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Faculty of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies

Event date: 
Monday, 1 March, 2021 - 20:00



Coed Revolution: The Gendered Dynamics of the Japanese New Left and its Legacies

In this talk based on my forthcoming book, I explore the meanings created by female participation in leftist campus-based protest in the 1960s in Japan, as young men and women attended universities together, battled police in the streets together, challenged political institutions, and paralyzed the higher education system. Young women involved in the student movement often imagined that it would offer them a rare chance to engage in activism away from gendered expectations and spaces, such as the home, and to participate as full equals with young men. And yet various dynamics – within the movement and in the interpretation of the movement within the mass media – often foreclosed such an imagination. Here I explore the tensions within this history and in the historiography that often memorializes the New Left as primarily “male” to uncover the gendered dynamics in the Japanese New Left, dynamics that help us understand postwar Japanese politics more generally, and the legacies of radical protest in particular.

Chelsea Szendi Schieder (Ph.D. Columbia University, East Asian Languages and Cultures, 2014) is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Economics at Aoyama Gakuin University in Tokyo, Japan. She writes about protest, women, violence, and Japan for academic and general audiences, with articles in Dissent, World Policy Journal, and The Funambulist. Her book on the gendered dynamics in the campus-based New Left in Japan, entitled Coed Revolution: The Female Student in the Japanese New Left, is forthcoming on Duke University Press (February 2021).