Nov 17, 2023 Open Lecture “Gas Mask Nation: Wartime Civil Air Defense, Aviation, and Japan’s Aerial Imaginary”
We are pleased to invite Professor Weisenfeld to give an open lecture,“Gas Mask Nation: Wartime Civil Air Defense, Aviation, and Japan’s Aerial Imaginary”
This presentation will address material from Professor Weisenfeld’s new book Gas Mask Nation, specifically the relationship between air defense, aviation, and the aerial imagination in Japan.
Outline of Lecture
Gas Mask Nation: Wartime Civil Air Defense, Aviation, and Japan’s Aerial Imaginary
◆Speaker：Prof. Gennifer Weisenfeld, Duke University (USA)
This presentation will address material from Professor Weisenfeld’s new book Gas Mask Nation, specifically the relationship between air defense, aviation, and the aerial imagination in Japan. By the war years, fascination with aviation was deeply ingrained. It was also a family affair that permeated all generations, especially the nation’s youth, inculcated through education as well as popular entertainment. Japanese visualizations of aviation had long been aesthetically implicated in the nation’s militarized modernity. State-sponsored air-mindedness and mobilization for air defense fortified this connection. Nevertheless, airplanes still retained their cachet as mesmerizing spectacle. They were simultaneously military weapons and titillating entertainment. Even in Japan’s austere cultural climate of national defense, aeriality, what has been defined as “a process of aerial seeing, picturing and thinking,” provided visual pleasure. Civil air defense fused the scopic joys of aeriality with existential fear, producing a kind of technological sublime whose beauty was both awesome and awful. A visual stroll through the cultural landscape of aeronautic imagery reveals a creative investment among the “air-minded” in Japan that traveled through the 1930s all the way to the end of the war. This paper explores that landscape of visual pleasure.
November 17th 2023(Fri) 18:30-20:30, Hybrid (In-person and Virtual).
3rd Floor, Conference room, Tachikawa Memorial Hall, Ikebukuro Campus, Rikkyo University
(the Zoom URL will be sent to you by email the day before the event)
Co-sponsored by the Graduate School of Social Design Studies and the Rikkyo Institute for Social Design Studies.
The lecture will be conducted in English and Japanese. (simultaneous translation provided in person only)
Capacity 100 (in-person)
For Rikkyo's students, faculty and staff members, alumni, and open to the public
Free, Registration required