“Over the last decade we have witnessed the rise of the term ‘contents’ (kontentsu) and its most frequent iteration, ‘contents business’, in Japanese news media, governmental white papers, business manuals, and books on the entertainment industry. Sometimes referring to simply to digital information, sometimes to the works of anime, manga, and film, the precise meaning of the term remains ambiguous. Nonetheless, the term has become key to the current state of media convergence in Japan. This talk offers a preliminary approach to the question,’What is contents?’ by sketching the media historical background against which the term emerges, and offering one way of grasping its elusive meaning via a detour into the Japanese advertising world of the 1980s.”
Marc Steinberg is assistant professor of Film Studies at Concordia University, Montreal. He is the author of Anime’s Media Mix: Franchising Toys and Characters in Japan (University of Minnesota Press, 2012), and has published essays in Japan Forum, Animation: An Interdisciplinary Journal, Journal of Visual Culture, Theory, Culture & Society, Mechademia, and Canadian Journal of Film Studies.
DATE: February 11, 2013
LOCATION: Friedl 225, Duke