Tuesday, August 30, 2005
On Saturday, September 24th from 1-3 pm, fans of Japanese anime will have the opportunity to meet and greet Gilles Poitras, author of The Anime Companion, Anime Essentials, and creator of monthly column, "Below the Surface," for Newtype USA. Poitras will be at the Cartoon Art Museum to present and discuss his latest book, The Anime Companion 2: More... What's Japanese in Japanese Animation?, and will be available for book signing afterwards. The presentation is part of regular museum admission, the book-signing is free to the public.
In The Anime Companion 2, the long-awaited follow-up to the popular original volume, Poitras delves into hundreds of all-new glossary-style entries to help you decipher anime's distinctive content, images, and cultural motifs!
Ranging from Aikido to Zero fighters (with Japanese Mountain Vegetables in between), Poitras covers all the elements of anime in fascinating detail, including illustrations, anime images, film citations, and numerous references to the related art of manga. More than a guide, it is a pop survey of Japanese art, kitsch, history, food and daily life. Now with entries not only in Roman letters but also in kanji and kana (Japanese writing), The Anime Companion remains the best friend an otaku (anime fan) ever had, and a fun way for the non-otaku to learn about Japan.
Gilles Poitras first discovered anime while walking through San Francisco's Japantown in 1977. As a fan of foreign films, he was instantly attracted by the use of cinematic effects in ways that he had never seen in animation before. This began an interest in anime and manga that continues to grow after all of these years.
A librarian by profession, Poitras has used his passion to promote and document the legitimacy of the art form. In the past, he has conducted presentations for Japan-USA friendship groups, taught a class to Pixar staff, was a panelist on the pop culture segment for the Japan Society of Northern California's Year in Review series, introduced the Cutie Honey live action movie at the San Francisco International Asian Film Festival, and spoke at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington DC.
Poitras possesses two Masters degrees: one in Library Science from the University of California at Berkeley and one in Theology from Pacific School of Religion also in Berkeley. His background in theology has proven beneficial in that it gave him the scholarly skills to look at anime and manga with a disciplined eye. This has enabled him to employ anime and manga as a window into Japanese culture.