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Modern and Traditional Japanese Culture: The Psychology of Buddhism, Power Rangers, Masked Rider, Manga, Anime and Shinto. 在日イギリス人男性による日本文化論.

Friday, June 18, 2010


Just one Page of the Book of Television Personalities

Just one Page of the Book of Television Personalities
Originally uploaded by timtak
In "The Image Factory: Fads and Fashions in Japan," Donald Ritchie points out that Japanese culture pours out images, fads, fashions and famous faces at a rate unknown in any other culture (or at least the West). It is a good book, but I find the tone of his work to be rather belittling.

Donald Ritchie does not mention that his ouvre, and indeed the very book he is writing, forms part of the output of that which might be called "the idea factory."Westerners, western culture pours out ideas, at a rate unknown in any other culture.

Every Japanese woman and her uncle becomes a "talent" (television personalty) if they make the big time. They get to have their face in the thick book of television personalities.

On the other hand, every Western man, or at least academic and his aunt, pump out an ism, that fill bookshelves in Japan.

The Japanese produce almost no ideas. Zen is the idea to end all izms.

Westerners produce surprisingly few fads, compared to Japan.

Donald Ritchie does not, I fear, quite make it into "the fountain of isms" but his theories of Japanese film may have made it into the encyclopedia of Western thought.

Japanese self-identify with their visual self expressions, especially their faces.

Westerners self-identify with their narratives, with their phono centric words, especially their names and the "isms" that they have coined. (You can tell I am a Westerner, trying herein to coin an "ism"). What shall I call it? Takemotoism?

Mohoushoism? =)

Great post!
Thank you. And thank you for the link from your blog.

I don't know what Mouhoushouism is though. Oh! A suggestion for takemototheory.I wonder what the Kanji are. 模倣象主義 maybe.
Wow...I hadn't figured that much out yet, only that the little girl was probably me. (I omitted that she looked like me.) Thank you for that.

You're more than welcome for the linkage. This is a great blog!
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This blog represents the opinions of the author, Timothy Takemoto, and not the opinions of his employer.