Author: Zakary Wilkins

The Phenomenon Of KIMI NO NA WA: A Study of the International Success of Anime and Japanese Media

The East Asian country of Japan has a modern history of what can be called an identity crisis. In 1873, the country abolished Japanese and declared English to be the national language.[1] While this has obviously changed since then, the country has always had an obsession with westernization. In his book, Return to Asia? Japan in the Global Audio-Visual Market, Koichi Iwabuchi describes Japan’s modern history as “a cultural hybridization through the processes of ‘Westernization’, ‘Japanization’, and ‘de-Asianization.” In the pre-War period, Japan’s westernization attempts coexisted with an attempt at Asianism: emphasizing solidarity with fellow Asian countries against Western imperialism. This was an issue as Japan was not only distrusted by Western powers, but they were distrusted by their fellow Asian countries who saw the island country as territorial. Therefore, while Japan was attempting to unify Eastern and Western civilizations and societal practices, the country failed to identify as either. In the nineties, Japan adopted the “New Asainism” principle, establishing itself as a strong economic factor within the continent of Asia. This was an important …

Zakary Wilkins is a rising senior and a Cinema Studies major.