Department Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University College of Asia Pacific Studies Position Professor
|Research paper (Other)
|Animation and ‘Otherness’: The Politics of Gender, Racial and Ethnic Identity in the World of Japanese Anime
|This dissertation looks at representations in the fantasy world of Japanese animation, known as anime, and conceptualizes how media representations contribute both visually and narratively to articulating or re-articulating cultural “otherness” to establish one’s own subjectivity. In so doing, this study combines textual and discourse analyses, taking perspectives of cultural studies, gender theory, and postcolonial theory, which allow us to unpack complex mechanisms of gender, racial/ethnic, and national identity constructions.
I analyze tropes for identity articulation in a select group of Disney folktale-saga style animations, and compare them with those in anime directed by Miyazaki Hayao. While many critics argue that the fantasy world of animation recapitulates the Western anglo-phallogocentric construction of the “other,” as is often encouraged by mainstream Hollywood films, my analyses reveal more complex mechanisms that put Disney animation in a different light.
Note: PhD dissertation for University of British Columbia