Sayumi Takahashi Harb
Assistant Professor of Japanese
Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania
Modern Japanese literature
Japanese film and visual culture in transnational contexts
Asian American literature
Pre-modern poetics and literati culture
Multimedia and word/image studies
Sayumi Takahashi Harb received her Ph.D. in Comparative Literature and Literary Theory with a specialization in Women’s Studies from the University of Pennsylvania in 2007. Her doctoral dissertation titled “Discipline and Publish: Intermedia Poetics of Gendered Resistance in Otagaki Rengetsu, Yoko Ono and Theresa Hak Kyung Cha,” examined the works of three Asian women writer/artists and the ways in which they blend text, image and material to inspire a re-imagination of certain stereotyped notions of identity.
Before joining Connecticut College, Harb taught courses in Japanese language, literature, and film at the University of the South, where she served for two years as Chair of Japanese Studies.
Her courses at Connecticut College include "After-lives and Apocalypses: Postwar Japanese Cinema," “Word and Image in Japanese Poetry,” "Advanced Japanese," "Heroes and Heroines in Japanese Literature and Film," "Shodo: the Art of Japanese Brushwork" and "Screening East Asia through Masterpieces of Transnational Cinema."
Her areas of specialization and interest include gender studies, pre-modern poetics and literati culture, multimedia and word/image studies, modern Japanese literature, Japanese film and visual culture in transnational contexts, as well as Asian American literature.
Harb is currently writing a book about the 19th century Japanese Buddhist literati nun poet/painter/potter/calligrapher, Otagaki Rengetsu (1790-1875).
She is currently an Associate-in-Research at the Center for East Asian Studies at Yale University, as well as a Harvard University Reischauer Institute for Japanese Studies Associate in Research. She has been a Visiting Faculty Fellow at the Associated Kyoto Program at Doshisha University in Kyoto, Japan.
Harb has served on the Committee for Academic Standing, and is currently a member of the Connecticut College Fulbright Selection Committee, the Environmental Model Committee, the Foreign Language Caucus and the Film Studies Advisory Committee.
In addition to her scholarly pursuits, Harb enjoys playing the violin and listening to music of all kinds, cooking and eating (mostly eating) healthy meals, shodo (Japanese brush penmanship), capoeira, learning Arabic and playing with her son Kinan.