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Shirane, Haruo 1951-

Shirane, Haruo 1951-

PERSONAL: Born 1951. Education: Columbia College, B.A., 1974; Columbia University, Ph.D., 1983.

ADDRESSES: Office— Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures, Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Columbia University, 2960 Broadway, New York, NY 10027-6902. E-mail— [email protected]

CAREER: Columbia University, New York, NY, 1987—, began as assistant professor, became Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures director of graduate studies, Shincho Professor of Japanese Literature and Culture, 1996—.

AWARDS, HONORS: The Bridge of Dreams: A Poetics of the Tale of Genji was named a Choice outstanding book, the Japanese-language version was awarded the Kadokawa Gen’yoshi Prize, for the best study on Japanese literature; Haiku Society of America award, 1998, for Traces of Dreams: Landscape, Cultural Memory, and the Poetry of Bashô, the Japanese-language version was awarded the Ishida Hakyu Prize, 2002; grants from the Fulbright Foundation, National Endowment for the Humanities, American Council of Learned Societies, Social Science Research Council, and Japan Foundation.

WRITINGS

The Bridge of Dreams: A Poetics of the Tale of Genji, Stanford University Press (Stanford, CA), 1987.

Traces of Dreams: Landscape, Cultural Memory, and the Poetry of Bashô, Stanford University Press (Stanford, CA), 1998.

(Editor, with Tomi Suzuki) Inventing the Classics: Modernity, National Identity, and Japanese Literature, Stanford University Press (Stanford, CA), 2000.

(Editor) Early Modern Japanese Literature: An Anthology, 1600-1900, Columbia University Press (New York, NY), 2002.

Classical Japanese: A Grammar, Columbia University Press (New York, NY), 2005.

(Editor) The Tales of the Heike, translated by Burton Watson, Columbia University Press (New York, NY), 2006.

(Editor) Traditional Japanese Literature: An Anthology, Beginnings to 1600, Columbia University Press (New York, NY), 2006.

Classical Japanese Reader and Essential Dictionary, Columbia University Press (New York, NY), 2007.

SIDELIGHTS: Haruo Shirane is a scholar of Japanese culture and literature who has written articles and books on premodern and postmodern fiction, poetry, literary theory, and history. His Traces of Dreams: Landscape, Cultural Memory, and the Poetry of Bashô is a study of the seventeenth-century Zen-influenced haiku poet. Pacific Affairs contributor Sonja Arntzen considered it “the most comprehensive study to date.” She wrote: “What distinguishes Shirane’s approach in this work is that he always interprets Basho’s writing and thought from within the full complexity of his historical and discursive context.... Within that context, Basho’s haiku and other writings are revealed as extraordinarily rich in meaning.”

Julie Iezzi reviewed Early Modern Japanese Literature: An Anthology, 1600-1900 in Asian Theatre Journal, writing: “This comprehensive anthology of early modern literature offers an extensive range of prose fiction, poetry, drama, essays, treatises, and literary criticism. More than two hundred woodblock prints and photographs illustrate the text, giving a sense of how the material looked on the page in the original Japanese, as well as how it appears on stage.” The highlights of the volume include kabuki and puppet plays, contemporary and period plays, picture books, readers, satiric sermons, and books of humor.

A Kirkus Reviews contributor reviewed The Tales of the Heike, describing it as: “Intriguing, mini-sagas of samurai derring-do and nimble wit, with a distinctly Buddhist flavor.” The warrior tales are spun by blind lute minstrels, the traditional method employed by Kabuki and No drama. Shirane provides an introduction and glossary of characters that make the stories more available for the scholar or student. The Kirkus Reviews critic concluded: “Terrifically exciting and spiritually rich.”

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES

PERIODICALS

Asian Theatre Journal, spring, 2006, Julie Iezzi, review of Early Modern Japanese Literature: An Anthology, 1600-1900, p. 207.

Kirkus Reviews, June 1, 2006, review of The Tales of the Heike, p. 542.

Pacific Affairs, fall, 2000, Sonja Arntzen, review of Traces of Dreams: Landscape, Cultural Memory, and the Poetry of Bashô, p. 458.

ONLINE

Columbia University Web site, http://www.columbia.edu/ (February 3, 2007), biography.

Haiku-heute, http://www.haiku-heute.de/ (December 15, 2006), Udo Wenzel, “Traces of Bashô” (interview).*

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