One Asia Forum Talk Series: “Lu Xun and Uchiyama Kanzō: Friendship in a Time of War”

Joshua A. Fogel 1

With guest speaker Professor Joshua A. Fogel (York University)

Thursday, 1 December, 2016
4:00 pm – 6:00pm
Room 604, Asian Centre

Open to the public. All are welcome.

In early fall of 1927 Lu Xun moved to Shanghai after an unsettling, peripatetic previous few years.  It also enabled him to live with his beloved Xu Guangping.  Several days after arriving he ventured to the Uchiyama Bookstore to buy some Japanese books, and on his second visit met the owner Uchiyama Kanzō.  The men soon became fast friends and remained so for the last nine years of Lu’s life.  Lu purchased over 1000 books from Uchiyama in these years, and a special rattan chair was reserved for his virtually daily visits.  Uchiyama fostered an environment for free-flowing conversation between Chinese and Japanese intellectuals, which many remembered with great affection.  Why a Japanese bookstore?  What was the nature of Lu Xun’s friendship with Uchiyama?  What was Lu’s overall view of Japan and Japanese culture?  How did Uchiyama end up spending over 30 years in Shanghai?  And, what was his view of China and Chinese society.  These are among the questions this talk hopes to penetrate.

Joshua A. Fogel 2About the speaker: Joshua Fogel was born in Brooklyn, New York but grew up in Berkeley, California.  He was an undergraduate at the University of Chicago and graduate student at Columbia University and Kyoto University.  He has taught at Harvard University (1981-88), University of California, Santa Barbara (1989-2005), and York University (2005-).  His work focuses on the cultural and political ties between China and Japan through the early 20th century.  His most recent works include: Maiden Voyage: The Senzaimaru and the Creation of Modern Sino-Japanese Relations (University of California Press, 2014); and Japanese Historiography and the Gold Seal of 57 C.E.: Relic, Text, Object, Fake (Brill, 2013).