My latest book is scheduled to be published on 31 January 2020. It is now available for pre-order on the Channel View Publications Website. Contents Tourism and Pop Culture Fandom: Transnational Tourist Experiences is a collection of essays that examines the phenomenon of contents tourism in an international perspective. My own contributions are the chapter “The Contents Tourism of Jane Austen’s American Fans” and the conclusions, “Sustainable Contents Tourism in the 21st Century”. I co-edited the book with my long-time research partner, Takayoshi Yamamura.
I have an academic conference “double header” in June. On 15 June I presented my research on tourism relating to Clouds Above the Hill at the Showa Literature Society. On 26 June I present on War-related Contents Tourism at the Travel and Tourism Research Association conference in Melbourne. Both are part of our new contents tourism focusing on war-related entertainment products and tourism.
My main research partner of the past decade, Dr Takayoshi Yamamura, has secured a new grant to continue the work of our contents tourism project (2014-2019). The three-year Kakenhi B Grant (5-20 million yen category, 2019-2022) project is called 「コンテンツツーリズムにおける「戦争」の消費と歴史理解に関する国際比較研究」, which translates as “The consumption of ‘war’ in contents tourism and comparative international research on the historical understanding”. With this project, my contents tourism work has come full circle to link up with my war memories work …
My article “Islands of ‘Dark’ and ‘Light/Lite’ Tourism: War-related contents tourism around the Seto Inland Sea” has been published as part of the special edition “War, Tourism, and Modern Japan” in the journal Japan Review. It is open access and can be viewed here.
As my contents tourism grant wraps up, I have published three research notes on the International Journal of Contents Tourism about my research into tourism relating to The Last Samurai.
On the trail of The Last Samurai (I): Taranaki
On the trail of The Last Samurai (II): Hobbiton vs Uruti Valley
On the trail of The Last Samurai (III): Himeji and Kagoshima
My review of Hiro Saito’s book The History Problem: The Politics of War Commemoration in East Asia (University of Hawai‘i Press, 2017) has been published in Monumenta Nipponica 73.2 (2018), pp. 320-324.
It is a great honour to have been asked to give the WG Beasley Memorial Lecture at SOAS on 13 March 2019. The title of my talk is “On the Trail of Shiba Ryotaro and Jane Austen: Novels, Heritage, and Contents Tourism in Japan and the UK”. For further details and information on how to register for the event, please see the SOAS event page.
My review of Marc Steinberg and Alexander Zahlten, Media Theory in Japan (Duke University Press, 2017), has just been published in Asian Studies Review (online 16 September 2018).
In September I will be giving the keynote lecture at the International Conference on New Frontiers in Japanese Studies: see the conference homepage. Details of the keynote lecture are here: Inagaki Seminar on Japan: “Japan Studies in the 21st Century”
There is an interview with me about contents tourism in the July Edition of English Journal (on sale 6 June). Click here for more information.