B.A. (Japanese Studies); B.A. Hons (Asian Studies); Ph.D. (History and Musicology), University of Western Australia
Affiliated Faculty: Center for East Asian and Pacific Studies, Center for Global Studies
Trained as a historian of religion and emotion, Makoto Harris Takao's approach to music is interdisciplinary, reflected in his historical and contemporary work on Japan’s relationship with Europe, North America, and Australia. As a player of the viol, Takao's work has also informed a number of performance projects both in Australia and Europe, including the Australian and UK premiere revivals of Mulier fortis (1698), a musical drama about the life of Hosokawa Tama (1563–1600) by Johann Bernhard Staudt.
As a doctoral fellow with the Australian Research Council Centre for the History of Emotions, Takao completed a joint PhD in history and musicology at the University of Western Australia. Prior to his appointment at UIUC, he was based in Berlin where he held a postdoctoral position and later a research fellowship at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development (Center for the History of Emotions) and was a core faculty member of the Master’s program in Global History at the Freie Universität.
His current book project, Of Mission and Music: Japanese Christianity and Its Reflection in Early Modern Europe, examines local syncretisms in religious music, drama, and dance that arose from cultural exchanges kindled by Jesuit missionaries in 16th-century Japan. It also analyzes how these exchanges were represented in European musical drama of the early modern period. His present projects include research in relation to: problematizing "nostalgia" from the perspective of Japanese Studies in a global history of emotion (and how this shapes application to music studies); methodologies for global music history; the role of music in Australian-Japanese diplomacy before 1945; the role of colonial networks throughout Asia in the mobility of the early music revival during the 1930s.
Research and Supervisory Interests
- Music and/in Global History ("Global Music History")
- The history of emotions
- Music and "nostalgia" (historical and contemporary perspectives)
- Music and global Christian missions (especially of the Jesuits in Asia)
- Historical and contemporary approaches to Japanese music studies
- Conceptual history (especially of music, religion, and emotion)
- Music and theater in sixteenth- to eighteenth-century Europe
- Colonial alterity and the early music revival
"Beyond Nostalgia and the Prison of English: Positioning Japan in a Global History of Emotions," Zeithistorische Forschungen/Studies in Contemporary History (forthcoming, 2021)
"Francis Xavier at the Court of Ōtomo Yoshishige: Representations of Religious Disputation between Jesuits and Buddhists in La conversione alla santa fede del re di Bungo giaponese (1703)," Journal of Jesuit Studies 3 (2016): 451–474
"We Are Not Jesuits: Reassessing Relations between Protestantism, French Catholicism, and the Society of Jesus in Late Tokugawa to Early Shōwa Japan," in Encounters between Jesuits and Protestants in Asia and the Americas, ed. Jorge Cañizares-Esguerra, Robert Aleksander Maryks, and Ronnie Po-Chia Hsia (Leiden: Brill, 2018), pp. 17–44
"'In what storms of blood from Christ’s flock is Japan swimming?': Gratia Hosokawa and the Performative Representation of Japanese Martyrdom in Mulier fortis (1698)," in Changing Hearts: Performing Jesuit Emotions between Europe, Asia, and the Americas, ed. Yasmin Haskell and Raphaële Garrod (Leiden: Brill, 2019), pp. 87–120