Published: Jan. 5, 2023


The Terasaki Center for Japanese Studies Graduate Student Conference

April 17th

University of California Los Angeles

Submission Deadline: January 30th, 2023, 5:00pm (PST)


Transgression, by its very nature, is enigmatic. At once it implies various trespasses on established social, moral, or legal orders, while also suggesting a tantalizing foray into the forbidden. Beyond the mere act it describes, transgression can paradoxically serve a normative function as it establishes ex nihilo the very boundaries it seeks to challenge. The word itself raises questions about the very action it describes: transgressing what, when, where, how, and most importantly why? After all, as graduate students we are actively encouraged to grapple with and engage in transgressions ourselves, whether those transgressions be objects of study or a means to go beyond previously set boundaries in our own fields. This conference offers a chance for us to explore transgression as a generative process more thoroughly, as both a historical and conceptual phenomenon. The aim of this conference is to expose the objects of our studies to new scrutiny regarding the various geographical, temporal, and disciplinary boundaries we inevitably find ourselves confined to. We therefore invite participants to address the idea of transgression in their own work, be these thematic or methodological, to answer questions concerning what role transgression plays in their research, and how transgression establishes and/or undermines the very boundaries it engages with.


The Terasaki Center for Japanese Studies Graduate Student Conference invites papers from graduate students across all departments within the humanities and the social sciences whose research includes Japan. We welcome submissions for individual papers and presentations from graduate students at all levels. Proposals may cover a diverse field of topics and approaches, and can span chronology and geography. Participants are encouraged to address the idea of transgression in their own work, and proposals examining spatial, temporal, disciplinary, and methodological transgressions are particularly welcome.  


Abstracts of up to 300 words maximum with a working title should be submitted by January 30, 2023, at 5:00pm (PST) to the following Google Form:

Selected participants will be notified of their acceptance by mid-February. Selected applicants will then be required to submit a final draft of their paper by late March.


Participants are also encouraged to join us after the conference for a workshop headed by our keynote speaker, Dr. Seth Jacobowitz (PhD, Cornell University) Literature Professor at Texas State University, whose recent work Writing Technology in Meiji Japan: A Media History of Modern Japanese Literature and Visual Culture (Harvard Asia Center, 2016) was awarded the International Convention of Asia Scholars Book Prize in the Humanities. More information will be provided closer to the conference date.


Please direct any questions you may have to the following Google Survey: