Wesleyan portrait of Scott W. Aalgaard

Scott W. Aalgaard

Assistant Professor of East Asian Studies

Fisk Hall, 309


BA University of Victoria
MA University of Victoria
MA University of Chicago
PHD University of Chicago

Scott W. Aalgaard

Scott W. Aalgaard works on cultural production in modern and contemporary Japan, with particular emphases on popular music and literature. His work addresses geopolitics, political economy, regional and social histories, nationalism, fascism, and disparate modes of protest and critique, among other topics. His forthcoming book, titled Homesick Blues: Politics, Protest, and Musical Storytelling in Modern Japan (University of Hawai'i Press, 2023), explores the interplay between music and everyday life, and how music is used by artists, fans, and others to imagine and re-imagine social, political, and cultural life in modern Japan. It is oriented toward understanding the ways in which artists, authors, and individual social actors use music to understand the world, and to envision different possibilities for living in it.

Aalgaard's research also explores the manifestation and utility of sound in literature, and engages with the histories of the Japanese Empire (1869-1945) and its narrative intersections with fleshly bodies. He is interested in the possibilities and pitfalls of storytelling, and how the strategic, tactical conjuring and telling of stories (in various forms, and in different ways) can both serve different modes of power and discourse--and promise to upend them.

Academic Affiliations

Office Hours

Mondays & Tuesdays, 3:00PM to 4:00PM, or by appointment. Everyone is welcome, whether you are taking my classes or not.


Fall 2022
CEAS 201 - 01

CEAS 300 - 01
Storytelling in Japan's Empire

Spring 2023
CEAS 285 - 01
Pop Music Revolutionaries

CEAS 390 - 01
Japanese Women's Writing