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Orientalism
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Posted 5/4/14
Orientalism, the representation of Asia in a distorted, exaggerated and stereotyped way. An example that everyone's familiar with is "me so horny, me love you long time" a line originated from the 1987 movie Full Metal Jacket. Some people say orientalism shouldn't be offensive because it doesn't come from a place of hate. Some say it's a form of racism. It seems like in the realm of anime, weeaboos analogs orientalist in that their behavior stretches beyond curiosity about Asia in harmful ways. What's your take on orientalism, are weeaboos orientalists?
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Posted 5/4/14
I think it can only be considered "racism" if it's meant to be harmful/derogatory to the other culture.

The quote from Full Metal Jacket was used to be humorous, and, as you said, doesn't stem from a place of hate.

Weaboos are (typically) trying to respect the culture and just do a shit job of it, though I wouldn't classify them as a form of orientalism.
Posted 5/4/14 , edited 5/4/14
this is one of those elastic[?] words
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Posted 5/4/14
I don't think of it as rasicm, but it also counts on each specific situation or account. Some can branch into harmless>off color>offensive>rascim. Just depends on how/what thing you're talking about. Something can be offensive to one and harmless to the other....and even if it's generally accepted as hurtful to many, some people will shrug it off & call it 'harmless' anyway.
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Posted 5/6/14
I think weeaboos and orientalists are quite different. Weeaboos are just incredibly enthusiastic about Asian cultures, whereas it seems orientalists fabricate/exaggerate these cultures in a patronising way.


...weeaboos analogs orientalist in that their behavior stretches beyond curiosity about Asia in harmful ways.

In what way have weeaboos' behaviour been harmful to Asian culture? I would think enthusiasm in a culture is quite harmless.
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Posted 5/6/14
I have this thing on my mind that itches me. Think a well-awarded movie starred by black people. From that, instead of black people replace it with asians. Would that movie ever win an award? I don't know if asians are taken seriously in the western world.

I know I'm not the only one who thought about this. It's not a popular thought but someone should thought about it, right?
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Posted 5/7/14 , edited 5/7/14
The definition of weeaboo is already pretty grey as is, considering how it is commonly confused with the term Otaku. However, weeaboos by the simplest definition is one who are big fans of Japanese culture or media such as anime, and manga. However most weeaboos are ignorant of the actual aspects of the culture and simply "love" Japan on the basic premise of their favorite animes and mangas or even simply what they have heard of. Because of this, weeaboos at worst can be considered socially ignorant, but not racist. Now otakus on the otherhand, I could go on and on about that topic... lol
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Posted 5/7/14

ascentive wrote:

The definition of weeaboo is already pretty grey as is

Use Google:
http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/weeaboo
There is a definition, people simply need to actually try to do some research before actually starting things that they have no clue about (No offense to anyone).
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Posted 5/7/14

aGreekSudaneseGerman wrote:

Use Google:
http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/weeaboo
There is a definition, people simply need to actually try to do some research before actually starting things that they have no clue about (No offense to anyone).


Well that's the issue, that definition leaves it for interpretation. An otaku can possibly fit all the descriptions mentioned in the definition of a weeaboo, so what are they really? Are they one or the other? Or can someone be both? Some people agree they're different and some say its interchageable.
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Posted 5/7/14

ascentive wrote:


aGreekSudaneseGerman wrote:

Use Google:
http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/weeaboo
There is a definition, people simply need to actually try to do some research before actually starting things that they have no clue about (No offense to anyone).


Well that's the issue, that definition leaves it for interpretation. An otaku can possibly fit all the descriptions mentioned in the definition of a weeaboo, so what are they really? Are they one or the other? Or can someone be both? Some people agree they're different and some say its interchageable.


otaku:
'Otaku (おたく/オタク?) is a Japanese term for people with obsessive interests, commonly the anime and manga fandom'
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Otaku#Usage
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Posted 5/20/14 , edited 5/20/14

Albaer wrote:

I think weeaboos and orientalists are quite different. Weeaboos are just incredibly enthusiastic about Asian cultures, whereas it seems orientalists fabricate/exaggerate these cultures in a patronising way.


...weeaboos analogs orientalist in that their behavior stretches beyond curiosity about Asia in harmful ways.

In what way have weeaboos' behaviour been harmful to Asian culture? I would think enthusiasm in a culture is quite harmless.
I think weeaboos/koreaboos/asianphiles are orientalist. Yellow Rage, link in spoilers. Their shirts speak for themselves.

