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What I'm working on, lately:

What I'm working on, lately:

Their economic power enabled Japanese to somehow pleasurably indulge themselves in nostalgia for a pre-modern innocence that Japan had lost. By the mid-1990’s, however, this nostalgia had become more related to the deterioration of the Japanese economy and society. It arose in the context of a prolonged economic recession and a series of gloomy social incidents, such as an increasing number of brutal murders by teenagers and the nerve gas attacks in the Tokyo railway system by the Aum Supreme…

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Rant: school libraries and DRM

Rant: school libraries and DRM

Most of you know that I’m at work on a Master’s thesis. This thesis involves anime, cyborg theory, and fan culture. It involves reading a lot of Henry Jenkins, Donna Haraway, Susan J. Napier, and other big names. Having finally finished my chapter on FMA and cognitive narratology (not to my satisfaction, but that’s another story), I have begun gathering resources and drawing up outlines for the next — which is on anime fandom and the spectre of Orientalism. Last…

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Fullmetal Alchemist: Still crazy, after all these years.

Fullmetal Alchemist: Still crazy, after all these years.

In preparation for a chapter on anime fandom and cognitive narratology, I’m re-watching Fullmetal Alchemist. I didn’t much care for FMA upon first viewing a few years ago. I found the character designs too simple, and the plot painted in broad strokes. But I kept up with it on the advice of others, and I’m happy I did. For all its cute moments, the series occasionally dips into moments of disturbing grotesquerie and genuine emotional engagement. These moments increase as…

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