Ayako Kano's research focuses on the intersection of gender, performance, and politics, as well as on Japanese cultural history of the late 19th to early 20th century. Her first book focused on the first generation of actresses in modern Japanese theater. She is currently writing a book about Japanese feminist debates from the 1890s to present. Future projects include a cross-cultural analysis of the medieval Japanese noh theater, as well as a book on film actresses and female spectatorship. Select publications: Acting Like a Woman in Modern Japan: Theater, Gender, and Nationalism and “Towards a Critique of Transhistorical Femininity.