Asianphiles stretches enthusiasm to exaggeration and fabrication on what they think Japan/Korea/Asia is like......which is very patronizing. What they read in manga becomes what they think they see in Japan. What they see in kdramas becomes what they want to see in Korea. When people say "ni hao ma" "konnichiwa" to every asian person that walks by them..... that's orientalism.....and racism. orientalists see people as a conglomeration of stereotypes instead of viewing them as actual people with free thought.
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Posted 5/20/14
Well, the definition of racism is prejudice in a context of power. Western Culture certainly has a lot of prejudice against the east and against Asian culture. Prejudice does not need to come from hate either. It can be as simple as judging someone before you have good reason to do so. Sociologically, any prejudice from a point of power would constitute racism and it can be exemplified in all the racist things we would say are not meant to symbolize hatred, but are obviously offensive. If Sambo and Uncle Ben are not okay, neither is the Vietnam prostitute with shaky English and morals. Though I can not speak on weeaboos. I do not know enough about them.
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Posted 5/20/14

FlyinDumpling wrote:
I think weeaboos/koreaboos/asianphiles are orientalist. Yellow Rage, link in spoilers. Their shirts speak for themselves.

Asianphiles stretches enthusiasm to exaggeration and fabrication on what they think Japan/Korea/Asia is like......which is very patronizing. What they read in manga becomes what they think they see in Japan. What they see in kdramas becomes what they want to see in Korea. When people say "ni hao ma" "konnichiwa" to every asian person that walks by them..... that's orientalism.....and racism. orientalists see people as a conglomeration of stereotypes instead of viewing them as actual people with free thought.


I am not sure why an Asianphile is necessarily patronizing. I will admit, I can see how it may be annoying in some cases, but patronizing seems rather extreme. So what is some random 19 year old thinks Akihabara is inhabited by thousands of extremely cute girls who all dress in maid costumes because they love them so much? A trip to Japan will quickly cure him/her of that fantasy.

I would be more concerned about how little the average Westerner really knows about Asian history and how the West has been meddling in Asia for centuries than anything that has to do with a Weeaboo.

And racist? Strictly speaking I suppose one could classify Orientalism as racism, but it is fairly harmless compared to people who think you can train dogs to specifically smell out Asians because they clearly must smell differently from White people. Both can be seen as racist, but there is a huge gap between them.
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Posted 5/20/14

Cellory wrote:

I am not sure why an Asianphile is necessarily patronizing. I will admit, I can see how it may be annoying in some cases, but patronizing seems rather extreme. So what is some random 19 year old thinks Akihabara is inhabited by thousands of extremely cute girls who all dress in maid costumes because they love them so much? A trip to Japan will quickly cure him/her of that fantasy.

I would be more concerned about how little the average Westerner really knows about Asian history and how the West has been meddling in Asia for centuries than anything that has to do with a Weeaboo.

And racist? Strictly speaking I suppose one could classify Orientalism as racism, but it is fairly harmless compared to people who think you can train dogs to specifically smell out Asians because they clearly must smell differently from White people. Both can be seen as racist, but there is a huge gap between them.
next time someone hollers at me saying that they want to tear my asian ass into two I'll remember at least there aren't racist trained dogs sniffing my ass. Thank you for helping me make this distinction. I now know that feeling patronized is extreme but being orientalized is harmless. Come to china and I'll proof to you I don't eat dog, I swear
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Posted 5/21/14

FlyinDumpling wrote:


Cellory wrote:

I am not sure why an Asianphile is necessarily patronizing. I will admit, I can see how it may be annoying in some cases, but patronizing seems rather extreme. So what is some random 19 year old thinks Akihabara is inhabited by thousands of extremely cute girls who all dress in maid costumes because they love them so much? A trip to Japan will quickly cure him/her of that fantasy.

I would be more concerned about how little the average Westerner really knows about Asian history and how the West has been meddling in Asia for centuries than anything that has to do with a Weeaboo.

And racist? Strictly speaking I suppose one could classify Orientalism as racism, but it is fairly harmless compared to people who think you can train dogs to specifically smell out Asians because they clearly must smell differently from White people. Both can be seen as racist, but there is a huge gap between them.
next time someone hollers at me saying that they want to tear my asian ass into two I'll remember at least there aren't racist trained dogs sniffing my ass. Thank you for helping me make this distinction. I now know that feeling patronized is extreme but being orientalized is harmless. Come to china and I'll proof to you I don't eat dog, I swear


Last I checked no Asianphile is going to want to tear anyone's asian ass in two. Seems to be a diametrically opposed attitude in fact.

And I did not say it was harmless, I said it was fairly harmless. As in relation to the real issues of racism and prejudice. You might not eat dog meat, but many Chinese do. Granted, it is still a small part of the population, but there you go. It may be a stereotype, but it is one based on some truth. Just as weeaboos have mistaken beliefs based on an Anime or Manga. It is not that Akihabara is not an Otaku paradise with girls dressed as Maids, it is just that it is not to the degree that many Manga or Anime portray it to be.

I guess I would just rather deal with the actual racist and prejudice attitudes than spend valuable time and energy that could be going to that cause worrying about Weeaboos. In a perfect world one could deal with both, but in the real world time and resources are limited, so it makes sense to focus, at least for now, on the bigger issues than the smaller ones.
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