Aiko Okamoto-MacPhail

Aiko Okamoto-MacPhail

Visiting Scholar


  • Ph.D., Comparative Literature, Indiana University-Bloomington, École Normal Supérieure de Paris, 2001
  • M.A., French Literature, Tokyo University of Foreign Studies
  • M.A., Philosophy, University of Paris I
  • M.A., Literature, University of Paris VIII

Research Areas

  • 19th and 20th-century French thought
  • Cultural relationship between France and Japan


  • Développement mélodieux: Sense and the Senses in Maurice Merleau-Ponty”, Contemporary French and Francophone Studies, volume 22, Issue 3, 2018: 283-290.
  • “Les Sciences Humaines dans le Japon aujourd’hui”, L’Archicube 24, Quel avenir pour les humanités? Paris: Revue de l’Association des anciens élèves, élèves et amis de l’École Normale Supérieure (juin 2018): 114-119.

About Aiko Okamoto-MacPhail

My studies originally started in the fields of nineteenth-century France and twentieth-century French thought with a double maîtrise in France. My dissertation was on the French relationship with Japan in the frame of the exchange between East and West in a comparative perspective. I divide the field between the first period from 1549 to 1639 when the Society of Jesus was the main proponent of European civilization in Japan; and Japonisme in nineteenth century France when the Japanese reception of European arts and sciences went back to Europe. Both periods are closely related through multiple print media. The framework of my studies maintains an equal emphasis on the East and the West. I also engage with the important question of how to perceive the exchange of thoughts that determine the structure of truth. My studies of Stéphane Mallarmé and Maurice Merleau-Ponty fall into this category of question.