Cassandra Atherton is about to take up a visiting scholar’s position at Harvard University, where her supervisor will be the University Professor for the Humanities, Stephen Greenblatt, ‘Father of New Historicism’. During her time at Harvard, Cassandra will use the university’s resources to continue her work on public intellectuals, as well as having the advantage of receiving feedback on the papers she presents. The work undertaken will build on her earlier book In So Many Words, but while that book was based on interviews with American public intellectuals such as Noam Chomsky, Harold Bloom and Camille Paglia, she will take a new direction at Harvard, exploring two examples of the public intellectual in Japan: Hibakusha poets and the films of Hayao Miyazaki. Cassandra first presented her work on Hibakusha poets when she was a Visiting Scholar at Sophia University (Tokyo) in 2014, and has subsequently presented a paper to her colleagues at the Monash University Japanese Studies Centre, as well as publishing an article in Japan Focus. She began researching Miyazaki’s work at the Ghibli Museum in Tokyo in 2014, and has already had an article on the film Ponyo accepted for publication in the Japan Studies Review. While at Harvard, Cassandra will develop this article into a monograph on Miyazaki as reluctant public intellectual.
You can read more about Cassandra’s recent work and upcoming projects on her website.