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Joshua Frydman

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Joshua Frydman

Assistant Professor, Japanese

Kaufman Hall 109

(405) 325-6181


Joshua Frydman is Assistant Professor of Japanese in the Department of Modern Languages, Literatures and Linguistics. His research focuses on poetry and the role of writing in Ancient Japan, namely the Asuka (538-710) and Nara (710-784) Periods. His current book project examines poetry inscriptions in vernacular Japanese on wood, pottery and stone, and how they fit into a larger understanding of the importation and initial development of writing and written literature in Japan during the 7th through 9th centuries CE. Dr. Frydman is also conducting research on Classical Chinese poetry and other literary inscriptions across East Asia during the first millennium CE. His academic interests include the development of writing systems (in East Asia and worldwide), and the role of transregional and global cultural interactions in the development of premodern societies as viewed through literature and art.

Dr. Frydman teaches courses on premodern and modern Japanese literature in translation, Classical Japanese, and the Japanese Capstone. He serves as Faculty Advisor to the Japanese Students' Association of the University of Oklahoma, and is an active and possibly too enthusiastic participant at many section and departmental events.

Selected Awards

Junior Faculty Summer Research Fellowship, College of Arts and Sciences, University of Oklahoma, 2017

Harvard University Reischauer Institute of Japanese Studies Post-Doctoral Fellowship, Harvard University, 2014-15

Japan Foundation Dissertation Research Grant, Nara (Japan), 2011-12

Recent Publications

“Before Gutenberg ~ Gutenberg izen no insatsubutsu” (Before Gutenberg ~ グーテンベルグ以前の印刷物) In: Botsman, Daniel V., et. al. Treasures from Japan in the Yale University Library. New Haven: Yale University Beinecke Rare Books Library, 2015. Page 11.

“Uta mokkan: bungaku to kōkogaku no kōsaten” (歌木簡:文学と考古学の交差点) In: Sumiya, Tsuneko, ed. Higashi ajia mokkangaku no tame ni. Nara: Nara daigaku. 2014. Pages 273-295.

Recent Conference Presentations and Invited Talks

“Robots of the Gods: Redeploying Ancient Myth in Contemporary Japan” South-Central Modern Language Association Annual Conference, November 3-6, 2016 in Dallas, Texas, USA

“The Archaeology Behind Ancient Japanese Poetry” Brown University East Asia Colloquium, May 4, 2016 in Providence, Rhode Island, USA

“Excavating Words: The Archaeology of Ancient Japanese Poetry” University of Oklahoma, January 28, 2016 in Norman, Oklahoma, USA

“Legendary Emperors, Lost Palaces: Naniwa in the Early Japanese Imagination” Reischauer Institute of Japanese Studies’ Japan Forum, September 26, 2014, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA

“Spell, Song or Salutation? The Naniwazu Poem on Inscribed Objects” 2014 Annual Meeting of the Association of Asian Studies, March 27-30, 2014 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA

“Yale YAJ bunko no hyakumantō to sono darani” (イェールYAJ文庫の百万塔とその陀羅尼) Yale University’s Beinecke Rare Books Library and the Tokyo University’s Historiographical Institute joint workshop, October 4, 2013 at Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut, USA