Department of English and Modern Languages

  • Japanese
  • Teaching

    Delivering lectures to help our students learn the language and discover aspects of Japan is our top priority. We are also enthusiastic about research and being the leading experts in our fields.

    Language Learning

    Japanese is notoriously one of the more difficult languages to learn, but one of the most fascinating ones due to its singularity. Its origins are unclear and like all languages, its words and expressions are filled with social and cultural implications.

    We are interested in understanding more about the Japanese language, especially in contrast to English and other European languages. We are also interested in how learners perceive information in Japanese and process it, how learning progresses, and what we can do in our teaching to facilitate learning.

    Suzuko Anai studied applied linguistics and has been teaching Japanese over 30 years, Her research interests range from e-learning, kanji learning for beginners to language education. She combines her research and teaching experiences to the development of the Let’s Read Japanese reading materials and is the Japanese editor of the series.

    Keiko Ikeshiro has studied Linguistics. Incorporating studies in Linguistics and wide experience in teaching, she is one of the creators of the Let’s Read Japanese series graded reading materials. Her current research interests include the effects and implications of reading this series on students’ performance and L2 acquisition.

    Hanako Fujino studies Japanese linguistics, second language acquisition and language teaching. Her recent research focuses on the process of learning Japanese grammar and how grammar should be taught to learners living outside of Japan.

  • Japanese studies

    In the field of Japanese studies, our areas of interest are Japanese cinema, Japanese religion, Japanese history and Japanese anthropology, Japanese Applied Linguistics, and Japanese Language Education.

    Alexander Jacoby studies Japanese cinema and popular culture. He is currently working on a book about the film director Hirokazu Koreeda, known for films such as Like Father, Like Son and Nobody Knows. His modules on manga, anime, and classical and contemporary Japanese cinema reflect his wide knowledge and expertise on the subject.

    John LoBreglio studies Japanese religious history, and his research and writings focus on the period from the mid-19th century through the Second World War. His modules include Japanese religionsThe Making of Modern JapanJapan: Myth and Reality and Advanced Japanese Reading and Translation.

    Louella Matsunaga specializes in Japanese anthropology. Her research interests include anthropological approaches to branding; gender in the workplace; the social negotiation of medical related death; Japanese religions outside Japan.

    Jason Danely studies care relationships in Japanese families and the urban communities. He is the author of Aging and Loss: Mourning and Maturity in Contemporary Japan, which examines the ways rituals of giving and grieving shape how individuals adapt to the challenges of old age. He lectures on a wide variety of topics in the social anthropology of Japan.