Global Japanese StudiesWaseda University


Global Japanese Literary and Cultural Studies (Doctoral Program)


Global-J develops human resources who are fully capable of participating in overseas English-language scholarly environments, grounded in the scholarly accomplishments in Japanese literature and culture of Waseda University. In contrast to existing conventional Japanese-language courses in Japanese literature, which aim to produce research papers for Japanese-language academic journals and to place graduates in Japanese-language education institutions, Global-J aims to disseminate English-language research that proactively incorporates European and American literary theories and comparative literary methodologies in addition to strong foundations in existing Japanese literary and cultural scholarship. Global-J also aims to train researchers who will support emerging new fields in European and American studies of Japanese literature and culture.

Lectures and research guidance are provided both in English and Japanese; however, dissertations should as a rule be written in English.


(1)Mentoring by cutting-edge scholars from around the world

Global-J invites leading scholars from around the world to mentor its students. In addition to full-time dedicated faculty members, Global-J through its joint appointment system promotes collaborative education and research with scholars who are playing leading roles around the globe. Moreover, Global-J offers coursework in both English and Japanese, including a range of classes that provide the full range of knowledge, the flexible tools, and the repertoire of skills needed to become researchers and educators who will become future leaders of Japanology on the international stage.

(2)Making full use of the scholarly accomplishments and resources of Waseda University

Waseda faculty members in Japanese literature and other relevant fields jointly provide mentoring, and Japanese-language coursework and scholarly training. The students of Global-J enroll in lecture coursed together with the students from Waseda’s Japanese-language Japanese literary course, as well as participating in joint workshops and other relevant scholarly activities. Global-J fully capitalizes on the geographical advantage of its location in Tokyo, the capital of Japan, and it takes full advantage of the intellectual resources accumulated through the more than 125-year history of literary studies programs at Waseda University.

(3)The Fields of Global Japanology

Japanese literary studies can provide a starting point for other relevant fields of Japanology (including Japanese language, Japanese history, theater, art history, subculture studies, among others). In concrete terms, Global-J maintains a focus on fields essential to Japanology such as literary and critical theory, media studies, translation studies, world literature, history of writing systems and literacy, Japanese and comparative mythology, theater and performance studies, as well as on other emerging new fields of scholarship.

(4)Developing human resources who can thrive in today’s global environment

Recent years have seen an increasing demand for faculty who can teach in English. Global-J develops human resources who can answer to this need and meet the demand for Japanology not only in Japan but around the world, including the United States, Asia and Europe.

(5)Studying abroad and overseas cooperation

Waseda University has conducted a double degree program for Japanese literature with Columbia University since 2008. Moreover, the university has promoted cooperative programs such as exchanges of students and teachers with UCLA under the Tadashi Yanai Initiative for Globalizing Japanese Humanities since 2014. As a top global university project, Waseda University’s Graduate School of Letters, Arts and Sciences has established a network of global Japanese literary and cultural studies with Columbia University and UCLA as hub universities since 2014. The education and research activities of Global-J are likewise conducted in cooperation with these overseas research institutes that are world leaders in the field of Japanology.

(6)Cooperation with the Ryusaku Tsunoda Center of Japanese Culture

The Ryusaku Tsunoda Center of Japanese Culture was opened in January 2015 in Waseda University’s Research Institute for Letters, Arts and Sciences as a global center for Japanese literary and cultural studies with the mission of promoting the dissemination and exchange of humanistic scholarship in the field of Japanology. Since then, Waseda University has regularly hosted faculty from the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures of Columbia University as well as doctoral graduates from that department who now teach at European and U.S. universities, working with them to establish a nonpareil joint research network involving the world’s top researchers. The students of Global-J make full use of this knowledge migration system that connects participating universities through Waseda University as its central hub, participating in workshops and symposiums and presenting research findings in both Japanese and English.

(7)Entrance examination

Students applying for admission to the doctoral program will be evaluated based on written and oral examination mainly through evaluation of academic writing samples,, English proficiency and general knowledge about Japanese literature.
Students applying for admission to the Master’s degree program will be evaluated based on written and oral examination, mainly through evaluation of academic writing samples, English proficiency, and general knowledge about Japanese literature.
If you want more informations about entrance examination, refer this page.

(8)Season for entrance

Applicants choose to enroll starting in either April or September.



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