Anne Allison

Anne Allison

Professor of Cultural Anthropology

External address: 
230 Friedl Building, East Campus, Durham, NC 27708-0091
Internal office address: 
Box 90091, Durham, NC 27708-0091
(919) 681-6257


Anne Allison is a cultural anthropologist who researches the intersection between political economy, everyday life, and the imagination in the context of late capitalist, post-industrial Japan. Her work spans the subjects of sexuality, pornography, and maternal labor to the globalization of Japanese youth products and the precarity of irregular workers. She is the author of Nightwork: Sexuality, Pleasure, and Corporate Masculinity in a Tokyo Hostess Club (University of Chicago Press, 1994—an ethnography of the Japanese corporate practice of entertaining employees and customers in the sexualized atmosphere of hostess clubs; Permitted and Prohibited Desires: Mothers, Comics, and Censorship in Japan (University of California Press 2000)—a collection of essays analyzing the complex desires linking motherhood, pornographic comics, and popular culture; and Millennial Monsters: Japanese Toys and the Global Imagination (University of California Press, 2006)—a study of the intermeshing of fantasy, capitalism, and cultural politics in the rise of Japan's brand of "cool" youth-goods on the global marketplace. Her most recent book, Precarious Japan (forthcoming from Duke University Press, 2013) looks at the socio-economic shifts in post-corporatist Japan towards precaritization of work, sociality, and everyday security.

Education & Training

  • Ph.D., University of Chicago 1986

Allison, A. “Producing Mothers: Production, Motherhood, and Schools in Japan.” Re-Imaging Japanese Women, edited by Anne E. Imamura, University of California Press, 1996, pp. 135–55.

Allison, A. “Shakaisei no ima, kansei, kazoku, soshite nihon no kodomo ("Sociality Today: Sentiment, Family, and Japanese Youth").” Kobougaku 4: Kibou No Hajimari: Ryuudookasuru Sekaide: The Social Sciences of Hope, Volume 4: The Beginning of Hope: In a World of Flux, edited by Todaishaken Institute of Social Sciences et al., vol. 4, Tokyo Daigaku Shuppansha, pp. 129–49.

Allison, A. “"Shinjidai no Fuetesshu, Monsuta-, Soshite Tomodachi: Mireniamu (Shinseki) no Pokemonshihonshugi".” Media and Popular Culture, edited by Reiko Tsuchiyua and Yoshimi Shunya.


Allison, A. “Carne Furente: Bambole Guerriere Attraverso il Pacifico.” La Bambola E Il Robottone, edited by Alessandro Gomarasca, 2001, pp. 145–78.

Allison, A. “Ogetti e magia come valuta di scambio: Il Gioco Globale dei Pokemon.” La Bambola E Il Robottone, edited by Alessandro Gomarasca, 2001, pp. 263–78.

Allison, Anne. “Memoirs of the Orient.” Journal of Japanese Studies, vol. 27, no. 2, JSTOR, 2001, pp. 381–381. Crossref, doi:10.2307/3591971. Full Text

Allison, A. “Review of Karaoke Around the World: Global Technology, Local Singing.” Journal of Japanese Studies, edited by Toru Mitsui and Shuhei Hosokawa, vol. 26, 2000, pp. 169–73.

Allison, A. “A challenge to hollywood? Japanese character goods hit the us.” Japanese Studies, vol. 20, no. 1, Jan. 2000, pp. 67–88. Scopus, doi:10.1080/10371390050009075. Full Text

Allison, Anne, and Aviad E. Raz. “Riding the Black Ship: Japan and Tokyo Disneyland.” Monumenta Nipponica, vol. 55, no. 2, JSTOR, 2000, pp. 315–315. Crossref, doi:10.2307/2668444. Full Text

Allison, Anne. “About Face: Performing Race in Fashion and Theater. By Dorinne Kondo. New York and London: Routledge, 1997. 277 pp. $17.95.The Journal of Asian Studies, vol. 57, no. 3, Cambridge University Press (CUP), Aug. 1998, pp. 806–09. Crossref, doi:10.2307/2658751. Full Text

Allison, A. “Transgressions of the Everyday: Stories of Mother-Son Incest in Japanese Popular Culture.” Positions, vol. 2, 1995, pp. 67–499.

Allison, A. A Male Gaze in Japanese Children’s Cartoons, or, Are Naked Female Bodies Always Sexual? Duke University Working Papers, Asian Pacific Studies Institute, 1993.

Allison, A. “Dominating Men: Male Dominance on Company Expense in a Tokyo Hostess Club.” Genders, no. 16, University of Colorado, 1993, pp. 1–16.