UW Japan Studies Newsletters

Autumn 2014 Newsletter

New Endowed Scholarship for Japan Studies

Yuko Kasai (’99) and David Buerge (’00) during their visit to Seattle in summer 2014 when they met with Professor Kenneth B. Pyle regarding the scholarship endowment. (Photo courtesy of Yuko Kasai.)

The UW Japan Studies Program and the Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies are excited to announce the establishment in summer 2014 of the Kasai-Buerge Endowed Fund for Student Support in Japan Studies.

Yuko Kasai (’99) and David Buerge (’00) met in Professor Kenneth Pyle’s class on postwar Japanese history during spring quarter 1997. David earned double degrees from UW in economics and Japan studies, and Yuko majored in business. Having worked his way through college as an undergraduate, David always remembered the difficulty of keeping up his grades while working.

More than a decade later and an ocean away in a Tokyo bookstore, David came across a new book by Walter Hatch (UW PhD 2000), who had been the teaching assistant for Professor Kozo Yamamura when he and Yuko were undergrads. He recalled the impact of Yamamura’s teaching on his life and career and wanted to give back to the program. Shortly after, he and Yuko attended a UW Alumni Association reception with UW President Michael Young at the Tokyo residence of Ambassador John V. Roos. They were inspired by President Young’s remarks and resolved to establish a fund to support students so that they might have more time to focus on studying rather than holding a job.

Scholarships from the endowment will be available beginning in 2019 when the endowment matures and funds become fully available. The scholarships will provide broad-based direct financial support to students studying Japan or Japan-related topics at the University of Washington.

The program extends it sincerest thanks to Yuko and David for their ongoing generosity to Japan Studies students for years to come.

For more information on contributing to this or other endowments in support of the UW Japan Studies Program, please see the UW Giving page at www.washington.edu/giving/ or contact Ellen Eskenazi at japan@uw.edu for information.

From the Chair

After many years as chair of the UW Japan Studies Program, Professor Marie Anchordoguy stepped down at the start of the 2014–15 academic year. All of us in the program extend our heartfelt thanks to Marie for her service. In addition to managing the business of the program, Marie also served as coeditor of the Journal of Japanese Studies while teaching a full array of courses. It is a record of extraordinary service to the program and to Japanese studies more broadly and we are indebted to her.

Incidentally, I want to call attention to the fact that the Journal, which is marking its fortieth year of publication, was founded at the UW and has been located here ever since. Martha Walsh, the managing editor, has been with the Journal almost from the start and has been indispensable to its success as the flagship of the field.

While a successor to Marie as head of the program is being chosen, I am briefly serving as interim chair. Even in this time of transition, many events and activities are planned for the year ahead.

The Mitsubishi Corporation has generously continued its support for the Mitsubishi Lecture Series on campus, and announcements will follow as speakers and dates are confirmed. Among this year’s speakers will be the Honorable Taro Kono, a leading member of the Diet, who will discuss the energy challenges facing Japan following the Fukushima disasters.

The program has been fortunate in the many alumni who have established fellowships and other support. The most recent are Yuko Kasai (’99) and David Buerge (’00) whose endowment gift is discussed elsewhere in this newsletter.

We are especially pleased to welcome back Professor Daniel Foote to the program faculty in his new position as professor of law and codirector of the Asian Law Center in the Law School. Since leaving UW in 2000, he has held an appointment on the law faculty of the University of Tokyo. Now he will have a joint appointment between UW and the University of Tokyo. His class on Japanese Law will be open to students from across campus. Professor Foote delivered the annual Griffith and Patricia Way Lecture on December 3.

A full schedule of other UW Japan events for 2014–15 has begun with one of its highlights. In a special lecture on October 13, Professor Don Hellmann spoke on “The World in Transition: Asia and the Twilight of America’s Century.” Many more program events are listed on our website.

In sum, we are off to another year of outstanding activities.

Mitsubishi Corporation Lecture Series 

Left to right: Shinichiro Kawazoe, vice president of Mitsubishi Corporation Americas, the Honorable Consul General Masahiro Omura, and Professor Carol Gluck, Columbia University, at a pre-lecture reception on April 21, 2014.

