Tom McAuley

Dr Thomas McAuley

Lecturer in Japanese Studies

BA (Sheffield), PhD (London)

Contact details
Tel: 0114 222 8413
Room: 9-A-05


Dr McAuley currently teaches on the following modules:

EAS200 Japanese Language III
EAS210 Japanese Language IV
EAS332 Japanese Language V
EAS333 Japanese Language VI
EAS364 Japanese Popular Culture
EAS6142 Intermediate Japanese Language I
EAS6146 Intermediate Japanese Language II
EAS6147 Upper Intermediate Japanese Language I
EAS6148 Upper Intermediate Japanese Language II

Teaching Philosophy

If I had to sum up my teaching philosophy in a single phrase, it’s that I want to motivate students to learn for themselves. To that end, in my language classes, I don’t provide a single ‘right’ answer – there aren’t any when translating advanced level texts – but seek to provide skills students can apply to any situation, so that when they encounter words, phrases, texts and situations which are unfamiliar, they can feel confident in how to approach them, and discover the challenge and the joy of studying a foreign language and culture. In my studies classes, the focus is on encouraging students to use the materials, whether it be my lectures, or Japanese anime, manga, television, film or music, as a starting point for their own deeper analysis of intricacies of Japanese society, culture and language, and thereby enable them to develop their own understanding.

Current Research

I am currently engaged in two research projects: first, studying the judgements in classical poetry competitions with a view to analysing how they functioned as criticism and their role in the construction of mediaeval Japanese poetics. The long-term aim of this is to produce a book on the development of the poetry competition between the eighth and thirteenth centuries in Japan, however, an initial output will be a complete translation and commentary on Roppyakuban uta’awase (‘The Poetry Contest in Six Hundred Rounds’; 1193), the largest extant poetry competition judged by a single judge, Fujiwara no Shunzei.

Second, I am working on a project studying botanical gardens in Japan which display the plants mentioned the poetry of the eighth century poetry anthology, the Man’yōshū, to determine how they function as both botanical and literary tourism facilities.

Research Supervision

I welcome the opportunity to supervise promising PhD students in a broad range of areas related to translation, linguistics and literature.

I have recently supervised to successful completion a thesis on ideological and propaganda content of children’s songs in the pre-war Japanese school curriculum, and am currently co-supervising a thesis on the integration of instruction on Intercultural Communicative Competence in to the Japanese university English language curriculum.

Media Expertise

I am available to media organisations to discuss various aspects of Japanese language, literature and culture.


(In preparation), The Poetry Contest in Six Hundred Rounds: A Complete Translation and Commentary

(2016), An Anthology of Classical Japanese Poetry: From Man'yōshū to Shinkokinshū, Sheffield:

(2016), Sanekata-shū: The Personal Poetry Collection of Fujiwara no Sanekata, Sheffield:

(2016), Two Hundred Poem Sequences: The Entō Onhyakushu and Keiun Hyakushu, Sheffield:

Edited Books
(2001) Language Change in East Asia. Richmond: Curzon Press.

Book Chapters
(2010) ‘Genji monogatari eiyaku ni okeru kakushu apuroochi no hikakuteki kōsatsu: ikoku bunka no domesutikeeshon’ in Kyoto daigaku daigakuin bungaku kenkyū ka (eds) Sekai no naka no genji monogatari sono fuhensei to gendaisei. Kyoto: Rinsen Shoten: 101-126.

(2001) ‘The changing use of honorifics in Japanese literary texts’ in Language Change in East Asia. Richmond: Curzon Press: 47—69.

Journal Articles
(2016) ‘Viewing a Myriad Leaves: Man’yō Botanical Gardens in Japan’ International Journal of Contents Tourism 1 (2): 1-16.

(2015) ‘Audience Attitude and Translation Reception: The case of Genji monogatari’ Babel 61 (2): 219-241.

(2002) ‘Switch-Reference and Semantic Discontinuity in Late Old Japanese’ Journal of Japanese Linguistics 18: 29-58.

Book Reviews
(2013) “Ambiguous Bodies: Reading the Grotesque in Japanese Setsuwa Tales (Review)”, Marvels & Tales: Journal of Fairy Tale Studies 27(2): 330-333.

(2010) “A Historical Study of Referent Honorifics in Japanese (Review)”, Japan Forum 21(2): 296-98.

(2006) “A Waka Anthology Volume Two: Grasses of Remembrance (Review)”, Japan Forum 18(3): 439-42.

(2002) “Language Change and Language Planning in Japan (Review)”, Journal of European Area Studies 10(1): 138.

(2001) “Light Verse from the Floating World: An Anthology of Japanese Senryū (Review)”, Japan Forum 13(1): 119-20.

(2001) “Idealism, Protest, and The Tale of Genji (Review)”, Japan Forum 13(1): 118-19.

Recent Invited Research Presentations
Waka Translation: Syntax, Intertextuality and Image, (2015) 26th Annual International Japan-English Translation Conference, York St. John University

Autonomous Language Development for PhD Students: The Case for Tandem Learning (2015) International Symposium, Reciprocal second language education in a borderless age: Creating polycentric language learning environments, University of Hokkaido.

Recent International Conference Presentations
American Association of Teachers of Japanese Annual Conference, Seattle (2016) A New Development for Waka in the Digital Humanities.

British Association for Japanese Studies Conference (2015) Man’yō shokubutsuen: Plants, Poetry and Contents Tourism.

Waka Pedagogy in Theory and Practice Workshop, University of Alberta, Edmonton (2015) ‘Is that a winner?’: Uta’awase judgements in the poetics of Fujiwara no Shunzei.

American Association of Teachers of Japanese Annual Conference, Chicago (2015) Patrons and Professionals: Social constraints on criticism in uta’awase.

European Association for Japanese Studies Conference, Ljubljana (2014) Criticism under constraint: the uta awase and the development of Japanese poetics.