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Oh, get a room you two!

America is super popular in Japan, and Japan is super popular in America, though most everyday people in either country don't know this.

I talked to a Japanese woman who told me that when she went to USA everything felt so familiar because they watched so many American movies in Japan and she almost felt at home, but when she went to Europe she had no idea what to do with herself.


8th October 2012

Tagged in America Japan


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442 Comments:
 
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2 years ago #9387298        
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Japan's obsession with America has roots in WWII. For the Japanese, the concept of emotions and will having power of their own is fundamental to their spirituality (if not consciously). They call this force "ki" (breath) and it is a measure of a being's life force. Japan was doing very well at conquering other nations in WWII, and there was a strong sense of nationalistic superiority (that Japan is better because it is destined to be).

And then America dropped two massive bombs on them. Bombs with a power that no one had ever seen, that killed invisibly and for weeks and months afterward. It was like we poisoned reality itself. This, to the Japanese, is a demonstration of ki that they never imagined was possible. It was so traumatic to the Japanese consciousness as a whole that it persists in their film TV, and manga even now (large, dome-shaped explosions that annihilate everything they touch).

We also invaded and occupied the country for years afterward, reshaping their entire culture (it's where the Japanese schoolgirl uniform comes from; the one that looks like a little sailor suit) and restricting in law how the Japanese military was allowed to develop (this is why anime and manga words for military forces translate to things like "defense force"; military was only allowed for defensive purposes). This treaty still exists and even now restricts Japan's military in ways that are making it vulnerable to China.

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1 year ago #9500745        
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Le power of FANGIRLS!! *magical flapping*

Acephale

27 F
2 years ago #9387963        
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It's absolutely true! I'm from the US and grew up watching Sailor Moon. It was enamoring to watch these average girls, all with flaws, be these incredibly powerful super heroes. We love their video games, horror films, anime (particularly their sic-fi), those cute little chibi stickers, Sanrio Co. products, cars, and Miyazaki films. Akira Kurosawa was hugely influential to our cinema, and one of our big time current directors, Tarantino, is obviously influenced by Japanese culture.

Some people from the states even believe they belong in Japan which I find so funny, because often these are people who don't seem to understand Japanese values or culture in the slightest. We have a term for these people, "Weeaboo."

It should also be noted The US always seems to go through intervals of Anglophilia.

2 years ago #9333372        
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When I was living in Japan, I felt like it was practically defined by a need for escapism. It is a country that, culturally, still adheres to conformity as a useful tool for social stability (it's still one of the safest countries on the planet, so it's not like it's not paying off). You can see some of the cracks nowadays, but as long as there's a "vent" it seems like it will still work. That "vent" just happens to be fiction/media from the US, which has a culture that is in many ways just about the opposite of Japan's.

The sheer size of the US rewards cultural complacency at a local level while breeding a sense of individuality. The general sense is "if you don't like what you know so far, you can go elsewhere", but this is a country where a 4 hour drive in any direction will often just get you somewhere with (for a simple example) a different sports team and the same kind of beer and hamburgers. Mass media's not much help, since everyone is clearly watching similar things, and that (I think) accounts for why we look to an "exotic opposite" to have a cultural exchange with.

So basically, the "opposite" is a new frontier for someone who's all too familiar with their current situation, even if the specific causes are so different.

Kyasarin

19 F
27 days ago #9650172        
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And then they start discussing Denmark x Norway, Denmark x Netherlands, Sweden x Åland and Germany x Denmark x Netherlands.
Sister Japan teaches Sister America the fine art of the nosebleed, and by the end of the day they agree to meet regularly to stalk the boys, write fanfiction and draw fanart.
Watch out everyone... The Ultimate Yaoi Shipper Duo is born.

1 month ago #9644805        
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japan even has a fake dog on her head :O

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kobirita

20 F
3 months ago #9626411        
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I wonder what their brothers thinks of this though :XD:

5 months ago #9603087        
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Ja-Merica
MatPat called it

8 months ago #9557490        
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And I'm just here fangirling over both countries ;-)

2 years ago #9393758        
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I love how Ottawa is almost always confused

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