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Focus 5a&6:Gender Dynamics in Contemporary Japanese Society (I)


Admission requirements

Students should normally have followed at least one Japanese studies BA2 focus course in sociology or a related discipline, such as anthropology or material culture. If you are not sure whether you are eligible, please contact the instructor.


Gender structures the lives of women and men in all societies, yet varies in shape and dynamics. In this course, we will explore the dynamics of gender in contemporary Japanese society. Going beyond women as the primary focus of gender studies, readings will explore the structures, processes and practices, which contribute to gender difference (as it affects both men and women) and its reproduction in the economy, society, and the state. In preparation for the BA thesis, which will be written in part two of this course, we will also discuss different methodologies and ways to conduct research, both on gender and other topics.

Course objectives

The goal of this course is not only to become familiar with key issues in the study of gender in Japan, but also to examine different conceptualizations and methodologies for studying gender. Students will receive guidance on how to conduct independent research on a topic of choice and learn to write and present on a gender aspect of contemporary Japanese society in a scholarly fashion in preparation for their BA thesis.


Time and date on which the course is offered or a link to the website.

Mode of instruction


Assessment method

Participation element (attendance, presentation): 30%; Review element (Review essay 1,000-1,500 words): 20%; research paper (2,500-3,000 words): 30%; Summative element (Blackboard postings and class assignments): 20%


Blackboard plays an essential part in this course. All important information about the course, including the syllabus, course requirements, and announcements, will be available on the course website. As part of class participation, students will also be required to make weekly postings on the Blackboard website. Internet access is therefore essential in order to complete this course successfully.

Reading list

Course readings will be made available via Blackboard, under ‘course documents.’


This has to be filled out by the key-user of the department.

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