la_vie_noire: (Default)
[personal profile] la_vie_noire
Wait. Why hasn't nobody told me there is going to be a live-action movie of Fumi Yoshinaga's Ooku?

And no spoilers, please. This is someone who longs for the manga, but still is incapable to access to it. But she will.
dhobikikutti: earthen diya (yuletide)
[personal profile] dhobikikutti
[personal profile] inkstone said in her post: "My wish for Yuletide is that people who offer to write in anime and manga (and manhwa and manhua, if there are manhua being offered) fandoms, and do write in those fandoms, to please do so with respect to the source's host culture."

She was prompted by [personal profile] wistfuljane's observation:
I've noticed some trends in animanga fanworks that left me rather perplexed:
  • the prevalent of historical AUs set in Regency or some other British historical periods and the rather absence of historical AUs set in say Heian, Edo or some other Japanese or Asian periods;
  • the prevalent of stories based on European fairy tales or folklores and the rather lack of stories based on Japanese or Asian fairy tales or folklores;
  • the prevalent of stories centering around (party) games or activities that either originated in America or more common there and the rather absence of stories centering around (party) games or activities that originated in Japan/Asia or more common there

Then, of course, there's the rather lack of anime vids set to non-English songs. (And the more nitpicking stuffs like glaringly out-of-place English sayings or phrases in fanfic.)

[ profile] the_willow made the following post in response which sums up one of the critical problems inherent in Western and White consumption of manga and anime:
Part of the reason the Japanese elements disappear is that the Japanese elements are seen, by a lot of those consuming the animan(ga/hwa/hua) as fantasy elements already; due to them seeing the characters as white[...] Because anime and manga are brought to the US to be consumed, and marketers have determined and actually have a stake in perpetuating 'everyone in the world is just like the US, but with a few quirks'; because it makes things simple and the simpler a thing is, the more easily it can be consumed[...]
Thus essential Asianess, whether it is Japaneseness, Koreaness, Chineseness, and others, etc... is presented as similar to Midwesterness, East Coastness, Southerness etc... a geographic peculiarity with local legends and quirks that is essentially American.

In comments, [personal profile] zephyrprince makes the point:
I do think there would be some level of difference between English-language fans entering something like Bollywood or K-Drama fandoms en mass though I guess in that watching these texts involves focusing your eyes on actual non-white bodies whereas anime, manga, and videogame characters are animated, drawn, or computer generated. I do think that the claims that all manga/anime characters are white are somewhat racist and inaccurate, but it does seem to make a difference when one is seeing actual Of Color features/phenotypes on flesh-and-blood bodies.

To which [personal profile] franzeska responds:
One thing I notice a lot with manga is that there's plenty in Japanese (though probably a low overall percentage) that makes issues of culture and race inescapable. Anything about immigrants in Japan or that's set other places in Asia or outside of Japan in general tends to make some of that stuff explicit in the text and/or art[...] But that's not what gets translated professionally, and it's usually not what gets scanlated."

As [personal profile] oyceter says, there is a problem "with people who use anime/manga as a type of ghetto pass, like it somehow absolves them of racism, or on the flip side, people who are enamoured of Japan and fetishize Japan and Japanese people".

The western consumption of manga and anime should not take away from the place they hold in their source cultures, nor the chromatic nature of their creators and characters. This is the reason they have been included in our list for the most part (with some exceptions). We would like, though, for you to think about the issues involved in consuming and writing for these sources!

ETA (1 Dec 09): [personal profile] troisroyaumes has an excellent post on the political implications of forming opinions based only on exposure to translated manhwa -
I want you to think about who decides what to translate and why, how they market the translation, and what all that says both about the audience receiving the translation and the people making the decision.[...]Are the conclusions we draw about trends in Japanese literature biased by the authors that get translated? Are those authors representative of the tastes of a particular subsection of Japanese readers--young versus old, male versus female, well-educated versus less-educated, etc.--or are they more representative of our tastes as a English-reading audience?