Naoki Yamamoto

Assistant Professor of Film and Media Studies

Ph.D., Yale University, 2012
M.A., Yale University, 2008
M.A., Meiji Gakuin University, 2003
B.A., Meiji Gakuin University, 2000


2417 Social Sciences & Media Studies



film theory; Asian cinema; documentary films; avant-garde art movements; cultural theory; Japanese popular culture


Naoki Yamamoto specializes in film theory, Asian cinema, documentary and political filmmaking, avant-garde art movements, post-colonial studies, and Japanese cultural history. His first book, tentatively entitled “Realities That Matter: The Development of Realist Film Theory and Practice in Japan, 1895-1960,” articulates a new platform for transnational histories of film and media theory by examining the previously neglected work of Japanese thinkers who, in parallel with their Western counterparts, strove to theorize cinema’s unprecedented ability to alter the very notion of the real, as well as its penetrating power to mediate between the masses and their everyday life, in the age of mechanical reproduction. He has published in both English and Japanese on a wide range of topics including the reception of early American cinema in 1910s Japan, wartime Japanese-German co-productions, Japanese New Wave filmmakers of the 1960s, and recent Hollywood blockbuster films. Before joining UCSB in 2013, he was a postdoctoral associate at the Council on East Asian Studies at Yale.