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Tag: Anne of Green Gables

Anne-Mania Goes Global

Anne-mania goes global; Canada’s most famous literary export is being feted around the world

The Japanese, on the other hand, emphasize Annes almost mystical worship of nature and Montgomerys lyrical descriptions of the Island because those aspects of the novel tie in with Shinto—the native religion of Japan, which includes a belief in spirits associated with a particular place.

There are other reasons Anne appeals to Japanese fans.
The Japanese translation was published in 1952, when the horrors of the Second World War were still fresh and there were many orphans.

Anne also provides a complex model of femininity that resonates for Japanese women, according to Irene Gammel, author of Looking for Anne: How Lucy Maud Montgomery Dreamed Up a Literary Classic. “Anne is tempestuous, she has outbursts. Yet at the same time she is a good girl.”

Constrained by traditional gender roles, Anne’s mostly female Japanese fans appreciate the way Montgomery’s heroine “negotiates with people living in a narrow minded community which reminds them of their own society,” notes Japanese-born, Toronto-based Yuka Kajihara, a founding member of the L.M. Montgomery Research Group.

Centenary Events in Japan

The following information is provided to us by Yuka Kajihara, who invites interested persons to contact her directly.

Whether you are aware or not, there are numerous of Anne-related events happening in Japan! Recently I was asked to provide a resource on this matter by a journalist from Canwest News Service and I made a brief list of it:

  • The exhibition entitled “Hanako Muraoka and Akage no An” is held at International Institute for Children’s Literature in Osaka, Japan between May and July. Because the first translators of Anne of Green Gables is Hanako Muraoka, there is no way to talk about Anne without her.
  • The nationwide exhibition entitled “Anne of Green Gables: L.M. Montgomery’s beloved PEI” starts in June until next June 2009. The display includes Magog (from Robert Montgomery), a few pages of manuscript from AoGG, LMM’s crazy quilt and more.
  • Embassy of Canada in Tokyo supports some of the events on “Anne”, such as Gekidan Shiki’s musical Anne of Green Gables:
  • Hanako Muraoka’s biography Anne’s Cradle written by her grand-daughter Eri Muraoka is published in June 2008. The cover image shows Anne & Green Gables: . Nowadays, the name of Hanako Muraoka (poet, translator, Children’s writer, radio personality) is popular only because of her translation of the Anne series.
  • In celebrating 100th anniversary of Anne, newly revised edition of Akage no An (translated by Hanako Muraoka, revised by Mie Muraoka who is another grand-daughter of Hanako’s) is published by Shinchosha, Tokyo. In this edition, Mie added the portions that Hanako had omitted to translate in some unknown reasons.
  • Budge Wilson’s Before Green Gables is translated/published by Shinchosha in June. The Japanese title is Hello Anne.
  • Nippon Hoso Kyokai (NHK) broadcast a special program “Welcome to the Anne’s World” in January. This one show was rebroadcast 2 more times due to popular demand. It includes a letter by Luella and some photographs of Luella with the letter that Jason took. You can see the pictures, and as well as pictures of Luella’s. One is of lover’s lane given to her by LMM and the other is a picture of Luella as a baby being held by LMM. See Some of you might find it funny that we actually took these photos in a sushi bar in Yorkville. Luella’s favourite place.
  • NHK also broadcast a tree-month long (from April to June) English conversation program “The journey to Akage no An.” I heard that the textbook of this program has sold more than 130,000 copies so far. That figure is incredible! Anne is not only a gateway to learn PEI but also to learn English to Japanese audience. The staff visited PEI last Summer.
  • There are many other Anne-related things happening in Japan: smaller production size of musicals, another exhibitions of Anne and many other publications. A scholarly book on Anne to which I contributed will be published soon. A short biography of L.M. Montgomery for Juvenile readers by Miki Okuda was published in March. And the Nippon Animation Co., LTD sells a boxed set of DVD entitled, “Akage no An: the DVD Memorial Box.”
  • As you probably already know, the first translator of AOGG into Japanese is Hanako Muraoka (1893-1968). Muraoka once worked for a publisher Kyobunkan in Tokyo which was originally established by Methodist missionaries from the USA, in 1885. This is the place Muraoka first met Canadian missionary Miss Loretta L. Shaw. In 1939, before leaving Japan due to the WWII, Shaw gave a copy of Anne of Green Gables to Muraoka as a keepsake. Kyobunkan is now having special events in order to celebrate Hanako’s work & Anne’s 100th anniversary.
  • June 21 – July 16. “Akage no An This exhibition is focusing on Muraoka’s work and displays books translated by her, including L.M. Montgomery, Louisa May Alcott, Eleanor Porter and more. Along with these books, photographs of PEI taken by well known photographer Kazutoshi Yoshimura are displayed. and the work of Hanako Muraoka” at Nalnia Hall, Kyobunkan, in Tokyo.
  • June 29. 2-3 p.m. Eri Muraoka Gallery Talk at Narnia Hall, Kyobunkan. Eri is Hanako’s grand-daughter who recently published a biography of Hanako. Her talk is entitled (loosely translated) “The very first Akage no An: a promise to Miss Shaw, editor of Kyobunkan.”

Anne of Green Gables: A Literary Icon at 100: Exhibit Opening & Symposium

SATURDAY, MAY 31, 2008
Lillooet Room (Exhibit) & Dobson Room (Symposium)
Irving Barber Learning Center
University of British Columbia Library

Organized by
Ryerson University’s Modern Literature & Culture Research Center
With the Support of the Social Sciences and Research Council of Canada and the International Canadian Studies Centre at UBC

These May 31 events mark the opening of the exhibition Anne of Green Gables: A Literary Icon at 100, May 31 to June 8, 2008. The exhibit takes place in the Historic Lillooet Room, Irving Barber Learning Center; the exhibit symposium takes place in the adjoining Dobson Room. Both the Exhibit and the exhibit symposium are open to the public.