The Japan Studies Program is pleased to continue the Mitsubishi Corporation Lecture Series for a second year. The series, which allows UW to host prominent speakers about Japan, has been made possible by generous gifts from Mitsubishi Corporation in 2013 and again for 2014.

Last year’s speakers gave accounts of current events through the lenses of economics, political science, and history. Motoshige Itoh, a professor at the Graduate School of Economics, University of Tokyo, and president of the National Institute for Research Advancement (NIRA), discussed the impact of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s economic policies. Professor Shinichi Kitaoka of the National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies gave a presentation titled “East Asia Security Challenges and Japan’s New Strategy under Abe” with insights into recent tensions between Japan and China and answers to questions about the movement to reinterpret Article 9 of Japan’s constitution. Professor Carol Gluck of Columbia University addressed Japan’s place through the context of modern global history in a talk titled “Modernity in Common: Japan and World History.”

In 2015, the Mitsubishi Corporation Lecture Series will begin on January 26 with a talk titled “Japan’s Energy Challenges after Fukushima” by the Honorable Taro Kono, a member of Japan’s House of Representatives since 1996. Additional speakers and dates will be announced on the Japan Studies Program events web page. Lectures will be free and open to the public.

The Mitsubishi Corporation has funded similar projects annually for several years in support of their corporate goal of helping to develop a more global society. This year Mitsubishi Corporation is supporting 52 projects in a total of 40 countries, with just two of those in the U.S. – including the UW Japan Studies Program and Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs.


Marie Anchordoguy, professor, Jackson School, continued to coedit the Journal of Japanese Studies and chaired the Japan Studies Program through September 2014. At the Association for Asian Studies annual meeting in Philadelphia in March 2014, she was invited to talk on a panel, “Reviewing Books in a Changing Environment,” as a representative of the Journal of Japanese Studies. She was selected to join an EU-sponsored Economic Development Program to visit rural areas in Italy in July 2014, and was invited to present a paper, “The Political Economy of Entrepreneurship, Venture Capital, and Start-ups in Japan since 2000: Social Norms, and Institutional and Policy Change,” at the European Association for Japanese Studies meeting at Ljubljana University in Slovenia in August 2014.

Paul Atkins, associate professor, Asian Languages and Literature, was recently appointed to the advisory board of Japan Arts Connection Lab. He has recently published “The Word Monosugoshi and Changing Perceptions of Nature in Medieval Japan,” Japanese Language and Literature (October 2013), and the article “The Nō Play Shigehira” as well as an annotated translation with introduction of the play “Shigehira,” in Oyler and Watson, eds., Like Clouds or Mists: Studies and Translations of Nō of the Genpei War (Cornell East Asia Program, 2013). In March 2014 he gave talks at a symposium on Fujiwara no Teika at Japan’s Women University in Tokyo and at a workshop on Poetic Teachings in Premodern Japan at Stanford University.

Davinder Bhowmik, associate professor, Asian Languages and Literature, presented her work “Narrative Adaptations of the Myth of the Child Devouring Goddess Kishimojin” at the Association for Japanese Literary Studies (October 2013) and participated in a roundtable on the scholarship of Professor John Whittier at the Association for Asian Studies (March 2014). Her essay “Hayashi Kyoko’s Place in the Representation of Nuclear Power and Weapons” is included in her coedited volume Islands of Resistance: Japanese literature from Okinawa (University of Hawai‘i Press, 2015). She was also invited to give a lecture at Furman University titled “Colonial Violence in the Fiction of Medoruma Shun” (February 2014).

Don Hellmann, professor, Jackson School, cotaught a new course in spring quarter 2014, Integrated Science and Policy in the Arctic, which highlighted the Acrtic as an emerging global region and actor on the world stage. His summer trip to the Arctic in Norway was for research on the role of Japan and other Asian nations in Arctic governance.

 Justin Jesty, assistant professor, Asian Languages and Literature, published his essay “The Realism Debate and the Politics of Modern Art in Early Postwar Japan” in Japan Forum (2014). He also presented his research at events at the University of California, Los Angeles; the Seattle Art Museum; and the College Art Association in Chicago.

Edward Mack, associate professor, Asian Languages and Literature, returned in March from a year-long stay as a visiting research professor at the International Research Center for Japanese Studies in Kyoto. The 16-volume reproduction of a Japanese textbook series produced in California between 1924 and 1939, which he edited for the publisher Bunsei Shoin, was published in July.

