Events: Kritika Kultura Lecture Series presents Alona U. Guevarra and Julz E. Riddle

February 09, 2018

Kritika Kultura, the international refereed journal of language, literary, and cultural studies of the Department of English, Ateneo de Manila University will host lectures on Haruki Murakami by Alona U. Guevarra and Julz E. Riddle. The lectures—which are co-organised by the Japan Foundation, Japanese Studies Program (AdMU), and Ateneo Institute for Literary Arts and Practices (AILAP)—are part of the kick-off event for the month-long Murakami Festival. The lectures are on Feb. 27, 2018, 5:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., at Leong Hall, Ateneo de Manila University. The event is open to the public.

About the lectures and resource persons

“Murakamiesque:  Understanding the Fiction of Murakami Haruki” by Alona U. Guevarra

One cannot speak of contemporary Japanese literature, or contemporary world literature for that matter, without mentioning Haruki Murakami.  He has become recognized as the leading Japanese fictionist of our age and occupies the unique position of being both a serious and popular author. This talk introduces us to a portrait of the elusive novelist whose distinct style, Murakamiesque, has captured the taste of a global following. To illustrate Murakamiesque four points will be addressed: Murakami’s notion of “fake” literature, his critique of the urban lifestyle, his explorations of dark themes and his  Murakami hero.

Alona U. Guevarra is an Assistant Professor at the Department of English of Ateneo de Manila University. She finished her graduate studies at University of the Philippines Diliman. Both her M.A. thesis and Ph.D. dissertation tackled the fiction of Murakami Haruki, and she teaches an elective that focused solely on this author. Her current research interests include environmental humanities and the contemporary literatures of Japan and Korea.

“A Place for Murakami in Filipino Contemporary Writing” by Julz E. Riddle

Murakami enjoys a wide readership among Filipino readers, yet his influence on contemporary writing in the Philippines is yet to be discussed. This talk is an observation of Murakami’s presence in existing works of fiction and in ways of engaging fiction writing in the Philippines, and an exploration of what could be the place of the Murakami-esque in Filipino fiction in terms of theme, style, and literary consumption.

Julz E. Riddle is the author of Bruhilda, a collection of short stories in Filipino published by Ateneo Literary Arts and Practices in 2017. She has taught literature and writing at Ateneo de Manila University since 2013.

About Kritika Kultura

Kritika Kultura is acknowledged by a host of Asian and Asian American Studies libraries and scholarly networks, and indexed in the MLA International Bibliography, Arts and Humanities Citation Index (Clarivate), Scopus, EBSCO, and the Directory of Open Access Journals. For inquiries about submission guidelines and future events, visit or email

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