« Photographie d’architecture — Architectural Photography — 建築写真 »

le 15 juin de 9h à 11h (heure française) et de 16h à 18h (heure japonaise)

Lieu : Waseda University (Tokyo) / Zoom

Address早稲田大学政治経済学術院〒169-­‐8050東京都新宿区西早稲田1-­‐6-­‐1、3号館6階604号室 Waseda University, School of Political Science and Economics, Building 3, 6F, room 604 Nishi­‐Waseda1­‐6­‐1,Shinjuku­‐ku,Tokyo〒169-­‐8050

Lien zoom : voir le programme ci-dessous

9:00-9:30 (France)/16:00-16:30 (Japan)

Cecile Laly (Visual Culture, Kyoto Seika University)

Introduction to the annual seminar

9:30-10:30 (France)/16:30-17:30 (Japan)

Pauline Beichen Yang (Contemporary Literary Studies, University of Tokyo)

Reconstructing the Ruin: Photography, Novel, and Japanese Modernity in A True Novel (本格小説, Honkaku Shōsetsu) by Mizumura Minae

Scattered throughout Mizumura Minae’s novel Honkaku shōsetsu (2002) are the captioned, page-­sized, monochrome photographs by architect and photographer Horiguchi Toyota. Featuring the architecture and nature of Karuizawa, these depopulated pictures contribute to the nostalgic narrative of modern Japan as a construction bound to be devoured by the passage of time. Unlike the theme of ruins, the medium of photography itself becomes a register of past reality that appears to be faithful and enduring. This echoes and buttresses the novel’s ambition to overcome an allegedly irreversible trajectory of world history with fiction, especially with a genre that revives modern Japanese literature. The artistic preservation of an endangered landscape of modern Japan fundamentally points to the reconstruction of melancholic national subjectivity in the postmodern present. A comparison with the incorporation of photography in W. G. Sebald’s novel Austerlitz (2001) reveals that, besides the identity crisis they share, Sebald’s work nonetheless suggests the opacity of photography, the elusive truth of history, and the viewers’ agency in remembering as imagining.


Cecile Laly
Cecile Laly is a Specially Appointed Lecturer at Kyoto Seika University. Speciallized in the history of Japanese photography, she is researching the representation of architecture in the work of Japanese photographers. Among other texts, she published Photobooks dedicated to Gunkanjima: Random Personal Memories or Strategical Publications? (2020), and Photography. A new way of presenting Japanese architecture in the nineteenth century (2022).

Pauline Beichen Yang
Pauline Beichen Yang is a research student at the Department of Contemporary Literary Studies, University of Tokyo, currently studying the post-­Cold War afterlives of modern(ist) literature. Her master’s dissertations at Cambridge and Oxford looked respectively at Hayashi Fumiko’s travelogues in the 1930s and photography in Sebald and Mizumura’s novels.

Les interventions seront en anglais.