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ERIC Number: ED550604
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 259
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-2678-9182-2
Editing Identity: Literary Anthologies and the Construction of the Author in Meiji Japan
Des Jardin, Molly Catherine
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Michigan
"Editing Identity: Literary Anthologies and the Construction of the Author in Meiji Japan" problematizes widespread acceptance of anthologies of authors' "complete works" as both transparent and authoritative compendia of Japanese literature. In the Meiji period (1868-1912), they enjoyed a sudden boom in popularity and have played a crucial role as access points for the study of literature ever since. Through their construction of authors via their oeuvres, as well as their effacement of multiple versions and contexts through re-presenting texts in a homogeneous format, editors of anthologies have long influenced the boundaries of "Japanese literature." Author-centric anthologies, or "kojin zenshu," transform historical writers with coherent, stable identities, remaking them into essentialized "authors" who both define and are defined by their collected bodies of work. Yet anthologies' representations of authorship could not be more different from the context in which they emerged: Meiji authorial identities were complex, performances by entire literary coteries as well as single writers using a number of pseudonyms. "Editing Identity" explores the tension between these disparate expressions of authorship, and lays bare the construction of the "author" in its historical moment through a study grounded in the history of the book. "Editing Identity" questions approaches to literature that anachronistically read back later concepts of authorship, obscuring the reality of writing in Meiji Japan. Through examining case studies of authorial performances in the 1880s and 1890s, media-centric assessments of literature, and the location of authorship primarily in the context of a publication, it reorients the study of literature on writing, publishing, copyright, and reviewing practices. Further, it investigates the power of anthologies to construct and present a holistic authorial identity, and at the same time, on their function as memorials in the wake of writers' deaths as reflected in editors' own prefaces to the anthologies themselves. In a critical reassessment of the historical contexts and roles of author-centric anthologies, "Editing Identity" calls for a fundamental recalibration of our assumptions about literary production and the authority of anthologies and the limits they have imposed on understandings of the production and reception of literature. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Japan