Friday, September 12, 2008

MSNBC reports on the "sexualized" world of otaku culture

by Chris MaGee

Patrick Macias, author, Japanese pop culture expert ad editor and chief of Otaku USA Magazine has posted a link on his blog to an article by MSNBC contributing writer Brian Alexander's article on the "moral-free zone" of sexual images in anime and manga. While it's an interesting read for anyone interested in Japanese culture the thrust of the article still makes me bristle a bit, especially after having caught Barbet Schroeder's "Inju: The Beast in the Shadows" this week at TIFF. Both Schoeder's film (you can read my review of it here) adn Alexander's article, titled "Anime erotic subculture goes mainstream" seem to be playing into the Japanese as the sex-and-violence-crazed "other" that has been making the rounds for years, or possibly decades now.

Sure, Japan has given the world such kinky gifts as maid cafés, lolita fashion, bukkake and vacuum porn and provocative cosplay (above), but it still puzzles me as to why we here in the West like to focus solely on these more colourful aspects of contemporary Japan. I'm feeling a future rant article coming on in the near future... but for now click here to read the entire article.

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