RobertOuellete

Am I an outsider in this community?

6 posts in this topic

ello all. I came to post here to ask a question and to confirm whether my hypothesis and observations are true.

As in introduction, I am a fan of Japanese culture, mainly for its cuisine, traditions and art (traditional art of course, its art) as well as the landscapes of Japan.

The other half, I am also interested in anime/manga/games too though. But unlike most "fans" my interests of Japan are split 50/50 between the ancient and traditional stuff and the modern pop-stuff.

Japan, being my hobby and interest, I thought I would find some like minded fellows thinking there might be folks that I can "just chill and have a beer/coffee/etc" with.

But as I look into it more, I feel that my personality is galaxies apart from most if not all people who are interested in Japan. For a lack of better word, I am referring to Japanophiles.

if you look at this guy here:
http://answers.yahoo.com/activity?show=JhoXVdhAaa

and the guys here:
http://www.sankakucomplex.com
http://www.4chan.org

Normally I would just brush this off as some nonsense, but as I search around the net more, I am finding that the beliefs and political views of most "people who like Japan" to be almost on opposite ends. Some of them also have accounts on stormfront too pleaing its community to accept Japan into their collective.

What makes Japan attract almost exclusively these kinds of people? Not so much the obsession with anime, but obsession with their political views.

To put it bluntly, I do like Japan it alot of what it has to offer. However I am not a "far right activist" like many Japanophiles which I come across commonly online.

To keep this thread from going to long, I will just say that I don't think I " sit down just chill out for a drink" with this guy:

http://answers.yahoo.com/activity?show=JhoXVdhAaa

Am I an outsider in the realm of Japan-fandom then? Assuming if most "people-who-like-Japan" are like that?

I always thought of meeting people perhaps even in person to expand my knowledge of Japan, share experience and tour together with people who have similar hobbies. Now I am unsure about wanting to associate with japanophiles, as I have friends of different backgrounds, many whom japanophiles hate or want eliminated. My concern is a disproportionate proportion of people who like japan tend to hold these views.

Is there a reason why moderate people or apolitical people don't have interest or not attracted to japan?

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I think because Asia is a strange continent with many strange people with [i]many[/i] strange habits, people who love Asian countries are generally also strange people. I'm cool though. Then again, I stopped being like "Japan total kawaii ~^_^~" when I was about 12, so that would explain a lot of things.

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I find this slightly difficult to give an answer to, since there are multiple questions being asked, all not the same. As such, I'll have to ask for some clarifications on some things.

First of all, what's your thesis and what observations support it? From what you've written and linked to, I can make some assumptions on what it might be, the most obvious being this: Japanophiles tend to have political ideals associated with the far right, usually involving nationalism and jingoism. But that doesn't quite square with that Yahoo link, since that person just seems to be a naive and brazenly ignorant fellow who shows no coherent political leanings. Nevertheless, your post makes it clear that you're concerned with a political outlook that some people find attractive. You'll have to tell me if my statements are close to what you're hypothesizing.

The other problem I have is figuring out exactly what is meant by your use of the term "Japanophile". Of course, some links to examples were given, but giving examples isn't the same as actually giving a workable definition of what something means. All you provided were links to a questionable profile and two sites. Again, I can guess they refer to something like "Japan total kawaii ~^_^~", but maybe not.

Moreover, you've linked to examples which might be [i]atypical[/i] of whatever a Japanophile may be. Is there something about anime/manga and modern Japanese pop-culture that somehow commits a person to ultranationalism and xenophobia (both of which are elements found in far-right politics that lean heavily towards fascism). I'm skeptical if that's being implied here. However, if you're asking if there's something essential or compelling about Japanese culture, society, politics, etc. that attracts certain people, then perhaps there is. But I would argue that it might not be something that's peculiar to Japan alone. You've mentioned Stormfront, and I have little doubt that some the people there have an historical interest in late19th early 20th century Germany. Maybe some idolize Mussolini's pre-WWII Italy and its heavy handed tactics of political suppression. Maybe some look back to American history itself and nod with misty-eyed approval at the line in the Declaration of Independence that speaks of "the merciless Indian savages, whose known rule of warfare, is undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions." Maybe some are just unemployed beer-swilling jerks. Basically, I don't think this is strictly a Japanese problem concerning the "Japanophile".

The last thing I'll comment on is what is meant by "this community". Is this community [i]this[/i] actual community, or those you've linked to? Perhaps a collection of everything? Okay, otakuboards.com isn't 4chan.org or sankakucomplex.com. (Stormfront is something altogether different.) They're all aspects of a broader community loosely joined together by a common admiration of Japanese culture (itself broadly defined to be close to what you're getting at). Some people really love Miku Hatsune and don't care less about Sino-Japanese territorial disputes. Others also love all almost all things Korean, but stop short of putting up Kim Jong-un posters on their wall. In a community so broadly understood, you'll find people with clashing ideals, rather than there being one homogenous heap. To understand "this community" as being exemplified by those linked examples and in terms of far-right activism, well, that's quite unfair to those of us who aren't prone to political jingoism and hawkish foreign policy.

Unless I'm sure I know what's meant by "Japanophile" and "this community" and how they relate to your hypothesis (again, unstated), I find it difficult to give clearer answers to the questions you ask. If the community you write of is populated by jingoistic chauvinists, and that's not your cup of tea, then maybe it's a good thing to not belong to it. But keep in mind, those examples don't define the larger community out there.
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[font=georgia,serif]possible special snowflake alert.[/font]
[font=georgia,serif]continue to monitor this thread for further updates.[/font]

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[quote name='OMNOMNOMALY'][font=georgia,serif]possible special snowflake alert.[/font]
[font=georgia,serif]continue to monitor this thread for further updates.[/font][/quote]

[FONT=Calibri]Hey now. Don't be mean to [COLOR=DarkRed]Pleiades[/COLOR].[/FONT] Edited by Allamorph

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