Exhibit Symposium Program

10:30 AM – 12:00 PM, DOBSON ROOM
Anne of Green Gables: A Literary Icon at 100: Leading and Emerging Scholars Reflect on Anne of Green Gables in the Centenary Year / Chair: Irene Gammel

This round table of scholars is dedicated to taking stock of Canada’s most famous literary icon at its centenary anniversary, L.M. Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables. What is behind the popularity of the novel? What is its current global value and status? What is its future in Canada and the world? Each speaker, a recognized or emerging scholar, has five minutes to make a brief statement, which can be personal and scholarly, before we open to general discussion and audience question and answer.

Participants include:

  • Deirdre Baker, University of Toronto
  • Dr. Cecily Devereux, University of Alberta
  • Dr. Janice Fiamengo, University of Ottawa
  • Dr. Irene Gammel, Ryerson University
  • Dr. Carole Gerson, Simon Fraser University
  • Dr. Benjamin Lefebvre, University of Alberta, L. M. Montgomery Research Group
  • Dr. Mavis Reimer, Canada Research Chair in the Culture of Childhood, University of Winnipeg
  • Dr. Margaret Steffler, Trent University, L. M. Montgomery Society of Ontario.

12:15 AM – 1:00 AM, DOBSON ROOM
Looking for Anne; Exhibit Opening and Booksigning: With Curator and Author Irene Gammel

The exhibit opening talk in Dobson Room is followed by an exhibit tour and book signing by Irene Gammel in Lillooet Room. Irene Gammel’s book Looking for Anne: How Lucy Maud Montgomery Dreamed Up a Literary Classic (Key Porter) accompanies the exhibit as the catalogue. Refreshments will be served.

1:00 PM – 3:30 PM
Guided Tours of the Exhibit in Lillooet

4:00 4:30 PM Anne of Green Gables: New Directions
A Workshop Co-hosted with the University of Toronto Press

A workshop for contributors to the collection of essays edited by Irene Gammel and tentatively titled Anne of Green Gables: New Directions (papers due August 15). Informal question and answer format.

4:45 PM – 6:00 PM, DOBSON ROOM
Anne of Green Gables: New Directions at 100
ACCUTE: Association for Canadian College and University Teachers of English
Organizers/Chairs: Irene Gammel and Benjamin Lefebvre

Alexander MacLeod (Saint Mary’s), “On the Road from Bright River: Shifting Social Space in Anne of Green Gables”

Jason Nolan (Ryerson) “Anne of the Undead: Changeling Child and the Uncanny in Avonlea”

Alison Matthews David and Kimberly Wahl (Ryerson) “Taste and Transformation: Negotiating Codes of Fashion in Avonlea”

6:00 – 7:00 PM Exhibit Tour
Lillooet Room

More News on Gammel Book and Exhibit

The “Anne of Green Gables: A Literary Icon at 100” exhibit is now open to the public at Spadina Museum: Historic House and Gardens (285 Spadina Road, open Tuesday to Sunday, 12:00 – 5:00 PM) until September 2. Be sure to also check out Irene Gammel’s blog for more information and updates. Also, the opening reception for the exhibit will coincide with the book launch for Looking for Anne on 1 May 2008 between 5:30 and 7:30 PM at Spadina Museum: Historic House and Gardens. If you care to attend, please send a message to Finally, Key Porter Books has launched its own website devoted to Looking for Anne, which includes a downloadable extract from the book, an interview with the author, little-known facts, and reviews.

UPDATE: The Key Porter Books website is no longer online.

Announcement: Anne of Green Gables Panel at ACCUTE Congress 2008

The following panel is scheduled for ACCUTE‘s 2008 Congress at the University of British Columbia:

Saturday, 31 May 2008

Anne of Green Gables: New Directions at 100

Location: Dobson Room, Irving K. Barber Learning Centre, UBC Library

Organizers/Chairs: Irene Gammel and Benjamin Lefebvre

  • Alexander MacLeod (Saint Mary’s), “On the Road from Bright River: Shifting Social Space in Anne of Green Gables
  • Jason Nolan (Ryerson), “Anne of the Undead: Changeling Child and the Uncanny in Avonlea”
  • Alison Matthews David and Kimberly Wahl (Ryerson), “Taste and Transformation: Negotiating Codes of Fashion in Avonlea”

For more information please contact the co-chairs: Irene Gammel <> and Benjamin Lefebvre <>.

Poland Joins Worldwide Celebrations of the Birth Centenary of Anne Shirley

From Polskie Radio

Poland joins worldwide celebrations of the birth centenary of Anne Shirley, the heroine of a series of books by the Canadian author Lucy Maud Montgomery.
Anne of Green Gables, the first book of the series, was published on 20 June 1908.
The Krakow-based Wydawnictwo Literackie Literary Publishers, the Polish publisher of Montgomery’s books, organizes a special event on the eve of the anniversary.
It also sponsors a literary festival which comprises workshops for teachers, several competitions for children and a major exhibition at the Jagiellonian Library March-June.
The Literary Publishers is also to bring out a Polish translation of Mollie Gillen’s biography of Lucy Maud Montgomery. Ann of Green Gables has been translated into 36 languages. mk

For those who don’t know Mollie, who is a friend of ours, please check out Dr Mollie Gillen’s Homepage that Yuka runs.