Introducing Japanese Popular Culture  book cover
2nd Edition

Introducing Japanese Popular Culture

Edited By

Alisa Freedman

  • Available for pre-order on March 28, 2023. Item will ship after April 18, 2023
ISBN 9781032298092
April 18, 2023 Forthcoming by Routledge
608 Pages 31 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Specifically designed for use in a range of undergraduate and graduate courses, while reaching specialists and general readers, this second edition of Introducing Japanese Popular Culture is a comprehensive textbook offering an up-to-date overview of a wide variety of media forms.

It uses particular case studies as a way into examining the broader themes in Japanese culture and provides a thorough analysis of the historical and contemporary trends that have shaped artistic production, as well as politics, society, and economics. As a result, more than being a time capsule of influential trends, this book teaches enduring lessons about how popular culture reflects the societies that produce and consume it. With contributions from an international team of scholars, representing a range of disciplines from history and anthropology to art history and media studies, this book’s selections include:

  • Characters
  • Television
  • Videogames
  • Fan Media and Technology
  • Music
  • Popular Cinema
  • Anime
  • Manga
  • Spectacles and Competitions
  • Sites of Popular Culture
  • Fashion
  • Contemporary Art

Written in an accessible style, this textbook will be essential reading for students of Japanese culture and society, Asian media and popular culture, globalization, and Asian Studies in general.

Table of Contents

1. Introducing Japanese Popular Culture: Serious Approaches to Playful Trends  Part 1: Characters  2. Kumamon: Japan’s Surprisingly Cheeky Mascot  3. ’Hello Kitty Is Not a Cat?!?’: Tracking Japanese Cute Culture at Home and Abroad  Part 2: Television  4. The Grotesque Hero: Depictions of Justice in Tokusatsu Superhero Television Programs  5. Tokyo Love Story: Romance of the Working Woman in Japanese Television Dramas  6. The World Too Much with Us in Japanese Travel Television  Part 3: Videogames  7. Nuclear Discourse in Final Fantasy VII: Embodied Experience and Social Critique  8. Policing Youth: Boy Detectives in Japanese Visual Novel Games  9. The Cute Shall Inherit the Earth: Postapocalyptic Posthumanity in Tokyo Jungle  Part 4: Fan Media and Technology  10. Managing Manga Studies in the Convergent Classroom  11. Thumb Generation Literature: The Rise and Fall of Japanese Cellphone Novels  12. Purikura: Expressive Energy in Female Self-Photography  13. Cosplay Everywhere: Costume Diplomacy at the World Cosplay Summit  14. Hatsune Miku: Virtual Idol, Media Platform, and Crowd-Sourced Celebrity  Part 5: Music  15. Electrifying the Japanese Teenager Across Generations: The Role of the Electric Guitar in Japan’s Popular Culture  16. The "Pop Pacific": Japanese American Sojourners and the Development of Japanese Popular Music  17. AKB Business: Idols and Affective Economies in Contemporary Japan  18. In Search of Japanoise: Globalizing Underground Music  19. Korean Pop Music in Japan: Understanding the Complex Relationship Between Japan and Korea in the Popular Culture Realm  Part 6: Popular Cinema  20. The Prehistory of Soft Power: Godzilla, Cheese, and the American Consumption of Japan  21. The Rise of Japanese Horror Films: Yotsuya Ghost Story (Yotsuya Kaidan), Demonic Men, and Victimized Women  22. V-Cinema: How Home Video Revitalized Japanese Film and Mystified Film Historians  Part 7: Anime  23. Apocalyptic Animation: In the Wake of Hiroshima, Nagasaki, Godzilla, and Baudrillard  24. Toy Stories: Robots and Magical Girls in Anime Marketing  25. The World According to Ghibli, or How a Small Japanese Animation Studio Became a Global Phenomenon  26. Condensing the Media Mix: The Tatami Galaxy’s Multiple Possible Worlds  Part 8: Manga  27. A Jew and a Nazi Walk into an Izakaya: Tezuka Osamu’s Holocaust Manga  28. Gekiga, or Japanese Alternative Comics: The Mediascape of Japanese Counterculture  29. The Beautiful Men of the Inner Chamber: Gender-Bending, Boys’ Love and Other Shōjo Manga Tropes in Ōoku for Yoshinaga Fumi  30. Cyborg Empiricism: The Ghost Is Not in the Shell  Part 9: Spectacles and Competitions  31. Hanabi: The Cultural Significance of Fireworks in Japan  32. Kamishibai: The Fantasy Space of the Urban Street Corner  33. Making A Game of Their Own: Baseball as Japan’s National Sport  34. Pop Go the Games: Japanese Popular Culture and Politics at the Olympics  Part 10: Sites  35. Shibuya: Reflective Identity in Transforming Urban Space  36. Akihabara: Promoting and Policing ‘Otaku’ in ‘Cool Japan’  37. Japan Lost and Found: Modern Ruins as Debris of the Economic Miracle  Part 11: Fashion  38. Cute Fashion: The Social Strategies and Aesthetics of Kawaii  39. Made in Japan: A New Generation Fashion Designers  Part 12: Contemporary Art  40. Superflat Life  41. Aida Makoto: Notes from an Apathetic Continent  42. The Art of Upcycling in the Set Inland Sea

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Alisa Freedman is a Professor of Japanese Literature, Cultural Studies, and Gender at the University of Oregon, USA. Her books include Japan on American TV: Screaming Samurai Join Anime Clubs in the Land of the Lost (2021) and Tokyo in Transit: Japanese Culture on the Rails and Road (2010).