Ken Tadashi Oshima, professor, Architecture, recently became first vice preisdent of the Society of Architectural Historians, and he was promoted to the rank of full professor effective September 2014. His recent publications include Architecturalized Asia: Mapping a Continent through History (coeditor; University of Hawai‘i Press/Hong Kong University Press, 2013).

Robert Pekkanen, professor, Jackson School, is coauthor of Neighborhood Associations and Governance in Japan (Routledge, 2014), which examines Japan’s ubiquitous neighborhood associations, an important feature of the civil society that was the subject of his first book. Pekkanen also coedited a book on U.S. nonprofit advocacy, Nonprofits and Advocacy: Engaging Community and Government in an Era of Retrenchment (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2014) and published a half-dozen book chapters and journal articles. He was promoted to the rank of full professor effective September 2014.

Saadia Pekkanen, Job and Gertrud Tamaki Professor, Jackson School, is coeditor of the recently published Oxford Handbook of the International Relations of Asia (Oxford University Press, 2014). In the last year, she has presented papers on the future direction of area studies and international affairs at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, DC; on the economic-security nexus at the Institut Francais des Relations Internationales (IFRI) in Paris; and on her ongoing research at L’École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales in Paris, as well as at Indiana University, University of Pennsylvania, and Princeton University. She is cochair of the U.S.-Japan Space Forum of the Maureen and Mike Mansfield Foundation. She continues to administer the Jackson School Ph.D. Program and was also appointed the associate director of the Jackson School.

Ken Pyle, Henry M. Jackson Professor of History and Asian Studies, is completing a book manuscript entitled “Japan in the American World Order.” In November 2013, he gave the UW’s Griffith and Patricia Way Lecture entitled “Hiroshima and the Historians.” The lecture was subsequently published in the Pacific Northwest Quarterly and is available on YouTube and the JSIS Japan Studies website. Reflecting on the anniversary of the Journal of Japanese Studies, of which he is the founding editor, he has written an essay, “The Journal of Japanese Studies at Forty,” for the winter 2015 issue of JJS.

Michio Tsutsui, Donald E. Peterson Professor, Human Centered Design and Engineering, and director of the Technical Japanese Program, coedited a collection of essays in Japanese linguistics, culture studies, second language acquisition, and oral proficiency interview titled Nihongo-kyōiku no atarashii chihei o hiraku (New Horizons in Japanese Language Education; Hitsuji Shobō, 2014), which were drawn from three roundtables he organized with colleagues at Princeton University as part of the 19th Princeton Japanese Pedagogy Forum (2012). He was also editorial supervisor of Keesu-sutadii de manabu Nihongo <Chūkyū> (Intermediate Japanese: Learning Japanese through Case Studies; Japan Times, 2014).

Daniel Foote Returns to UW School of Law

In October 2014, Daniel H. Foote began a joint appointment as professor of law at both the University of Tokyo and the University of Washington. He taught in the UW School of Law for 12 years before moving to Tokyo in 2000, and Japan Studies is excited to welcome him back to the UW campus.

Professor Foote also presented the Japan Studies Program’s annual Griffith and Patricia Way Lecture on December 3. The title of his talk was “Japan’s New ‘Jury’ System: A Five-Year Progress Report.” This annual event was endowed in 2006 through the generosity of friends and family of this Seattle couple, as well as the larger community.

During his previous tenure at UW, Foote was the Dan Fenno Henderson Professor of East Asian Legal Studies, and he will hold that title again. In autumn quarter 2014, he is teaching courses on Japanese Law and on International Contract Negotiation, and in winter quarter 2015 he will teach a course titled Criminal Procedure: Adjudication. He will teach at the University of Tokyo during summer semester (April through July). Foote will also be codirector of the UW’s Asian Law Center.

