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Japan, Anime & Rest of the world
Posted 3/31/14 , edited 5/20/14

Just posting a simple edit, this thread is complete bs. I was basicly trying to force some kind of made-up agenda that i was attached to after being influenced by some negative articles and point of veiws around the web. So i started to hate on japanese marketing
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Posted 3/31/14 , edited 3/31/14
When the Japanese created their first animations in 1917, they were American-influenced cartoons made in Japan. Many countries began doing so around that time, as well. American cartoons were a hit and became a worldwide phenomenon and commonly emulated. It wasn't until the 1960s, with the works of Osamu Tezuka, that anime deviated from its origins enough to clearly be seen as morphing into a rather unique style, where it continued to transform, albeit being fairly isolated from the world. Around the late 1980's to early 1990's, with the technology boom and the end of the Cold War, anime began receiving more and more attention. Just like what occurred with the Industrial Revolution of the late 1800's, relations with other countries surged, allowing anime to "seep into the West" and Japan's neighbors (more so). Then, in the late 1990's, the attention skyrocketed and Japanese animations have been quickly becoming more and more "mainstream." This time around, as a mirror-image of what brought about anime in the first place, anime is being mimicked and absorbed by the rest of the world. It's a give and take cycle, basically. At this point, though, anime hasn't been adopted enough to no longer be seen as "different." Also, anime is almost entirely soaked with Japanese culture, so, yes, outside viewers are recipients of that. There are fans and anime-influenced productions that draw from their own non-Japanese cultures, but that isn't widespread/obvious yet. It's still more popular to automatically insert subtle and not-so-subtle indicators of Japanese culture into artwork/animation inspired by anime and manga.

I'm not particularly moved by Japan's pop culture.
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Posted 3/31/14
Posted 4/1/14
Anime: by the Japanese for the Wapanese.
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Posted 4/1/14 , edited 4/1/14
I don't know. Sometimes I feel like some anime are meant for Japan only instead of just the world, especially with the common tropes, cliches, and lack of understanding anything outside of Japan. I think Japanese culture is great but I think any country's culture is great too. Too bad I won't ever get to see an anime series based off the accurate culture of another country.


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Posted 4/1/14 , edited 4/1/14
I never got the mentality of 'if it's made outside of Japan it's only Japan/anime influenced' and here's why: If an anime studio moved out of Japan to, say, America as an example, and made a complete anime in that one studio would that mean it wasn't anime because it wasn't made on Japanese turf? I don't think it would, I think it would still definitely be an anime, so that definition doesn't really work.

But then you can't really judge it on its art because stuff like Panty and Stocking is an anime, and while things like the transformation scenes are anime style, the rest of it is parodying western animation. Ultimately I bring it down to the developers. If the developers define their product as an anime, then its an anime.

It reminds me of a convention I saw with Crispin Freeman, and I can't quote this word for word but, a girl in the audience, referring to the main character's name, asked 'in Hellsing, is it Alucard or Arucard' and he said 'It's Alucard' to which she replied 'No it's not though, it's Arucard' and he said 'But it's set in London, my dear. Look, I asked the creator of the show the same question and he wrote it down as 'Alucard' despite only being able to pronounce it as 'Arucard' (being Japanese). If the creator says it's Alucard, it's Alucard' and I apply that to my views on what defines an anime as an anime. If the creator says it is, then it is.

Personally I can't say I'm that big on Japanese culture outside of the whole anime deal. The only other thing I really like about it is some of the pretty locations with shrines or sakura tree's. I'm not actually that well versed on popular Japanese culture to begin with, but I don't really mind since I'm content with what I enjoy.
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Posted 4/1/14
Anime has always been a short form for imported japanese cartoons. something shorter and more palatable than Japanimation.

So... yeah it's always been a 'source' based definition for me. with no particular value placed on the source. ( I DON'T believe that anime is always 'GREAT ANIME' that no westerner should DARE sully with their grubby paws)

that said. Lately there have been a lot of blurred lines. Anime adaptions of American superheroes. Anime with an more 'western' art style western cartoon that have a great many of the things art or story telling wise that I used to believe were the province of anime and even Western 'anime style' art.

