Penn Calendar Penn A-Z School of Arts and Sciences University of Pennsylvania

Jolyon Thomas

2017-18 Planning Committee
East Asian Languages and Civilizations

Jolyon Thomas is an Assistant Professor of East Asian Languages & Civilizations who specializes in the religions of modern Japan. He has investigated relationships between religion and illustrated media in his 2012 book Drawing on Tradition: Manga, Anime, and Religion in Contemporary Japan; a string of recent articles published in venues like Material Religion, Tricycle, and Sacred Matters has added analysis of material culture, capitalism, and sexuality to the mix. Another ongoing project addresses the politics of religious freedom, the political ramifications of religious studies research, and contested conceptions of the ideal democratic subject. This approach characterizes Thomas’s latest book manuscript Japan, the American Occupation, and the Problem of Religious Freedom and a new project on religion and public school education in postwar Japan.