Among his many publications, Foote has recently published “Hōritsuka no yakuwari: Gasshūkoku to no hikaku o chūshin ni” (The Roles of Jurists: Centered on Comparisons with the United States), in Ōmura, ed., Hō no hendō no ninaite (The Bearers of Legal Change; Iwanami Shoten, 2014); “Judicial Law-making and the Creation of Legal Norms in Japan: A Dialogue” (John O. Haley and Daniel H. Foote), in Haley and Takenaka, eds., Legal Innovations in Asia: Judicial Law Making and Comparative Law (Elgar, 2014); “Citizen Participation: Appraising the Saiban’in System,” Michigan State International Law Review (2014); and “The Trials and Tribulations of Japan’s Legal Education Reforms,” Hastings International and Comparative Law Review (2013). His current research projects include Japanese criminal justice reform in historical perspective, alternative dispute resolution/civil justice reform, and the saiban’in system.

A Fond Farewell to the Technical Japanese Program

The UW’s Technical Japanese Program (TJP) began in 1990 in the College of Engineering under the directorship of Professor Michio Tsutsui. In its earliest days, this unique inter-engineering master’s program focused on bridging the technology gap between the United States and Japan by training engineers in advanced Japanese language, culture, and business practices. Over time, however, TJP evolved and expanded along with technology, and the prestigious program remains the only one of its kind in the United States.

The impetus for TJP at UW was the creation of the Donald E. Petersen Professorship, held by Tsutsui, with a gift from Donald Petersen and a partial match from the State of Washington. Major gifts in cash and in kind came from other individuals and corporations. A grant from the Department of Defense for 1993–99 funded a distance learning program for scientists and engineers.

Due to shifting funding priorities in the College of Engineering, the program will close in spring 2015 with Tsutsui’s retirement from the university. But its decades of success guarantee a rich legacy among program alumni spread through many industries and around the world. “I’m very grateful to those who made it possible to create TJP and supported it in many ways for the past 23 years. I’m very proud of this program,” Tsutsui says. After retirement, he plans to continue working on several book projects. His professional publications focus on Japanese grammar, language learning, and the use of multimedia in language acquisition. Masashi Kato, a lecturer in TJP since 1991 and associate director since 2004, left UW in June and is currently an associate faculty member in the World Languages Department at Everett Community College.

Originally available only to students in the College of Engineering, TJP opened its courses to graduate and undergraduate students across campus and beyond. A broad curriculum was built with specific programs to meet the diverse needs of students in engineering, law, business, and the Jackson School. These initiatives included, for example, Technical Japanese for Business Professionals, a certificate program for non-UW students, which trained business people in advanced Japanese, and Language Partner, a powerful multimedia software program for language learning.

Since the program began, it has served 650 students. As described by one of those students, Kathy Liu (Bioengineering, 2008), TJP taught far more than grammar and pronunciation: “Students in TJP receive special trainings on how to communicate properly and effectively in a business and professional setting. Japanese customs and traditions are also taught in detail because only when both language and cultures are understood well can people from different countries communicate effectively to reach successful business outcome.”

TJP’s successful internship program, open to all qualified UW students, has placed more than 100 students in corporations and labs in Japan for three to six months and provided them opportunities to apply their technical Japanese skills in an actual work environment. Internship hosts have included companies in the Mitsubishi group, Hitachi, NEC, Fujitsu, Epson, Panasonic, and many others.

TJP has been a unique part of Japan Studies at the University of Washington and has helped prepare many UW students for jobs in business and technology fields that require specialized Japanese-language skills. Michio Tsutsui and Masashi Kato will be missed by their colleagues and by students, and the Japan Studies Program has been made richer by their countless contributions.

News from Japanese Studies Librarian

The UW Libraries Japan Collection was awarded a grant from the Allen Endowment for Collections to acquire six rare Japanese Bukan registry titles (20 volumes) dating from the Edo period (1600-1868) as well as a grant from the North American Coordinating Council on Japanese Library Resources to acquire a rare 30-volume set on historic aspects of Japanese poetry, Kohitsugaku taisei , which explores poetic traditions in calligraphy, paper, and literary themes.

Azusa Tanaka, Japanese Studies Librarian, coauthored an essay titled “Unpacking Identity: Racial, Ethnic, and Professional Identity and Academic Librarians of Color,” which appeared in Pagowsky & Rigby, eds., The Librarian Stereotype: Deconstructing Perceptions and Presentations of Information Work (Association of College and Research Libraries, 2014). She has also recently published two articles in Japanese on using the National Diet Library’s collaborative Reference Database and on how Japanese librarians should respond to Digital Humanities.

