Thursday 15 April
Scholars, critics, and fans recognize the importance of manga magazines to the culture and circulation of manga content in Japan, but pay less attention to the format of komikkusu, or comics: small paperback books that collect and reprint the manga serialized in magazines. Komikkusu are, in fact, the most common format of manga consumption for much of the world today, with a significant role in shaping manga content, genres, and industries. This talk will discuss the historical development of manga comics as a media form and also discuss their unique affordances through the recent success of Gotouge Koyoharu’s Kimetsu no yaiba (aka Demon Slayer), a media sensation whose manga have sold record numbers and whose adapted film is the highest grossing in Japan’s box office history.
About the Speaker
Bryan Hikari Hartzheim is an assistant professor in the School of International Liberal Studies and Graduate School of International Culture and Communication at Waseda University. Having worked or conducted fieldwork in the animation and games industries of Japan for several years, his research focuses on media industries, platforms, and franchises of contemporary Japanese popular culture. He is the co-editor of The Franchise Era: Managing Media in the Digital Economy (Edinburgh University Press, 2019) and the author of a forthcoming monograph on the game design of Hideo Kojima.
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