Supernatural characters: defining identities through Japanese narratives

Activity: Talk or presentationInvited talk


What does the supernatural represent in Japan? Why do we still have mythical ‘others’ in a period dominated by advanced technology? Japanese popular culture in the Heisei period (1989-2019) is characterised by colourful, diverse forms of supernatural protagonists, much like the other yōkai -ridden periods Heian (794-1185) and Edo (1603-1868). The prevalence of, and interest in the supernatural may suggest a specific psyche and social ecology in these periods. Focussing on issues of precarious Japanese identities, I discuss the characterisation and transition of the supernatural from the Heian to Heisei using novels, manga and anime, such as the Tale of Genji and Inuyasha.
Period23 Nov 2019
Event titlePhenomenal beings: spirits in Japanese art and culture: Lecture series in association with Japan supernatural
Event typeSeminar
SponsorJapan Foundation
LocationSydney, Australia, New South Wales
Degree of RecognitionNational