I may have to come up with a new vocabulary.
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Posted 4/1/14
I recommend reading Anime a history by John Clements as it's very insightful about this question
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Posted 4/1/14 , edited 4/1/14
I totally agree with you, op

Anime will always be Japanese and trying to change that for the "good of the world" is just another way of people saying that they want to take credit for something that doesn't belong to them. Sure, American culture might have influenced anime, but it seems like people are trying to say American AND Japanese people collectively created anime and Americans should have equal credit when obviously that is not the case. It's like telling them you have rights to sushi because centuries ago, seaweed grew on oceans that once belonged to the west.

You can draw [what you think is] manga/anime, of course. There are many non-Japanese artist, but know that the inheritance is in japan. Don't tell a Japanese person how to cook a Japanese dish if you are not a Japanese chef. Anime was created by Japanese people with their JAPANESE audience in mind. Way too many times people watch anime but disregarded to respect Japanese culture. It's fine to like only anime, but don't let your western understanding of Japanese culture tell you what japanese culture is because what you will be saying is "fuck japanese culture".Good topic btw.


"despite only being able to pronounce it as 'Arucard' (being Japanese)."
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Posted 4/1/14
I don't like the idea that Japanese culture belongs only to Japanese people so only Japanese people can run it. I see it as a culture they have been exposed to from birth, rather than their "possession". Same with the language, you shouldn't be banned from using certain styles of speech because you're not Japanese.

Of course, you'd need experience and exposure to the culture to not pull a fiasco however.


Interestingly, even though Anime was made for the Japanese people, it flourished so much in the west that the Japanese government freaked out and visited the west to investigate why. Kind of a "My Little Pony" effect if you ask me.
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Posted 4/1/14 , edited 4/1/14

Jnax wrote:

japanese artists wanting to share their art with the world, fair enough. But on the other hand, anime is starting to become less "japanese" and more of a "worldwide" thing.
From what i have a observed so far: The anime community, identifies them selfs as japanese animation fans and thus so
anime art created by the community or otherwise "outside of japan" is not real anime but japanese/anime influenced art. This implies that everyone who watches anime outside of japan is nothing more than a recipient of japanese culture. Thats not a win-win relationship.

You like japanese pop culture?
no? i like anime. fuck japan.


I am not sure about the purpose of this post really.

Are you saying that we should ignore the fact that Anime comes from Japan and pretend that it has nothing to do with Japan?

Bottom line here is that Anime is animation made first and foremost for the Japanese audience. Anything else to me is simply Animation made for another country's audience. A person can define it however they want of course, that is just how I see it because to me Anime is not just an art style. The styles have and do change. But what remains is that when you watch Anime you can tell it is made for a Japanese audience. The settings, how things are done, what is said, relationships between people, everything is permeated with Japanese culture. That is why one can tell instantly a show like Avatar the Last Airbender or RWBY is not made for a Japanese audience first and foremost. And why I do not consider them to be Anime per se. Even in Anime shows that take place outside of Japan, the characters act and talk and are motivated like the Japanese would be.

In any event, I do not see how seeing another country's pop culture is necessarily a bad thing.

Personally I just like the fact that we have cartoons that are not made just for kids ala Disney or Saturday morning cartoons. That Anime has created a whole genre of more intelligence shows like Last Exile or even Stein's Gate. And yes, there are losers in this medley of Anime. But at least there are shows that have a lot of appeal beyond the 10-12 age bracket and appeal even in other countries. I do not see the downsides really.

Unless this is some sort of weird April Fools joke of course...
Posted 4/3/14 , edited 5/20/14
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Posted 4/3/14 , edited 4/3/14

Jnax wrote:

From what I have a observed so far, the anime community identify themselves as Japanese animation fans, thus, anime-related works of art created by the community (or otherwise "outside of Japan") is not real anime but Japanese/anime-influenced art. This implies that everyone that watches anime outside of Japan is nothing more than a recipient of Japanese culture. That's not a win-win relationship.

You like japanese pop culture?
no? i like anime. fuck japan.


Anime, having been created in Japan, makes it Japanese culture. It is culture that everyone can embrace--not just the Japanese society. You're right; the anime made outside of Japan is not real in the cultural sense, but it can still be anime.

And what's wrong with being just a recipient of Japanese culture? It's something I love being able to receive no matter where I live. I say that's a win-win relationship ipso facto.

Also, please don't tell me you're serious with your ending statement.
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Posted 4/3/14
Well somebody clearly had a bad day and went to the internet to vent their frustrations.

There is nothing to see here, move along.
Posted 4/3/14
Good point
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