Transgenerational Remembrance: Performance and the Asia-Pacific War in Contemporary Japan
by Jessica Nakamura
4 pm - 5:30 pm
April 15, 2020
McCune Conference Room, 6020 HSSB
Join us for a dialogue between Jessica Nakamura (Theater and Dance) and Catherine Nesci (French and Italian, Comparative Literature) about Nakamura’s new book, Transgenerational Remembrance: Performance and the Asia-Pacific War in Contemporary Japan. Refreshments will be served.
In Transgenerational Remembrance, Jessica Nakamura investigates the role of artistic production in the commemoration and memorialization of the Asia-Pacific War (1931–1945) in Japan since 1989. During this time, survivors of Japanese aggression and imperialism, previously silent about their experiences, have sparked contentious public debates about the form and content of war memories. Working from theoretical frameworks of haunting and ethics, Nakamura develops an analytical lens based on the Noh theater ghost. Noh emphasizes the agency of the ghost and the dialogue between the dead and the living. Integrating her Noh-inflected analysis into ethical and transnational feminist queries, Nakamura shows that performances move remembrance beyond current evidentiary and historiographical debates.
Jessica Nakamura’s research focuses on theater and performance in the Asia-Pacific. Her essays have appeared in the journals Modern Drama, Performance Research, and Trans Asia Photography Review and in the edited volumes Performance in a Militarized Culture and Performing the Secular. Nakamura has trained in Japanese Dance, Chinese Beijing Opera, and Balinese Dance. Her directing work includes productions of Federico Garcia Lorca’s Yerma and Gao Xingjian’s Wild Man; she most recently translated and directed Family Portrait by contemporary Japanese playwright Shu Matsui.
Sponsored by the IHC’s Harry Girvetz Memorial Endowment