From Japanism to Anime: On the History of Nietzsche's Reception in Japan
The World of the Orient
Від японізму до аніме: з історії рецепції Ніцше в Японії
The article attempts to analyze the history of the perception of Friedrich Nietzsche's philosophy in Japan, its impact on Japanese philosophical thought and culture in general, from the first acquaintance with his works to the present. The first to introduce Nietzsche's name into Japanese philosophical discourse was a graduate of the Kiev Theological Academy, Konishi Masutarō in 1893, and the first Japanese translations appeared in 1902-1911. However, some Japanese intellectuals had previously
... ecome acquainted with Nietzsche's works in original or in translations into European languages. First of all, the article deals with the first stage of the reception of Nietzsche's ideas in Japan, which was characterized by discussions on moral issues. The central figure of this stage is Takayama Chōgyū. Further attention is given to Nietzsche's interpretations in the writings of the philosophers of the Kyoto School such as Nishida Kitarō, Vatsuji Tetsurō, Miki Kiyoshi, Nishitani Keiji, and the works of prominent writers such as Mori Ōgai and Mishima Yukio. The peculiarity of the modern stage of Nietzsche's reception in Japan is the emergence of manga, which somehow deal with his ideas. The analysis shows that Nietzsche's ideas have become an integral part of modern Japanese culture, both elitist and mass (manga, anime, etc.). These ideas were taken directly by the Japanese from the German philosophical culture -either from German professors R. von Keber and K. Florenz, who taught at Tokyo Imperial University, or through training in Germany, such as Anesaki Masaharu, Inoue Tetsujirō, and Mori Ōgai. An important role was played by Nietzsche's translations into Japanese, the first of which was the translation of the book "Also sprach Zarathustra" by Ikuta Chōkō (1911). The article identifies the kind of "transmission lines" of interest to Nietzsche: from Mori Ōgai and Ikuta Chōkō to Satō Haruo, and then to Mishima; or from Tobari Sin'ichiro to Nishida Kitarō, and then to Watsuji Tetsurō, Miki Kiyoshi and Nishitani Keiji. The peculiarity of the Japanese reception of Nietzsche's philosophy is its reading through the prism of Buddhism: in this way, the Nietzschean-Buddhist synthesis can be regarded as the main contribution of Japanese philosophers to the Nietzsche Studies.