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View Diary: This is not your father's labor market (84 comments)

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  •  That's the perverse thing about that old system.. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dnta, leftangler

    ...pass the ENTRANCE EXAM for Keio or Todai University, and your future was assured. It matters not if you graduate, your transcript doesn't matter either, the breakpoint is either passing or failing the entrance exam. It is quite literally the ultimate "high stakes" test. People think our High School Exit Exams are "high stakes" tests. People think the tests given to Elementary School kids to determine whether their school is a "failing school" or not are "high stakes."

    No, back in the "Japan, Inc." days, the rest of your life and where you get sorted in the Japanese system of socio-economic class had to do with the college entrance exam. Once you got into college you basically could slack off, and college life engendered a great deal of "natsukashii" (nostalgic) feelings because it was the last time you could be carefree before becoming a sarariman (salaried man, usually a low end or middle manager) and basically working the rest of your life away until retirement.

    Many anime and manga have a lot to do with "exam hell" and what people who don't pass, (the term is "ronin" or masterless samurai) have to do to cram for a second sitting for the entrance exam. The protagonist in "Chobits" is a cram-school attendee. "Love Hina" is about a "ronin" living in an apartment building near a major university who is cramming for the next sitting of the exam, and surrounded by pretty college girls. "Welcome to the NHK" is a story about a "hikky" guy who retreats into a solitary, shut-in lifestyle after failing his entrance exam. His neighbor in his cheap apartment building (Cheap is relative in Japan btw) is also a "hikki" and obsessed with anime shows featuring impossibly beautiful, scarily young girls who are sexualized and given "magical girl" identity.

    This is an element I didn't go into in my initial analysis: both women and men have become consumers of a pop culture of sexuality that is quite twisted, to be frank. A thoroughly frank discussion of this is not really appropriate for this forum, but suffice it to say that the ideal woman in "ero" media for young men doesn't look womanly at all, but decidedly girlish until she's nude; and the ideal man in "Yaoi doujinshi" media for women is not interested in women at all, but in other men as impossibly beautiful and willowy as he is.

    In both cases, since these girls and boys are absolutely unrealistic, they are drawn, not depicted in live action. These "2D" representations, in games, manga (comics) and anime (animation) have become the ideal of female and male sexuality. So as well as not having negotiated gender roles, these "2D" sex objects get in the way of negotiating sexuality under new socioeconomic conditions. Both men and women have completely unrealistic concepts of sexuality and what is a turn-on. Real women and real men are, by comparison, quite banal.

    In defeat, defiance. -- Winston Churchill
    The "tax deal" is a s**tty deal.

    by Pris from LA on Tue Jan 04, 2011 at 09:52:21 AM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  Damn (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Pris from LA

      have you considered submitting some of these ideas for a book? I have kinda noticed the whole animie thing from afar, have caught some glimpses of Metropolis on cable. You clearly are on to something. Write it up.

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