Double visions, double fictions: The Doppelgänger in Japanese film and literature

Baryon Tensor Posadas

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

2 Scopus citations


A fresh take on the dopplegänger and its place in Japanese film and literature-past and present Since its earliest known use in German Romanticism in the late 1700s, the word Dopplegänger (double-walker) can be found throughout a vast array of literature, culture, and media. This motif of doubling can also be seen traversing historical and cultural boundaries. Double Visions, Double Fictions analyzes the myriad manifestations of the dopplegänger in Japanese literary and cinematic texts at two historical junctures: the interwar period of the 1920s and 1930s and the present day. According to author Baryon Tensor Posadas, the doppelgänger marks the intersection of the historical impact of psychoanalytic theory, the genre of detective fiction in Japan, early Japanese cinema, and the cultural production of Japanese colonialism. He examines the doppelgänger’s appearance in the works of Edogawa Rampo, Tanizaki Jun’ichiro, and Akutagawa Ryunosuke, as well as the films of Tsukamoto Shin’ya and Kurosawa Kiyoshi, not only as a recurrent motif but also as a critical practice of concepts. Following these explorations, Posadas asks: What were the social, political, and material conditions that mobilized the desire for the dopplegänger? And how does the dopplegänger capture social transformations taking place at these historical moments?.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationDouble Visions, Double Fictions
Subtitle of host publicationThe Doppelganger in Japanese Film and Literature
PublisherUniversity of Minnesota Press
Number of pages255
ISBN (Electronic)9781452956336
ISBN (Print)9781517902636
StatePublished - Jan 1 2018

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© 2018 by the Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.


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