said...

Hi, I'd like to present on racial purity policies please and thank you. If anyone is just dying to do this and has a problem please let me know. Thank you!

At 10:23 AM, Blogger Louise28 said...


I will give ikebana a try.

At 3:12 PM, Blogger nicole said...

I'd like to tackle sushi and sake.

At 8:01 PM, Blogger Bonnie said...

I'd like to present on Japanese Gardens if no one else wants it.

At 9:32 PM, Blogger Lindsay said...

I would like to present on marriage in Japan; however, if I can't find too much info., or if something else sparks my interest, i may switch. :) If anyone else wants this topic, let me know.

At 9:54 PM, Blogger Lindsay said...

Nevermind, i must have missed Jocelyn's post... oops :)

At 1:39 PM, Blogger Deep said...

I think that I will concentrate on Aikido but am not quite sure on how I will do a presentation on the topic. As for literature I was hoping to use Angry White Pajamas but I will have to at the topic in much more depth.

At 2:31 PM, Blogger Steph said...

Okay, I think I'd like to change my mind and present on Japan's creation myth...so that means racial purity politics is up for grabs...but if this sucks I might be back for it...

At 5:00 PM, Blogger janice said...

ok just to clarify on my choice, i've decided to present on teen suicide - thx!

At 12:51 PM, Blogger Dr. S.A. Ogden said...

Dear Steph:

I don't think it will suck: especially if you make a connection to the Japanese attitude of nationalism & Emperor worship -- such as Mishima acted from, for instance....

At 11:07 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

okay, i will choose "Kanji and Calligraphy". However, I am in the habit of being indecisive so I might change...I am willing to switch if someone really likes this topic but I will choose it for now. Thank u


At 8:56 PM, Blogger Lindsay said...

I think I am going to present on racial purity politics, since Steph. isn't doing it anymore... for now ;) Let me know if you still want it. Thanks! And I may switch if something else sparks my interest; i tend to be indecisive (scratch that; I AM indecisive!).

At 2:22 PM, Anonymous Danielle said...

Hey guys, I'm super late in choosing a topic, but it seems that there are quite a number left, so, I'm choosing Sumo! Yay, should be fun!

At 5:37 PM, Blogger gabe said...

this is also a tad late (apologies) but i will like to present on Left and Right Extremism in Japan.

At 2:11 PM, Blogger Kristina said...

I will do Hiroshima and Nagasaki

At 1:12 AM, Blogger Amy said...

I can't remember if anyone has done hierarchy in Japan yet, but if not I'd like that topic

At 2:46 PM, Blogger Dr. S.A. Ogden said...

Dear Amy & Kristina:

Noted - take it away ....



Post a Comment

<< Home