The Other Side of Lost in Translation


Possibilities and Limitations of J-POP culture in U.S.

The cultural relashionship between Japan and U.S.
has been always like a homely looking high school geeky girl
have a totally one-sided love
toward a handsome star football player.
Of course, he does not notice her a bit.
So she does everything to get his attention, even giving him money.
And this poor girl has been having an obsessive fantasy
that he does care for her even he does not show any sign of it.
No matter what he does or say,
she tends to interpret that it is out of his love for her.

Even before the war, hip Japanese boys and girls
immitated American latest hip cultures
like foshion, music and dance.
In '20s and '30s, those hip boys and girls were called
"Mobo(Modern Boy)" and "Moga(Modern Girl)".
Their fashion was immitation of flappers and
they danced to jazz.

Her name is Midge Williams and she went to Japan in 1933
and she not only sang in clubs in Japan
but also recorded five songs for Japanese Columbia
in English and Japanese about 75 years before Jero
(American Black Enka singer who is now populr in Japan).

Ever since those times, Japanese have been always in love
with American culture.
And their wishfull thinking has been always
America also liking Japan,
which had been far away from the truth
except those so-called Japanophiles.
So I kept writing the vast mojority of Americans
have no interest in Japan or Japanese cultures.
But then, if I go to DVD stores' anime section and game shops,
they carry tons of Japanese titles.
So I decided to investigate what kind of Americans
like those Japanese animes, mangas and other J-pop cultures,
and what kind of cultural phenomenon this is all about.
And what is gonna happen after this?
Will U.S. accept more Japanese other pop cultures as well?,
or will still the racism prevent that?
I believe anime and manga were accepted
because their characters do not look like Asians.
In '60s and '70s, Japanese monster films were popular in U.S.
because the stars of those films were cool monsters,
not ugly flat-faced Asians.

Today I went to New York Anime & Manga meet up group,
and had a good time to talk with people, American otakus.
Though I am still working on the subject of Chinese immigrant,
I am really looking forward to
talking to more anime and manga people next month.

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