Nov 6



A story just published in the new December issue of VANITY FAIR chronicles the way Japanese kawaii, or super-cuteness, has conquered America:

Roland Kelts (Osaka-shi, 1998-99), author of Japanamerica, is quoted fairly liberally via an interview with Vanity Fair writer Jim Windolf.  Here’s a sample:

“There’s no doubt that cuteness has been a part of the Japanese aesthetic since the postwar years,” says Roland Kelts, the author of the 2006 book Japanamerica: How Japanese Pop Culture Has Invaded the U.S. “One theory, which has been proposed by a lot of Japanese artists and academics, is that, after the humiliation and emasculation of Japan in the postwar years, Japan developed this quasi-queer position of ‘little brother’ or ‘little boy.’ If you become ‘little brother’ or ‘little boy,’ the only way you can get big brother’s or fat man’s attention is by being so cute or puppy-like that he has to take care of you.”

Roland also recently returned to Japan from a book promotion tour in Korea.

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