Modern Japanese Poetry

This working group meets biweekly to read and discuss Japanese poetry of the modern period, primarily Meiji (1868–1912) and Taishō (1912–1926) eras, as well as early Shōwa (1926–1989). The focus is both on waka and its relationship to the premodern waka tradition—and on blank verse and its engagement with synchronic modernisms in Europe. Poets might include Ishikawa Takuboku, Kanbara Ariake, Kitahara Hakushū, Miyazawa Kenji, Yosano Akiko, and others. Readings in Japanese; discussions in English. Participants need not prepare for the sessions. The texts—and glossaries where needed—are provided. The participants take turns in reading the poems aloud; informal translation and discussion of content and form follow. All members of the Yale community with knowledge of Japanese at the upper-intermediate level and above are welcome to join.