a question for the people who live (or lived) in Japan

Discuss about travelling to or living in another country.
the_spin0ff
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a question for the people who live (or lived) in Japan

Post by the_spin0ff » Jul 21st, '06, 21:07

since I only stayed in Japan for a week, I don't think I have enough answers to answer the question I'm about to ask.

So for all the people who live (or lived) there:

Have you guys experienced any racism over there? Has it been part of your everyday life over there? If so, do you just ignore it, or has it got to the point that you want(ed) to move back to your home country?

Neji-sama
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Post by Neji-sama » Jul 21st, '06, 21:24

I'd like to know aswell, considering future visits in Japan.

Btw how you like it this far?

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Post by the_spin0ff » Jul 21st, '06, 21:30

I really enjoyed my stay in Japan, perhaps the best week of my life there. I plan on going back next year.

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Post by Neji-sama » Jul 21st, '06, 21:59

Ohh, you were there for one week, I somehow managed to miss that sentance :P. But that's good to hear, I hope I will someday be able to travel to Japan =)

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Post by kotaeshiranaihito » Jul 22nd, '06, 00:01

I heard from people who live there that you usually experience racism when people find out that you live/want to live there. If you're just visiting you will have a great time.

But the racism there isn't like people throwing rocks at you and telling you to leave their country, it's more like no one will sit next to you on the train, some people won't rent apartments to you, you will be turned away from onsens, you will probably not get hired for a job if there is a japanese person as good (or a little worse) applying for the same job, and you will have some relationship troubles.

This is what I hear from most people, but I can not confirm it for myself. And once again it pretty much only applies to people who live there, visitors are treated like gods I am told.

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Post by Thuan » Jul 25th, '06, 23:20

I stayed in Japan for nearly ten months. Didn't experience any visible racism. Which doesn't mean that there isn't any racism in Japan. People treat you different. From what I've heard, this will never change. People will always regard you as a guest, a foreigner in their country.

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Post by kaname » Jul 26th, '06, 12:56

racism is not a one country thing. it unfortunately exists in individuals rather than as a national thing...which isnt to say that individuals who rise to the top in their nations cannot produce a nationalistic fervor that causes incidents of racism from individuals who otherwise might never have acted so.

My wife tells me (japanese born and bred btw) that in japan it can be quite overt although for the most part it manifests in ways that have already been stated (wont sit next to you on public transportation etc) Rarely is it one of violence although she remembers people talking about those baka niguros and getting to the point where she was afraid they might get violent.

I have never been the object in Japan of overt racism (I am a good old american mutt...america the melting pot and i am the stew) but i have been looked past in favor of an obvious native....hmmm...maybe that was overt but it wasnt violent as it could have been if it had been here where i live. the beauty of being where i am at least when i was growing up was that i could be threatened and get into fights with whites cuz i wasnt a perfect white anglo...and with blacks cuz i was white...go figure.

It seems that in my area it goes in cycles I wonder if that is true in Japan and elsewhere.
I have found that people are a lot more tolerant now than when i was younger, but i grew up hating name calling as I was the object of it on an almost daily basis growing up. They never knew what to make of me-
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Post by Kamui6 » Jul 26th, '06, 13:10

Why do I get the feeling that my carmel skin will cause me issues if i ever visted. Hmmm, Hell i won't even visit certain parts of the US, which is making me think, it wouldn't be worth the trip if that's what to be expected. :-(

That's just disappointing to think about.
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kaname
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Post by kaname » Jul 26th, '06, 13:26

Kamui6 wrote:Why do I get the feeling that my carmel skin will cause me issues if i ever visted. Hmmm, Hell i won't even visit certain parts of the US, which is making me think, it wouldn't be worth the trip if that's what to be expected. :-(

That's just disappointing to think about.
I dont think that would happen kamui for just visiting especially in places like tokyo or osaka or kyoto (okinawa might be iffy but only because of the american military presence). the japanese for the most part are very welcoming of guests but as i said like anywhere in the wortld there are always individuals who can be boors
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Post by Romance » Jul 26th, '06, 13:44

There is racism, like kotaeshiranaihito described, such things can happen.

