Coterie magazines (Dōjinshi/同人誌)


Within the Makino Collection, there are 7 archival document boxes containing 115 folders of prewar and some postwar coterie magazines (dōjinshi/同人) or self-published journals (what we might call fanzines today) from student clubs at universities and other film and fan clubs.These publications were non-commercial periodicals that had limited circulation and contained the writings of amateurs as well as some well-known film critics. Many of these magazines cannot be found in libraries in Japan (or in the U.S.).Some of the pre-WWII coterie magazines in the Makino Collection were formerly owned by Kishi Matsuo/ 岸松雄 (1906 – 1985) the film critic, director, and screenwriter who was also a leading member of the Proletarian Film League of Japan (Prokino) in the 1920s. Some of the magazines in this collection list Kishi as the publisher.Some are also stamped as a gift to Prokino for Kishi with Aji (阿字) stamped on them for Kishi’s real name – Aji Shūichirō.  Since the Prokino office was most likely at his home at that time, it makes sense that they were addressed to Prokino and sent to Kishi. The rest of the coterie magazines were collected by Mr. Makino to supplement Kishi Matsuo’s collection.

The term dōjinshi/同人 is commonly used today for amateur works related to comics (manga), but the prewar materials in the Makino Collection are not manga or anime but film and fan clubs.

In the Collection, there are 89 titles with a total number of 274 issues of these coterie magazines.We have them divided into two main sections. The first contains university coterie publications (50 titles) and the second contains coterie publications that are not related to a specific university (39 titles). The Japanese universities from which these coterie magazines emerge include Chūō University, Dōshisha University, Keiō Gijuku University, Kyoto Teikoku University, Meiji University, Nihon University, Rikkyo University, Tokyo University, Waseda University, among others.Among the coterie magazines are 23 original issues of Eiga zuihitsu/映画随筆 dating from July 1925 to July 1929, along with a photograph from a 1942 Kyoto University academic conference (it is not clear why this photo was with these particular magazines). Some of the coterie magazines, including Eiga zuihitsu/映画随筆and Illusion were stamped Nihon Puroretaria Eiga Renmei/日本プロレタリア映画連盟/ the Proletarian Film League of Japan (Prokino).  These magazines are useful for those interested in the left-wing film movement in Japan.The coterie magazines are located at our offsite facility in New Jersey, known as ReCAP.