The Department of Languages, Literatures, and Linguistics (LLL) in Syracuse University’s College of Arts and Sciences has been awarded a major grant from the Japan Foundation to build a Japanese Studies Program.
LLL will use the four-year, $190,540 grant award to expand its current Japanese Language Program into the teaching and study of Japanese film, literature, and culture. The award will underwrite the cost of not only new courses, additional events and activities, and study-abroad opportunities, but also the appointment of LLL’s first tenure-track assistant professor of Japanese literature and film.
Gail Bulman, associate professor and chair of LLL, says the expansion will create new courses and enhance collaboration opportunities across Syracuse University’s Colleges and within the CNY region.
“We are grateful to the Japan Foundation, whose generous philanthropy adds energy and vigor to our campus community,” she says. “This expanded Japanese program is a response to the growing interest in East Asian languages and cultures. It also meets a variety of academic and professional needs, preparing students for graduate studies or immediate opportunities in teaching, business, and communications.”
Specifically, the grant award will enable LLL to offer several new courses in Japanese film, literature, popular culture, and anime. Two interdisciplinary courses, one targeting Japanese culture for business professionals, and a second on the geography, politics, history, art, and culture of “Japan Today” are being planned, as well.
The LLL department also intends to use the grant to offer more immersive learning opportunities overseas and to continue its annual Japanese Studies lecture series, featuring prominent Japanese studies scholars from around the world. The first featured speaker this April will be Joanne Bernardi, associate professor of Japanese at the University of Rochester and a renowned expert of Japanese cinema, culture. She will be speaking about her latest work: a digital humanities project entitled Re-Envisioning Japan on Friday, April 1.
The Japan Foundation was established in 1972 with the mission to promote international cultural exchange and mutual understanding between Japan and other countries. The foundation’s activities consist of three major categories: Arts & Cultural Exchange, Japanese Studies and Intellectual Exchange, and Japanese-Language Education Overseas.
LLL is one of Syracuse’s largest, most diverse academic departments, providing instruction in 17 languages and Linguistics to more than 6,000 students. The department offers 10 majors, including a new joint degree with the School of Education in Spanish education; and three master’s degrees in French, Spanish, and linguistics. Most of LLL’s academic programs are interdisciplinary and experiential, offering additional study opportunities through SU Abroad.