For our 10th anniversary event, our guest list will feature a mix of familiar friends from years past, as well as some new faces, never before seen at Zenkaikon! We are happy to welcome back "Anime Anthropologist" Charles Dunbar as the first announced guest for Zenkaikon X!
Charles Dunbar is a fan of many things, of which anime and Japanese culture are one (admittedly large) sphere. After discovering the medium through Dragonball Z in high school, he spent his formative college years indulging in giant robots, Pokemon, JRPGs, and Rurouni Kenshin, never expecting his coursework in cultural anthropology to ever intersect with his burgeoning fandom identity. This was only the first of many instances when the Universe decided to troll him hardcore for his obliviousness. After spending years attending his local science fiction convention, Charles began attending anime conventions in earnest in 2007, bumping them up drastically while undertaking fieldwork for his MA in Anthropology, where he researched and wrote on fandom, convention culture, and the changing dynamic of anime fan practices. He never stopped attending, coming back year after year to both indulge his love of anime conventions, and educate his fellow fans on all manner of mythology, Japanese sacred culture, fan cultures, and whatever else grabs his interests. He is currently working concurrently on two books related to these pursuits, dabbling in game scripts, writing his own ghost stories inspired by the folklore he devours, and traveling around the country speaking at conventions, libraries, and the occasional university. You can read his ideas and ruminations on his official website and Twitter.