But if you give it a thought, how well welcomed are asian people here in the states by the mainstream? Ask a class of teenagers what they think about japan and they will just laugh and say "i dont care about **** japs"

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Post by kotaeshiranaihito » Jul 26th, '06, 13:52

Romance wrote:There is racism, like kotaeshiranaihito described, such things can happen.

But if you give it a thought, how well welcomed are asian people here in the states by the mainstream? Ask a class of teenagers what they think about japan and they will just laugh and say "i dont care about **** japs"

That is complete BS. If such a thing happens it's definitely an anomaly, not mainstream. The mainstream kids/teenagers either like japan because of anime or video games, or are completely indifferent about it.

Asian people are actually very well accepted in the states. In one generations they accomplished a lot. They have their own towns, they own/run businesses, and their children are going to some of the best schools here (stuyvetson HS and NYU here in NYC for example). It's like Akutsu Maya said "the clever and hard working will be rewarded, the rest will have to spend their lives complaining" or something like that.

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Post by 20centuryboy » Jul 26th, '06, 13:59

Been yelled at by a drunk oyaji in the street once. He grabed my shirt and say something I couldn't understand.

For the most common, it's as said before, just isolation.
Kamui6 wrote:Why do I get the feeling that my carmel skin will cause me issues if i ever visted. Hmmm, Hell i won't even visit certain parts of the US, which is making me think, it wouldn't be worth the trip if that's what to be expected.

That's just disappointing to think about.
I 'm afraid it would be like this for most countries in asia. :|

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Post by Thuan » Jul 26th, '06, 14:01

I'm Vietnamese btw (Vietnamese German). And I never had any problems. And I was living in a town with a population of 217.000 people. Countryside. Conservative. Next to no foreigners. Most tourists are from Japan (and a few from Taiwan!).

You don't have to worry about anything imho.

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Post by whowhatme » Jul 26th, '06, 14:03

I'm in Japan right now, but since i'm chinese and look japanese, people don't care until i open my mouth. then they realize that i'm actually not japanese, and then i dunno, i can sort of get a visible change in behavior, but it's not really so overt as they immediately walk away. but definitely a change.

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Post by Romance » Jul 26th, '06, 14:05

gt
Last edited by Romance on Jul 26th, '06, 14:06, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by Romance » Jul 26th, '06, 14:05

Romance wrote:
kotaeshiranaihito wrote:
Romance wrote:There is racism, like kotaeshiranaihito described, such things can happen.

But if you give it a thought, how well welcomed are asian people here in the states by the mainstream? Ask a class of teenagers what they think about japan and they will just laugh and say "i dont care about **** japs"

That is complete BS. If such a thing happens it's definitely an anomaly, not mainstream. The mainstream kids/teenagers either like japan because of anime or video games, or are completely indifferent about it.

Asian people are actually very well accepted in the states. In one generations they accomplished a lot. They have their own towns, they own/run businesses, and their children are going to some of the best schools here (stuyvetson HS and NYU here in NYC for example). It's like Akutsu Maya said "the clever and hard working will be rewarded, the rest will have to spend their lives complaining" or something like that.
Nah, i made a survey in my school here in californa, 2000 students, 50 of them knew about japan, hundreds wrote that they think japanese are sick after finding strange things on the net and laughed and the rest just answered "no". Sure there are groups who like anime, but a majority? lol please.

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Post by kaname » Jul 26th, '06, 14:22

kotaeshiranaihito wrote:
Romance wrote:There is racism, like kotaeshiranaihito described, such things can happen.

But if you give it a thought, how well welcomed are asian people here in the states by the mainstream? Ask a class of teenagers what they think about japan and they will just laugh and say "i dont care about **** japs"

That is complete BS. If such a thing happens it's definitely an anomaly, not mainstream. The mainstream kids/teenagers either like japan because of anime or video games, or are completely indifferent about it.

Asian people are actually very well accepted in the states. In one generations they accomplished a lot. They have their own towns, they own/run businesses, and their children are going to some of the best schools here (stuyvetson HS and NYU here in NYC for example). It's like Akutsu Maya said "the clever and hard working will be rewarded, the rest will have to spend their lives complaining" or something like that.
I agree that many teens in the mainstream are either indifferent or are in love with things japanese...however...in poorer areas(compton/crenshaw/nyc/washington dc) blacks resent korean shop owners...in texas(galveston) white fisherman had battles with vietnamese fishermen...i dont know if thats racism or just resentment that opportunities are being taken advantage of by newcomers.

