From left, Yuichiro Imanishi, Laura E. Lyons, and Robert Huey at the signing ceremony.

East Asian Languages & Literatures Enters Prestigious Partnership

The College of Languages, Linguistics & Literature is pleased to announce that its Department of East Asian Languages & Literatures (EALL) has just partnered with one of Japan’s premier research institutes, the National Institute for Japanese Literature. NIJL is Japan’s first inter-university research institute for the humanities, founded in 1972.

The collaboration became official on February 16 with the signing of a Memorandum of Agreement by NIJL Director Yuichiro Imanishi, LLL Dean Laura E. Lyons, and EALL Chair Robert Huey. This agreement facilitates the ways in which each organization can share its resources, expertise, and talent.

One of the first fruits of this agreement is a collaboration that extends beyond the two signatory institutions. NIJL and EALL faculty and students will partner with representatives of UH Mānoa’s Department of Art and Art History, the UH libraries, and the Honolulu Museum of Art in a workshop that will examine rare 18th and 19th century Japanese books from the museum’s prized “Lane Collection,” with the ultimate goal of engaging in long-term research projects. The Consul General of Japan in Honolulu, Yasushi Misawa, graciously offered his residence to mark and celebrate the occasion.

This common sense, yet innovative, approach to working with organizations with overlapping goals has limitless potential. For example, the Honolulu Museum of Art can increase its scholarly audience, while the academic side can gain access to unique materials found in private organizations like the museum.

Collegiality between NIJL and EALL existed before this partnership was formalized. In fact, two PhD students were hosted at the institute in Tachikawa City while they conducted field research in Japan several years ago. The Memorandum of Agreement will cement this relationship. Sharing access to the other’s facilities will further expand benefits.

East Asian Languages & Literatures has earned a stellar academic reputation for its practical and inventive language teaching methods; its vast array of offerings; and its national flagship status in Chinese and Korean languages and the Language Roadmap. Even with these accolades, Dean Lyons considers this partnership a special one that adds a new dimension to the department, college, and university. “We are honored to officially and professionally collaborate with the National Institute for Japanese Literature and our campus and community colleagues, so that the people we all serve will benefit. It is truly an exciting time to be a part of this inter-university effort.”

Click here for a pdf of the press release.