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Dr Angelika Koch

Dr Angelika Koch

DEAS Research Associate, Faculty of Asian & Middle Eastern Studies


I completed a Master in Japanese Studies and a Bachelor in English Literature at the University of Vienna, with periods of study at Università Ca’ Foscari in Venice and Meiji University in Tokyo. My Master’s thesis focused on the depiction of male-male homosexuality in comic literature of the Edo period. I then studied for a PhD in Japanese History at the University of Cambridge, during which I also received a six-month Japan Foundation Fellowship to pursue research in Japan at Ritsumeikan University. My PhD thesis Sexual Healing. Sexuality, Health and the Body in Early Modern Japan (1600-1868) explored the depiction of sexuality in medical and health discourses of the Edo period.

My current research focuses on the history of time in the everyday life of Edo Japan. I am a member of the collaborative project Timing Day and Night: Timescapes in Premodern Japan, based at the Faculty of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies (, and was convener of the international workshop Timing Day and Night held at the Faculty of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies in April 2015.

I have been teaching and supervising for the course Modern Japanese Society, lecturing in particular on issues of gender and sexuality in modern and contemporary Japan, as well as for the Introduction to East Asian History. Moreover, I am currently supervisor for the Mphil in Gender Studies at the University of Cambridge.

Subject groups/Research projects

Japanese Studies:

Research Interests

My broader research interest is the cultural history of the Edo period, specifically the history of gender and sexuality, history of medicine and history of time.


Key Publications



(forthcoming 1/2017)Nightless Cities. Timing the Pleasure Quarters in Early Modern Japan’, Kronoscope: The International Journal for the Study of Time 17/1 (Special Issue Timing Day and Night in Japan’s Past, ed. by Raji Steineck and Brigitte Steger)

2013 ‘Sexual Healing. Regulating Male Sexuality in Edo Books on Nurturing Life’, International Journal of Asian Studies 10/2, pp. 143-170
2013 "Gender Matters", Brigitte Steger and Angelika Koch (eds) Manga Girl Seeks Herbivore Boy. Studies on Japanese Gender Identities from the University of Cambridge. LIT Publisher.
2011 ‘Between the Back and the Front: Male Love in Humorous Tales of the Edo Period’,Vienna Graduate Journal of East Asian Studies 1, pp. 1-32
2002 "Unter den Bäumen stehen. Der etwas andere japanische Fußball" (Standing under trees. A different kind of Japanese football), Die Universitä



(forthcoming) Kudō Akira ‘Mobilizing the Masses: The Japanese Army’s Studies of Germany during the First World War’, Jan Schmidt and Katja Schmidtpott (eds.) The East Asian Dimension of the First World War. The ‘German-Japanese War’ and China, 1914-1919. Frankfurt, New York: Campus


Media, Propaganda and Politics in Twentieth Century Japan 
[joint translation project coordinated by Dr Barak Kushner, Lecturer in Modern Japanese History, Cambridge University]

Conference Talks


'Fuyajō no jūnitoki. Kinsei yūri ni okeru jikan ishiki’, Japan Foundation Alsace Japan Research Seminar, Kientzheim (France)

4/2015 'Nightless Cities: Timing the Pleasure Quarters in Edo Japan', International Workshop Timing Day and Night: Timescapes in Premodern Japan, University of Cambridge, Faculty of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies, April 15-17
5/2012 "Informing Sexuality and Health in Edo Japan", 8th PhD Workshop of the European Association of Japanese Studies, Newcastle University,30 May-2 June
4/2012 "Undesirable Desires. Regulating Male Sexuality in Edo books on Nurturing Life", European Social Sciences History Conference, Glasgow
8/2012 Talk on the Panel "Tokugawa Medicine at the Crossroads" 13th International Conference of the European Association of Japanese Studies, Tallinn, August 24-27
2/2011 ‘Don’t Waste the Oil in the Lamp. Sexuality and the Healthy Body in Edo-period Writings on Nurturing Life (yōjō 養生)’ (Paper presented at the 14th Annual Harvard East Asia Society Conference, Cambridge/Mass., February 25-27, 2011)
2/2011 ‘The Pleasures of Knowledge. Sex Information in the Edo Period’ (Paper presented atColumbia University’s 20th Annual Graduate Student Conference on East Asia, New York, February 4-5, 2011)

Media Appearances 

1/2015 ‘Why Don’t Japanese Men Like Having Sex?’ The Telegraph
2/2013 'Herbivore Boys and Other Fault Lines in Japan's Gender Crisis' University of Cambridge Research News