- PhD, East Asian Languages and Literatures, Yale University
- BA, Japanese Language and Literature, Tufts University
My research explores the intersections between literature, history, and performance in classical and medieval Japan (10th through 15th centuries), and has been funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Japan Foundation, and the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science. My first monograph, Performing Transgression: Crowds, Bodies, and Identification in Heian Japan (currently under review), reconsiders the multisensory richness and socio-cultural impact of non-elite performance, particularly the boisterous rhythms of dengaku dances and the carnivalesque feats of sangaku acrobatics. I approach these performances, which transgressed social, corporeal, and ontological boundaries and variously attracted and repelled elites, as opportunities to reexamine the contours of identification, community, and cosmology. My next book project, Sensation and Renunciation in The Tale of Genji, draws on recent work in sensory studies, religious studies, and literary studies to explore how vernacular tales dramatize the tension between the rich sensorium of court life and the looming imperative of Buddhist renunciation.
Before arriving at the University of Utah in 2020, I taught introductory humanities courses at the University of Chicago for three years, and premodern Japanese literature and performance at Kyushu University for three years. The experience of teaching beyond my field of study informs my pedagogical approach of situating the study of Japan within broader discussions about meaning, history, language, and media. Some of my courses do so within specifically premodern contexts ("Premodern Japanese Literature," "Classical Japanese"), while others range across the modern/premodern divide ("Theater and Performance in Japan," "Japanese Soundscapes").