Donald Hellmann Lecture

In a special evening lecture for Japan Studies, Professor Don Hellmann presented a talk titled “The World in Transition: Asia and the Twilight of America’s Century” on October 13. Professor Hellmann’s career at the University of Washington has spanned nearly five decades. He has advised hundreds of graduate students in their masters and doctoral work; instructed thousands of UW undergraduate students on topics of Japanese government, politics, and foreign policy; and was instrumental in creation of the Task Force capstone course requiring majors in International Studies to address real-world problems for evaluation by foreign policy practitioners. His published works comprise a reading library extensive enough to intimidate the most ambitious graduate student. In recognition of his many, many contributions and achievements, Seattle Mayor Edward Murray proclaimed October 13, 2014, as Donald C. Hellmann Day in the City of Seattle.

Student Highlight

JSIS PhD student Joshua Williams traveled to Japan in September 2014 to conduct initial fieldwork for his dissertation. His research looks at the effects of the Internet on politics in Japan, and this fieldwork specifically focused on the causes and effects of a major legal change in 2013 which largely freed political candidates to use the Internet during election campaign periods. He also looked into digital campaign strategies of politicians and political candidates at the national and local levels. Williams conducted interviews and meetings with: five current members of the Japanese Diet and one staff member, one former member of the Diet, three individuals connected with regional politics, two election campaign managers, one youth political and Internet activist, and five academic specialists in Japanese politics—including Hironori Sasada (a UW alumni who is currently an associate professor at Hokkaido University), Steven Reed (who was a visiting professor at UW in 1989), and Michiya Mori (who was a visiting foreign scholar at the UW in 2013-14). A personal highlight during his trip was being mentioned in a tweet by senior LDP member Ichiro Aisawa and in a Facebook post by LDP member Gaku Hashimoto (son of former Japanese Prime Minister Ryutaro Hashimoto).


Jyana Browne (Drama) held a Japan Foundation fellowship to conduct dissertation research at Waseda University during the 2013–14 academic year. Her dissertation is on shinjū (love suicides) in early modern Japanese puppet plays.

 Nikki Brueggeman (JSIS Japan Studies) was awarded a Foreign Language and Area Studies scholarship for Japan Studies for 2014-15.

Zachary Hammer (JSIS Japan Studies) was awarded a Kitto Scholarship for Japan Studies for 2014–15.

Zachary Lim (Linguistics/Asian Languages and Literature) was awarded a Foreign Language and Area Studies scholarship for Japanese Studies for 2014-15.

Christopher Lowy (Asian Languages and Literature) received a Chester Fritz Fellowship for International Research, Autumn 2014 (Tokyo).

Cindi Textor (Asian Languages and Literature) received a Chester Fritz Fellowship for International Research, Autumn 2014 (Seoul) and a Fulbright Scholarship, 2015-16 (Tokyo).

Maggie Thorpe (JSIS Japan Studies) was awarded a Kitto Scholarship for Japan Studies for 2014–15.

 Joshua Williams (JSIS) was awarded a Foreign Language and Area Studies scholarship for Japan Studies for 2014-15.

Several current and former graduate students in Japanese studies presented research at the Association for Japanese Literary Studies at Western Washington University, October 10–12, 2014. Addressing this year’s theme of Religion and Spirituality in Japanese Literature were UW alumni and students Sachi Schmidt-Hori, Jyana Browne, Bonnie McClure, Kaori Igarashi, Sarah Clayton, and Yuki Shigeto.

Sadao Watanabe Exhibit at UW Libraries

An exhibit of the Biblical mingei prints of Japanese printmaker and artist Sadao Watanabe (1913-96) is displayed in the Allen Library North Lobby and in the East Asia Library in autumn 2014. Watanabe is famous for his Biblical prints influenced by the Japanese folk art movement (mingei undo) of the late 1920s and 1930s. This exhibit showcases his stencil prints, original stencils, tools of the artist, as well as monographs from the East Asia Library collection on mingei and mingei artists. Two talks were held in conjunction with this exhibit: on November 6 Anne Pyle shared her experiences as a student of Watanabe, and on December 8 Fred Notehelfer, professor emeritus at UCLA, discussed Christianity in Japan as background for better understanding the artist and the reception of his work. “Art Prints of Watanabe Sadao: Christianity through Japanese Folk Art” continues through December 30, 2014.