What is anime? It is a global phenomenon and a source of Japanese national pride. It is also a pastime for countless people around the world. In essence, it is simply an art of moving pictures. In this course, we will explore the deeper origins of how pictures in Japanese visual art evolved into the modern form of anime and how this has influenced the national psyche.
Initially we will look at the early history of graphic representations of life embodied in classical literature such as illustrated scrolls. We will then turn to later forms of illustration that entailed intricate and humorous depictions of scenes for novels and newspapers. In the following session we will review how the earliest forms of animated film in Japan interacted with the global influence of Walt Disney’s characters.
The ensuing section will examine the evolution of anime following the end of world war two, where Japanese animators sought to retain a distinctive artistic style through the medium of television. This entails a focus on Tezuka Osamu who is regarded as the ‘god’ of anime.
Finally we will explore the vast treasure chest of genres of Japanese anime that have emerged since then – sci-fi, comedy, sports, robots, horror and commentary on everyday life.
Please note that this course is offered as an in-person course in our Hamilton, New Zealand classrooms and also live-streamed via Zoom. If live-streaming, you can also interact with the rest of the class and the teacher. If the time zones don't work out for you, you can also choose to watch the video recordings of the live sessions, which are usually available 1-2 days after each session (which allows time for our video editors to edit and post each session to the course web page).