On November 16th, 2010 I successfully defended my dissertation.
It is said in Japan that “the nail that sticks out gets pounded down.” Perhaps no one knows this expression better than Japan’s sexual minorities, some of whom perceive their daily lives to be a struggle for recognition and equality. I must first acknowledge all of the men and women in Japan (and around the world) – including my family, colleagues, and close friends – who have not only encouraged my academic explorations of language and sexuality, but who have also offered support, insight, and participation in such endeavors: Robert O’Mochain, Tomoko Oda, Atsushi Iida, Asuka Iijima, Koji Kitagawa, Yumiko Nishii, Ellen Head, Barbara Summerhawk, Akira Sasabe, Yukari Hamada, Tomo Uno, Janelle McNeill, Mark Harrison, Rebecca Hanners, Stacey Vye, Dana Beckelman, Hugh Nicoll, Michele Steele, Angela Ayers, Mindee Lieske, Paule Chao, the Peterson and Lewis families, Megan Herzing, Lisya Seloni, James Welker, Folake Abass, the Yukitoshi family, and the men and women of JALT, JACET, AMSA, and SSSS. A huge thanks to New Victoria Publishers for their generous donation of the books Queer Japan and support of this project. And most importantly to Anita Moran, Len Harrison and Shelly Sue Green Harrison for always being there when needed. Boku no tomodachi tou kazoku niwa, arigatou gozaimasu!
I received much support, both financial and academic from my mentors and instructors at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. This project was made possible by a Doctoral Research Grant from Indiana University of Pennsylvania. To Professors Lilia Savova, Ben Rafoth, Michael M. Williamson, David Hanauer, Gian Pagnucci and Sharon Deckert, I offer my thanks for sharing their passion and expertise throughout my education. To Professor Gloria Park, I offer thanks for helping this project take shape and for seeing to it that I could continue with the project when progress seemed slow. To Professor Robert Heasley, I offer my appreciation for the numerous opportunities given me to share this project with students and professional communities and for keeping the dialogue ever moving forward about gender and sexuality. Finally, a huge thank you to Professor Nancy Hayward for her constant dedication and support while directing this entire project, from its inceptions in our Language and Social Context course to its final days in Jyväskylä, Finland.