講演・口頭発表等

国際会議
2011年4月2日

The Concept of kami in Japanese Animation and Comics: Late 20th Century Japanese Thought and Popular Culture

The Association for Asian Studies Annual Conference 2011
  • Yusuke Suzumura

記述言語
英語
会議種別
口頭発表(一般)
主催者
The Association for Asian Studies
開催地
Hawaii Convention Center (Hawaii)

What is Shintoism in late 20th century Japan? Can it be seen or experienced in popular culture, in comics and animation for example? The main purpose of this presentation is to examine the influence of Shinto in Japanese animation or comic after 1980’s. Shinto is a folk religion like attitude in Japan which expresses respects to gods and an ancestor, and enshrines them. One of the most inmportant characteristic of Shinto is well known, it is polytheistic in which a large number of gods exists. In this presentation, several significant works that featured the polytheistic element will be analyzed especially the influence of Shinto-like attitude on the concept of kami (god). I argue that this concept does not have religious meaning in most animations or comics. One animation, for example Densetu kyoshin Ideon (1980) uses the term kami or god in the title, but there is no religious meaning but an implication like “something passes human understanding”. In Kaze no Tani no Naushika (1984) there is a weapon named kyoshinhei, but its character is not a god but a huge artificial life form with god-like power. My conclusion tries to show that in Japanese animations or comics the concept kami is used in relation to some sort of symbol or cryptograph creation in the story. It implies that authors or producers of animations or comics appropriate the Shinto structure, the polytheistic attitude in their works, but one is not sure whether they are conscious of the religious significance.

リンク情報
URL
http://www.asian-studies.org/absts/2011abst/abstract.asp?Session_ID=494&year=2011&Category_ID=1&area=Interarea%2FBorder%2DCrossing&Meeting_ID=20