|Budget Amount *help
¥2,500,000 (Direct Cost: ¥2,500,000)
Fiscal Year 2003: ¥700,000 (Direct Cost: ¥700,000)
Fiscal Year 2002: ¥700,000 (Direct Cost: ¥700,000)
Fiscal Year 2001: ¥1,100,000 (Direct Cost: ¥1,100,000)
The purpose of the present project is to explore the trajectory of Japanese representations in popular literature written by Eurasian writers in the early twentieth century America. The original yellow peril took root in the medieval fear of Genghis Khan and Mongolian's invasion of Europe. With the hordes of Asian immigrants and Japanses victory in the war with Russia (1904-5), the yellow peril fear recrudesced. It was challenged by several Eurasian authors whose works help us cultivate double readings of the West from the viewpoint of the East and the East from the West.
Winnifred Eaton Reeve, under the pseudonym of Onoto Wattanna, wrote numerous international romances mostly staged in Japan. Her romance deconstructs Orientalism of sexual exploitations of Japanese women by Western men, epitomized in Madame Butterfly and Madame Chrysantheme. By creating a Japanese equivalent of an American "New woman," Watanna calls for a sympathetic inter-racial woman-to-woman relationship. YoneNoguchi's Morning Glory writings openly criticize fake "Japan fictions." Though first intended to be a parody of Onoto Watanna's pseudo Japanese romance, The American Diary of a Japanese Girl was received as another (poorly made) Japan fiction, partly because of Noguchi's episodic telling of the story, and partly because of the book illustrations featuring Japonism by GenjiroYeo. Hashimura Togo, a brain child of a white poet-writer, Wallace Irwin, first appeared in 1907 in the midst of xenophobia and racial antagonism against Asian immigrants. Called more than once by the name of "the yellow peril," Hashimura Togo's astute social commentary sugarcoated with foolish slapsticks covers illogic of the yellow peril arguments as well as the sentimental designs of Japan craze or American craze for things Japanese.