Super-powered heroines and submissive men: the importance of design and pop culture in Japan and the shifting representations of women in Japanese anime

Cole, Amelia (2015) Super-powered heroines and submissive men: the importance of design and pop culture in Japan and the shifting representations of women in Japanese anime. BA dissertation, University of Portsmouth.

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    Abstract

    Japanese animation otherwise known a anime, has become increasingly popular in both its country of origin, and in thee West, becoming it's own distinct form of animation in the 1960s. This dissertation will aim to explore how anime as a form of popular culture has represented and reflected images and ideas of women, and if these representations show any shifts or changes to the positions and representations of women in Japan. Paul Wells suggests that animation has been largely dismissed in film histories, and that this prevents proper discussion of representation. I want to establish animation, and anime, as a medium that deserves discussion.
    Using research from various sources, I aim to establish social and historical context on the positions and images of women in Japanese society, and analyse different representations of women in anime to suggest that Japan's old, traditional gender values are shifting.
    The first chapter will explore a brief but expansive history on the position of Japanese women in society, and show how a rise in feminism only occurred recently, linking in with the rise of popular culture, and anime. The second chapter explores representations of women across popular anime genres to establish what different images of women have been created, and how they reflect on society. There are some anime texts that are particularly interesting in their representations, which will lead onto my final chapter, an a11alysis of Kill la Kill, a contemporary anime that will be explored in terms of design to establish it as an anime that completely subverts rigid code of gender in Japan.
    Animation is a complex concept that is hard to define, but Japan's distinct form of animation serves to reflect their culture and society, and can provide contemporary images and highlight shifts in women's equality.

    Item Type: Dissertation
    Departments/Research Groups: Faculty of Creative and Cultural Industries > School of Media and Performing Arts
    Depositing User: Jane Polwin
    Date Deposited: 23 Dec 2016 10:07
    Last Modified: 23 Dec 2016 10:07
    URI: http://eprints.port.ac.uk/id/eprint/22726

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