Welcome to the Floating World

Welcome to Ukiyo, the Floating World. I’m in final stages of relaunching my website furnished with an entirely new interface and a fresh approach which i’m thrilled to share with you.

Throughout 2020, beyond its obviously dreamlike texture of this unsettling year, I found myself returning to the University of Missouri to pursue a degree in Japanese and Literary studies, intent on a career in translation, comparative literature, and Japanese language. With this i’ve decided to revamp my website as mosaic of musings from my research. This ranges from the artistic and cultural movements of Japan and East Asia throughout history. And what an immense privilege to share this journey with you. Until then explore the archive and be sure to sign up to my mailing list so we can stay in contact.

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But wait, WHAT even is this “Floating World” you speak of and how do we get there?
To that I say patience, patience. Here’s a slippery spoiler: The “Floating World” is a reference to the fleeting, airy space which at once expresses joy and sorrow. Ukiyo, or “Floating World” comes from the Japanese kanji, but when read aloud the word can mean both floating and/or sorrow it’s all in the context! Oh, how very Japanese.

OK, wait. But that’s still not very clear. Well, that’s the point. Think of the bohemians of 19th century paris, the cafe culture of 20th century artists, or the folk movements throughout America. Most artistic movements bundle together this ebb and flow of hopeful optimism with dark cynicism. For it truly was the best of times. And it was the worst of times. Ukiyo is many things. A concept. A lifestyle. But most importantly a artistic, literary, and theatrical movement. A time and place where caution is thrown to the wind, passions embraced.

Welcome to the Floating World of Ukiyo. But we’re not going to stop here, oh, no, we’ll encounter literary and artistic movements from throughout the brilliant minds of East Asia. Great and minor, from modern to the ends of memory, time, space.

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3 Comments

    1. Truly? I hope so. I’m only a student seeking others to appreciate the literary and artistic legacy of Japan and East Asia. The artists of which contribute so much to the modern world, and so much to the values and aesthetics of the West too. So much of what’s valued in pop culture is directly influenced by the “Floating World” and yet few seem to understand the impact.

      Wishing you a Happy New Years!

      Like

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