Klaus Antoni, born in 1953, is a Japanologist with special interests in the fields of culture studies and history of religious ideas in pre modern and modern Japan. In 1981 he completed his doctorate at the university of Freiburg (Germany) with a dissertation on problems concerning comparative Japanese mythology. In the same year he moved to the University of Munich, where in 1985 the habilitation (postdoctoral thesis and teaching qualification) for the field of Japanese studies took place. As habilitation thesis he presented a work on Miwa belief in ancient Japan. After chairs at the universities of Hamburg (1987) and Trier (1993) he took over the chair for Japanese Cultural Studies at the Institute for Japanese Studies of Tuebingen University in 1998. From 2000 to 2004 Antoni served as Dean of the Faculty for Cultural Sciences and from 2010 to 2016 as Dean of Reserach of the new Faculty of Humanities; from 2004 to 2010 he was elected member of the senate of Tuebingen University. In 2005 Antoni stayed as Invited Visiting Scholar at the Reischauer Institute of Japanese Studies at Harvard University.
Antoni has stayed repeatedly in Japan, for the first time already in 1969/70 as an exchange High School student, later on for studies and research purposes, e.g. in 1992/93 as a visiting professor at the City University of Ôsaka. In 1991 he received the first international research award of the Tamaki-Foundation at the University of Vienna.
Antoni's main points of research interests are located in the area of cultural and religious history of Japan. He particularly inquires into the question of relationships between religion ("Shintô") and ideology in pre modern and modern Japan. Furthermore, he is interested in theories concerning Japanese culture (e.g. cultural stereotypes on Japan) as well as in the historical and present relationship between Japan and Asia.