Dear JAG members and friends,

I would like to share some news about our organizations and our activities in the coming year.

JAG has been growing in recent years; it currently connects 14 universities and over 100 faculty, graduate students, and alumni. Our mission is to bring faculty and graduate students together in rigorous interdisciplinary conversation addressing Japanese “art” (in the broadest sense). We strive for an atmosphere of collaborative exchange and intensive engagement. Our growing Publications page documents the ever-expanding list of scholarly works to which our workshops and events have contributed. We have recently added to our advisory board, and received recommitments by several existing members. These new and reaffirming members include Hayashi Michio, Watanabe Toshio, Shimada Yoshiko, Sharon Daniel, and Adrian Favell.

The University of Chicago joined JAG last year, becoming our 14th member institution. I am hopeful that other institutions may move towards formally joining our group in the coming year as well.

We will hold the Seventh annual Works-in-Progress writing workshop at Lake Arrowhead from May 31-June 2. The CFP has yielded a considerable body of responses; we will be using an expanded, three-group format this year. As usual, the retreat is for intensive group discussion of well-formed works in progress, that is, substantial writings complete with appropriate scholarly apparatus etc. Once again we hope to have a balanced mix of graduate students and faculty for the event. As always, the goal will be to “create an atmosphere of constructive support and interchange among the group” in furtherance of the work and our intellectual exchange (to borrow from Miriam Wattles’ words from the inaugural 2008 event). As always, non-participant family members are welcome; the cost per night for their food and lodging is $205 (and $125 per night for children 3-14 years of age). Lots for them to do while we meet. Prospective JAG institutions and individuals are also welcome to apply, though they will have to self-fund (contact me for details).

Many thanks for your support and participation, and I hope to see many of you at the events this year.

William Marotti,
Director, JAG