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Faculty of Letters

With long-standing academic traditions that date back to 1877 when the Faculty of Letters was first established at the University of Tokyo, the Faculty has been contributing to research not only in Japan but also internationally.


The Faculty of Letters studies humanity and society from a plethora of perspectives. Including everything from philosophy and religion, history, language, and literature to psychology and sociology, we encourage free thought and a wide variety of methods in our inquiry. As the histories of philosophy and literature make clear, people have an unwavering sense of curiosity that spans the ages. In our studies, we actively engage that past in the present, weaving together new methods to add depth to our understandings of humanity.

The diversity of disciplines within the Faculty of Letters makes us unique. The Faculty of Letters is divided into four broad fields of research, including Philosophy and Religion, History, Language and Culture, and Psychology and Sociology. Those four fields, in turn, are divided into 27 courses of specialization. The Graduate School of Humanities and Sociology is also largely organized around those specializations. Our specializations are not limited to knowledge from Japan. Rather, we build on the vast accumulated knowledge resulting from thought and research worldwide. Each discipline has its own methods for augmenting and challenging that knowledge, but we are united by our interest in humanity.

The Faculty of Letters is also unique in our ceaseless effort to open new areas of inquiry while continuing to engage longstanding scholarly traditions. The establishment of the Cultural Resources Studies Program in the year 2000, the creation of Death and Life Studies and Practical Ethics, which collaborates with several departments, and our Digital Humanities program are exemplary of this pursuit, offering cutting-edge research and insights that our faculty crystalize for students in classes. We have great expectations for our Center for Evolving Humanities, which was inaugurated in 2005 as a base from which to develop new research in the humanities. Additionally, in 2007, we added an interdisciplinary specialization in Contemporary Literary Studies, and in 2011 we opened the Center for Death and Life Studies and Practical Ethics.

We firmly believe in the wealth of knowledge and potential of the humanities, which unite past and future. In our undergraduate programs, we strive to create a curious and creative community of students and faculty. The Graduate School of Humanities and Sociology also takes up that challenge, conducting meaningful research that we continue to share with society and the world.

Type of Degree

Bachelor of Arts


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Major Academic Fields

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