I’m writing to introduce Re-Envisioning Japan: Japan as Destination in 20th Century Visual and Material Culture at http://humanities.lib.rochester.edu/rej/.
This open-access critical archive is a multimedia project using travel, education, and the production and exchange of images and objects as a lens to investigate changing representations of Japan and its place in the world in the first half of the 20th century. Re-Envisioning Japan makes available a wide range of ephemeral objects (e.g., films, postcards, brochures, photographs, stereographs, and guide books); please see the menu tabs under ‘Research” for more detailed background and other information. The site is also a versatile pedagogical tool. As author and editor, I’ve been using it in the curriculum of “Tourist Japan,” a course in which tourism and tourist culture is used to illuminate the relationship between modernization processes and identity formation. Using Re-envisioning Japan, students build their own exhibits linking cultural objects generated by tourism and education with evolving concepts of nationalism and cultural identity.
Re-Envisioning Japan is inherently ongoing: I work continuously on adding metadata and contextualization. The addition of a 16mm Timeline (See “Moving Images”) is the most recent development. I am currently working on descriptions for each film and fair use excerpts of titles with complex copyright issues; some titles not yet uploaded await copyright permission. Similar Timelines for 8mm film formats are planned for the end of January. In 2015 we’ll be migrating the entire site to an Omeka platform in order to make it even more interactive. In the meantime, if you have any information about any of the objects that you would like to share with others, please contact me at email@example.com. Feedback and suggestions are also most welcome.
Best wishes for the new year.
Japanese Studies and Film and Media Studies
Department of Modern Languages and Cultures
University of Rochester
PO Box 270082
Rochester NY 14627
Tel. (585) 275-4251