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Japanese Studies

Welcome to the UCLA Library Guide for Japanese Studies. This guide presents both introductory and in-depth information for Japan-related research.

Media Studies

About Media Studies 

Media studies interests in Japan have grown considerably in the past few decades. This guide will focus primarily on anime and manga, although scholarly sources on film and literature also exist. It will also offer some direction as to where begin your search if you are interested in these topics.

If you're interested in Japanese cultural / media studies generally, the Yanai Initiative is a great place to check out. They hold relevant events on campus and provide funding for graduate students doing research in the field. They are a great resource for UCLA students seeking to learn about contemporary Japanese culture.

Another place to jumpstart your academic search is They provide a litany of scholarly papers written on a myriad of topics related to anime and manga studies. 

If you're interested in animation more broadly, you may also try the animation special collections library guide. Many individual cels and materials related to the production of animation can be viewed in Library Special Collections. 

For scholars who are searching for more traditional types of media such as newspapers and journals, there are a myriad of resources spread across the guide that link to various media-related databases. Click the "General Media" tab for more information.

For scholars interested in historiographical sources or historical media generally, the Japanese studies guide has a number of excellent places to search. If you are just getting started with media studies, the critical media literacy guide may be a better place to start.

  • Click here for the Japanese studies library guide list of newspaper archives.
  • Click here for the Japanese studies web resources list. 
  • Click here for the Japanese studies library guide list of journals, magazines, and other ephemeral sources.

Below, you will find a brief list of links to databases and other useful media-related resources.


Here is a short list of journals that frequently engage in discussion on Japanese media studies projects. There are literature reviews as well as original publications. Below, you can find databases that will give you access to even more information on a wide variety of related subjects— try searching for your interest in any of them. JSTOR is particularly useful as a starting point.

Once you find a good source, make sure to review where else it points (such as references/bibliographies) to in order to find more related materials.

Click here for a good list of sample searches in the Cinema and Media Studies section of Oxford Bibilographies.

In UC Search, some good keywords to use are "メディア" and "Japan 20th century Mass Media History".

Relevant Call Numbers: 

  • Telecommunication: HE8689
  • Periodicals, mass media: PN56, P96, P87
  • Broadcasting, Radio, TV, Films: PN1990

You can search for important Japan-related researchers on ResearchMap. Click here for media studies related researchers.

Here is a generalized list of important figures for Japanese media studies. 

For those interested in video games, here are a few resources to get you started.

First, the Powell Community Collections have a wide variety of materials related to video games, sci-fi, fantasy, and other general media studies topics of interest. For those interested in anime studies, many issues of Mechademia can be found there. 

UCLA also offers consoles and games for use. Click here to view a list of games, and here to view what kinds of consoles are available.

Here is the game design library guide.