School of Modern Languages

Staff Profiles

Dr Gitte Marianne Hansen

Senior Lecturer in Japanese Studies


After finishing a BA in Japanese Studies and a MA in East Asia Studies from the University of Copenhagen, I studied and worked in Japan for five years as a teaching and research assistant to Professor Kato Norihiro at Waseda University. I then returned to Europe to undertake my PhD research at the University of Cambridge where I held a Gates Cambridge Trust scholarship. I joined the School of Modern Languages at Newcastle University in 2013.

In my research and teaching I look at contemporary Japanese culture and literature. I lead an AHRC funded project on Murakami Haruki (February 2017- July 2018)


Old Library Building 5.36

Office hours:

Tuesday 13:45-14:45 & Thursday 13:45-15:45 (semester 1)


Degree Programme Director for single honors Japanese and Chinese (TT12)


Guest Researcher, Nordic Institute of Asian studies, University of Copenhagen

Adjunct Researcher, Gender Studies Institute, Waseda University

External roles:

Committee member British Association for Japanese Studies (BAJS)

External examiner at Danish national universities



Current Research

I have an interest in character construction techniques and story repetition across genre, and in my research I look at diverse fiction, such as Murakami Haruki’s, Kanehara Hitomi’s and Kirino Natsuo’s literary works, as well as Miyazaki Hayao’s animation and artwork by Aida Makoto, among others. My approach is interdisciplinary and I enjoy working thematically.

Currently, I am leading the AHRC funded project, Genderign Murakami Haruki: Characters, Transmedial Productions and Contemporary Japan. The project aims to examine Murakami's literary works in terms of the processes of translation, transmedial production and the gendering of his characters.  I am particularly interested in his female characters and their changing position and diverse representation. Part of this project is scheduled to be published with Palgrave Mcmillan as Women in the world of Murakami Haruki (forthcoming 2018).

In 2016 I published my first monograph with Routledge: Femininity, Self-harm and Eating Disorders in Japan - Navigating contradiction in narrative and visual culture:

Research Interests

Contemporary Japanese literature, manga, anime, artwork, pop-culture, gender studies, feminist theory, normativity, eating disorders, self-harm, violence, character construction theory, Murakami Haruki.

Graduate Students

I welcome MA and PhD students who are interested in contemporary Japanese literature and other cultural forms such as manga, visual arts and TV drama and/or topics related to contemporary Japanese society such as gender and normativity. I very much encourage projects with an interdisciplinary approach.


Literary and cultural expression in contemporary Japan (JPN4006)

In this final year module we read authors such as Murakami Haruki, Yoshimoto Banana and Kanehara Hitomi in English with the purpose of understanding the meaning of the text from the perspective of contemporary Japanese society and contemporary Japanese cultural criticism. While the main focus is on literary works we also examine other cultural expressions such as film, anime or manga.

Contemporary Japanese popular culture (JPN2004)

While considering what cultural forms can be considered pop, in this module we study a range of Japanese popular culture such as manga, anime, TV drama and film.

Introduction to Japanese history and culture (JPN1005)

I teach the second half (semester 2) of this introductory module. The focus is on contemporary Japan--its culture and society. This module forms a foundation for all other modules offered on Japan.

Japanese language level C (JPN 4001)

In addition to textbook materials, in this module we read original literary texts by for example Murakami Haruki and articles published for a Japanese audience.