Organized Panel Session
This panel focuses on various representations that relate to female bodies and their bodily excretions, such as blood, urine, the excrement, in Japanese literature and culture. Examining a vast array of texts, from the ancient myths and folktales to contemporary Japanese literary compositions, this panel seeks at problematizing and illuminating various complex discourses related to body politics that have formed and influenced these representations across a large timespan in Japanese literary and cultural tradition.
Studying the Japanese ancient myths, Marina Shchepetunina examines how the body excretions and various taboos related to childbirth pertain to the notions of purity, rejuvenation, defilement, and death in Japan. Lindsay R. Morrison considers links between gender and representations of bodily excretions in a selection of Japanese animal bride and bridegroom tales. Linda Galvane examines how the excremental rhetoric in Ogino Anna’s Tales of Peaches demonstrating the complexity of the excremental rhetoric that cannot be reduced to one singular (male) gendered influence. Lastly, the discussant Ito Hiromi, presents her unique view on the theme of women's bodies and bodily fluids in Japanese texts. Highly acknowledged for her poetry, prose, essays, and spectacular performances of her works, Ito's writing has been permeated with the issues and themes brought into attention by this panel's other presenters. Ito's participation presents an exclusive opportunity to appreciate the vision of one of the most important voices in contemporary literature and engender a creative and unique platform for the exchange of ideas.