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Professor Paul Schalow's interest in East Asia began while living in Taiwan as a boy and developed further after he spent a year in Japan as a Rotary International high school exchange student. He earned his Ph.D. in Japanese literature at Harvard University in 1985 and began teaching at Rutgers in 1988. He teaches courses on A-Bomb literature and film, Japanese literature in translation, and a graduate seminar on The Tale of Genji. His current research project addresses male interiority and self-representation in a Heian courtier's diary written in Sino-Japanese. 


  • Ph.D. in Japanese Literature, Harvard University, Department of East Asian Languages and
    Civilizations, 1985
  • M.A. in Regional Studies-East Asia, Harvard University, Department of East Asian Languages
    and Civilizations, 1979
  • B.A. in Japanese and Linguistics, Hampshire College, Amherst, Massachusetts, 1977

Areas of Specialization

  • Classical and Early-modern Japanese Literature
  • Japanese Women’s Writing
  • Japanese Literature and the Atomic Bomb


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Selected Articles and Book Chapters

  • “Auschwitz and Hiroshima: Economies of Victimization, Communities of Empathy,” in Essays in Honor of Irmela Hijiya-Kirschnereit, eds. Judit Árokay, Verena Blechinger-Talcott, and Hilaria Gössmann (Munich: Iudicium, 2008), 409-426.
  • “Figures of Worship: Responses to Onnagata on the Kabuki Stage in Seventeenth-Century Japanese Vernacular Prose,” in Transvestism and the Onnagata Traditions in Shakespeare and Kabuki, edsMinoru Fujita and Michael Shapiro (Kent: Global Oriental, 2006), 59-70.
  • “Five Portraits of Male Friendship in the Ise Monogatari,Harvard Journal of Asiatic Studies 60.2 (2000): 445-488.
  • “Theorizing Sex/Gender in Early Modern Japan: Kitamura Kigin’s Maidenflowers and Wild Azaleas,Japanese Studies 18.3 (1998): 247-263.
  • "The Invention of a Literary Tradition of Male Love: Kitamura Kigin’s Iwatsutsuji,Monumenta Nipponica 48.1 (1993): 1-31.
  • "Spiritual Dimensions of Male Beauty in Japanese Buddhism,” in Religion, Homosexuality, and Literature, eds. Michael L. Stemmeler & José Ignacio Cabezón (Las Colinas, Texas: Monument Press, 1992), 75-94. Reprinted in Queer Dharma: Voices of Gay Buddhists, ed. Winston Leyland (San Francisco: Gay Sunshine Press, 1998), 107-124.
  • "Male Love in Early Modern Japan: A Literary Depiction of the ‘Youth’,” in Hidden From History: Reclaiming the Gay and Lesbian Past, eds. Martin Duberman, Martha Vicinus, & George Chauncey (New York: New American Library, 1989), 118-128.

Courses Taught

  • Global East Asia (01:098:250)
  • A-Bomb Literature and Film in Japan (01:565:215)
  • The Samurai Tradition in Japanese Literature and Film (01:565:320)

  • Awarded the 1990 Japan U.S. Friendship Commission Prize for the Translation of Japanese Literature, for Ihara Saikaku’s The Great Mirror of Male Love (Stanford University Press, 1990).
  • Nominated for the 2007 Warren-Brooks Prize for Outstanding Literary Criticism, for A Poetics of Courtly Male Friendship in Heian Japan (University of Hawaii Press, 2007).

Professional Affiliations at Rutgers


  • Griffis Prize 2022-2023

      Best Undergraduate Term Paper / Media Project on Asia during the Academic Year 2022-2023                                  Open to all undergraduate students at Rutgers University    An award of $250 will be made in May, 2023, in each...
  • A Cultural History of the City in Korea

    The Hidden Door, the Unclimbable Stairs, and the Broken Lightbulb:A Cultural History of the City in Korea. The wild success enjoyed by Bong Joon Ho and his recent film Parasite (2019) and also Park...
  • 2022 CLS Application is Now Open - Fully Funded Study Abroad Opportunity

    The CLS Program is a program of the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs: The application for the 2022 Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) Program is now open! We...



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