Comparative Studies of Societies and Cultures

This major targets a multifaceted range of subjects for research, including society, culture, language, and the arts. Whereas some areas of research focus on Japan, others focus on various other countries and regions around the world. While emphasizing the knowledge humanity has accumulated over the course of its long history, this major also turns an eye towards changes in modern culture and society.

While fostering researchers who can play a leading role in academic research, the program also aims to cultivate graduates who can apply an advanced level of specialized knowledge and skills for the benefit of society.

In the master’s program, we delineate areas of expertise in detail, so that we can meticulously support each student’s specific academic interests.


Japanese Language and Literature

The Department of Japanese Language and Literature is comprised of the three fields of classical literature, modern literature, and Japanese language studies. All three are connected, and our curriculum is designed to teach them with the broad and deep scholarship and methodology necessary to conduct research in the subject.

Asian Languages, Literature and Culture

Builds a basic foundation in Chinese language studies and research into Chinese literature. Almost every student continues on to a doctoral program, either at this university or another, but some do go on to work at corporations or other positions. Many students of this program study abroad at affiliated universities in China or Taiwan during their time here, and the instructional systems at these schools support studies in classical and modern literature as well as language studies. Students can also acquire specialized licenses for teaching the Chinese language (at middle or high school).

English and French Languages, Literatures and Cultures

This program is split into the English-speaking world and the French-speaking world, but students can also incorporate a comparative perspective into their research across multiple language regions. Research fields are broadly categorized into literature and linguistics, and subjects of research include the literature, culture, and language of each region.

Japanese as a Second Language

This program fosters experts in Japanese language education who can understand learners with a diverse range of linguistic and cultural backgrounds throughout global society, with the expertise and practical skills necessary to improve these learners’ communication proficiency as well as the required foundational theories and methods.


Philosophy is a discipline that debates the principles that rule everything by clarifying our understanding of the world. Students think for themselves about the problems that are currently being discussed, while validating each individual argument and practicing considering the clues written in classics through careful reading. Reading comprehension of the classics mainly focuses on Western philosophy in the early modern and modern periods, and the program cultivates an intellect with a broad perspective through the careful reading of original texts from Japan’s medieval period through early modern philosophy.

History and Art History

This program is comprised of courses in history centered on the pillars of Japanese, Asian, and Western history, as well as the art history of the West and Japan. The goal is integrated and multifaceted research, including broad analysis of written, molded, and visual materials. We welcome those who wish to attain the skills and knowledge and apply them for society inside and outside of Japan.

Cultural and Historical Studies

This program is comprised of courses that attempt a new form of interdisciplinary research targeting various phenomena in living culture from a new viewpoint. The department is centered on clothing and fashion culture research that seeks to clarify the history of Japanese and Western clothing, modern modes, and other topics, as well as comparative culture research into lifestyles with a focus on art; and the living culture that has been passed down through the ages from the standpoints of folklore and cultural anthropology. This program seeks students who are motivated to convey the study of living culture as a way to promote human understanding, both inside and outside Japan.


This program conducts interdisciplinary education and research in various fields including dance, sports and other forms of physical expression, the arts, ethnology, education, kinesiology, etc. Particular areas of research include dance education, dance arts, ethnic dance, kinesiology, and sports management. The goal is to foster specialized participants in society who have acquired theoretical and scientific knowledge based on the practice of dance and sports. A student who wishes to take these courses must have the proficiency and specialized knowledge in a foreign language necessary to write their master’s thesis.


This program is comprised of the two majors of musicology and performance studies, the latter of which includes both piano and vocal music specializations. The master’s thesis should seek to break ground in new knowledge that transcends the frameworks of Western or folk music, and the student’s musical skill must be at a high level of performance specialization. Both majors require sufficient linguistic proficiency to read and understand specialized English literature.