International Science Fiction Symposium 2

July 20-27 | Hiroshima, Osaka, Nagoya, Tokyo

The ISFS2 Manifesto

In honor of the 50th anniversary of Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of Japan (SFWJ) in 2013, we are launching a series of International Science Fiction Symposia, which will take a new look at global negotiations between Western science fiction and Japanese science fiction. In the hope of reviving the spirit of the first International Science Fiction Symposium (ISFS) held in Japan in the summer of 1970, where Eastern bloc SF writers met their Western bloc colleagues for the first time during the Cold War, we are styling our series as ISFS2. However, while ISFS1 in 1970 could consider science fiction as offering insights into the techno-capitalist future of mankind based upon nuclear energy during the heyday of Japan's high-growth period, ISFS2 in 2013 must be keenly aware that the new century started with 9.11 terrorist attacks in 2001 and 3.11 multiple disasters in 2011, both of which radically damaged the infrastructure of our society. As we move deeper into the second decade of the 21st century, we feel it is getting harder and harder to distinguish between natural and man-made disasters. How, then, can we reconsider the future of the whole planet now? Is science fiction still capable of speculating on the future of literature? Is it possible for us to envision the cultural frontiers of humanity in an age of digital humanities? ISFS2 will undoubtedly provide us with excellent opportunities for grappling with these crucial problems.

The good news is that unlike the 1970s, the advent of "Cool Japan" in the 1990s produced a veritable bumper crop of Japanese science fiction in translation, accelerated by a number of ambitious publishers bringing the masterpieces of the genre into English or other world languages: Kurodahan Press, Vertical, Haikasoru, and the University of Minnesota Press, Fantasy Foundation (Taipei, Taiwan), Inostranka (Moscow, Russia), and Kana (Paris, France). After imbibing and re-appropriating the fruits of Western science fiction in translation for over fifty years, Japanese science fiction has now itself been translated into many foreign languages for two decades. With this global boom in Japanese science fiction, distinctions between Japanese science fiction and science fictional Japan are becoming ever more tenuous. This is another reason why it is important for us to have a truly international and fundamentally serious and constructive discussion at ISFS2.

Please join us ISFS2 between July 20 and 27, 2013!!!

ISFS2 Executive Committee:
Tsukasa Tohno, Mamoru Masuda, Takayuki Tatsumi, Mitsuyoshi Numano, Mari Kotani, Fumio Takano, Toya Tachihara, Junko Otobe, Hiroshi Shiota, Tomomi Tanioka, Kaoru Ichikawa, Shinsuke Ohchi, Yoichi Shimada, Kyoko Matsunaga, Macoto Kikuchi, Kunihiro Tsuji, Katsumi Satouchi, Yoshihiko Kihara, Katsura Hattori, Hideshi Yorimitsu, Ikuko Kubota, Yoshimi Yashiro, Tomomi Shiono, Tadashi Nagasawa, Hideki Watanabe, Reiichi Nakao, Fukuyuki En, Susumu Niijima, June Takahashi, Yasuko Nakaegawa, Min Onouchi, Norma Oyama, Kazue Harada, David Farnell, Dana Lewis

  • International Science Fiction Symposium 2 : "Towards the Frontiers of 21st Century Science Fiction: Nature, Culture, Future"
  • Guests : Paolo Bacigalupi, Pat Murphy, Yan Wu, Denis Taillandier
  • Sponsor : Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of Japan
  • Grant : The Japan Foundation
  • Cooperator : Hayakawa Publishers, Io Corporation, DWANGO Co., Ltd., The Japanese Association for Gender Fantasy and Science Fiction, Speculative Japan, Hiroshima Shudo University, Hiroshima University of Economics, Knowledge Capital Association, Osaka University Kaitokudo for the 21st Century, Sugiyama Women's University, Keio University, Meiji University, Josai International University, Fukushima University
  • Admission: Free, No reservation is needed.
  • Contact:
Title Time Place Moderator,Panelists
"Towards the Frontiers of 21st Century Science Fiction: Nature, Culture, Future"
July 20th, 2013
1F Hall,
Lecture Theaters 7,
Hiroshima Shudo University
Moderator : Takayuki Tatsumi
Panelists : Paolo Bacigalupi, Pat Murphy, Yan Wu, Denis Taillandier, Yoshio Aramaki, Fumio Takano
"Towards the Frontiers of 21st Century Science Fiction: Robot, AI, Creativity"
July 22nd, 2013
Knowledge Salon,
Knowledge Capital
Toastmaster : Mamoru Masuda
Moderator : Macoto Kikuchi
Panelists : Paolo Bacigalupi, Pat Murphy, Yan Wu, Denis Taillandier, Jouji Hayashi, Masayoshi Yasugi, Sayuri Ueda, Yusaku Kitano, Katsura Hattori
"Towards the Frontiers of 21st Century Science Fiction: Gender & Asia"
July 25th, 2013
Media Building Room G001,
Hoshigaoka Campus,
Sugiyama Women's University
Moderator : Tadashi Nagasawa, Hideki Watanabe
Panelists : Paolo Bacigalupi, Pat Murphy, Yan Wu, Denis Taillandier, Toya Tachihara, YOUCHAN, Shozo Katagiri
with special emphasis on translation
July 27th, 2013
Tokyo Kioi-cho Campus,
Josai International University
Toastmaster : Mamoru Masuda
Moderator : Takayuki Tatsumi, Dana Lewis
Panelists : Paolo Bacigalupi, Pat Murphy, Yan Wu, Denis Taillandier, Mitsuyoshi Numano, Fumio Takano, Susumu Niijima, Mamoru Masuda, Baku Yumemakura, Koshu Tani