Bachelor Japanists: Japanese Aesthetics and Western Masculinities by Christopher ReedBachelor Japanists: Japanese Aesthetics and Western Masculinities by Christopher Reed

Bachelor Japanists: Japanese Aesthetics and Western Masculinities

byChristopher Reed

Paperback | November 15, 2016

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Challenging clichés of Japanism as a feminine taste, Bachelor Japanists argues that Japanese aesthetics were central to contests over the meanings of masculinity in the West. Christopher Reed draws attention to the queerness of Japanist communities of writers, collectors, curators, and artists in the tumultuous century between the 1860s and the 1960s.

Reed combines extensive archival research; analysis of art, architecture, and literature; the insights of queer theory; and an appreciation of irony to explore the East-West encounter through three revealing artistic milieus: the Goncourt brothers and other japonistes of late-nineteenth-century Paris; collectors and curators in turn-of-the-century Boston; and the mid-twentieth-century circles of artists associated with Seattle's Mark Tobey. The result is a groundbreaking integration of well-known and forgotten episodes and personalities that illuminates how Japanese aesthetics were used to challenge Western gender conventions. These disruptive effects are sustained in Reed's analysis, which undermines conventional scholarly investments in the heroism of avant-garde accomplishment and ideals of cultural authenticity.

Christopher Reed is professor of English and visual culture at the Pennsylvania State University. He is the author of many books, including Art and Homosexuality: A History of Ideas (2011) and Bloomsbury Rooms: Modernism, Subculture, and Domesticity (2004).
Title:Bachelor Japanists: Japanese Aesthetics and Western MasculinitiesFormat:PaperbackDimensions:440 pagesPublished:November 15, 2016Publisher:Columbia University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0231175752

ISBN - 13:9780231175753


Table of Contents

A Note on Names and TermsAcknowledgmentsIntroduction1. Originating Japanism: Fin-de-Siècle Paris2. Bachelor Brahmins: Turn-of-the-Century Boston3. Sublimation and Eccentricity in the Art of Mark Tobey: Seattle at MidcenturyConclusion: On the End of JapanismNotesBibliographyIndex

Editorial Reviews

Meticulously researched and eloquently written, Bachelor Japanists brings the values of queer theory to bear on both its objects of study and the writing of art history. Focusing on how diverse japonismes provided opportunities to unlearn the West, Reed's immediately important book reconstructs and illuminates the sometimes outrageous, sometimes slyly implicit "structures of dissent" they inspired and facilitated: alternative forms of beauty, collecting, domesticity, and belonging.