I also agree that many asians succeed very well in the first and second generation, my wife is a prime example she has risen to be an Executive VP with a billion dollar a year corporation (DCI..Discovery Communications Inc--the discovery channel, the learning channel etc...). Our son Kenji's first girlfriend arrived from Hong Kong 8 years ago. Within a year she was fluent in English a straight A student through High School she earned a full scholardship to the University Of Chicago to study pscychology. U of C is the preminent school for Psychology in the country. Her family fob (fresh off the boat) nows owns a very successful buiness from which they have ALREADY retired.
Unfortunately that is not true for all just as it isnt true for everyone that was born here.
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Post by hashiru » Jul 26th, '06, 14:46

i have a friend who went to japan as an exchange student. She told me she has seen racism towards the chinese background students. Students would not get along, isolation... It's not like all the students feel this way, but she says quite a many do.

And she says that a lot of girls in Japan have a favoritism towards caucasion ppl XD.

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Post by kotaeshiranaihito » Jul 26th, '06, 17:08

Romance wrote:
Romance wrote:
kotaeshiranaihito wrote:

That is complete BS. If such a thing happens it's definitely an anomaly, not mainstream. The mainstream kids/teenagers either like japan because of anime or video games, or are completely indifferent about it.

Asian people are actually very well accepted in the states. In one generations they accomplished a lot. They have their own towns, they own/run businesses, and their children are going to some of the best schools here (stuyvetson HS and NYU here in NYC for example). It's like Akutsu Maya said "the clever and hard working will be rewarded, the rest will have to spend their lives complaining" or something like that.
Nah, i made a survey in my school here in californa, 2000 students, 50 of them knew about japan, hundreds wrote that they think japanese are sick after finding strange things on the net and laughed and the rest just answered "no". Sure there are groups who like anime, but a majority? lol please.

A survery is nothing. The only statistic I truly follow is this one: "85% of statistics are false, or biased, either way are not reliable and do not give a representation of the truth".

I usually find that once you see all the research behind the statistics, you see that most of it is false. I would be interested what questions you asked, who you asked, what year this was and many other things.
hashiru wrote:And she says that a lot of girls in Japan have a favoritism towards caucasion ppl pinch.
That is only true for those visiting. Many think of caucasian men as a fashion accessory more than anything. They show you off to their friends, have fun with you, but once you're out of style they move on to the next one. Like I said visitors have a great time, the ones who have it a little tougher are the ones who want to live there.

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Post by pwner4once » Jul 26th, '06, 17:23

hm speaking of personal experience, i think some might be racist.
I live in usa and last year. i went to back to china riding a japanese company airline. this happened at the ticket check out. I remember when the "ticket clerk", not exactly sure what the position shoudl be called, checked an old japanese man in front of me. she gave him a bit smile and was really polite. And yes, she is japanese. however when she greeted me, it was just an cold face with no emotion. I really felt bad after that because being a 17yrs old. I didn't really think racism is still that big of an issue. but apparently, some ppl takes it seriously.

on the hard side, she was pretty too. :lol

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Post by aznkether » Jul 27th, '06, 19:44

I was in Japan for three weeks during this summer, 1 week in Fukuyama, near Hiroshima, 1 week in Kyoto, and 1 week in Tokyo.

There is not really such a racism there as more as there is just a more wary watch of foreigners. It is subtle, but noticable, especially if you are the one being outcasted.

But for the general part, Japanese people don't go out of their way to make foreigners miserable, but sometimes they refuse their entrance to an establishment, or might try to take advantage of your money because you don't know their customs, etc., but it is very low key compared to the States.

I, myself, am Chinese American, and I had learnt about 1 years of Japanese, so I was never subject to any rejections, and I even passed as a native Japanese in certain establishments, but when I was with my friends that were obviously not Japanese, there were a few times when they were denied entry.

Also, being Caucasion is not really a big deal as it's made out to be. Maybe we only think it is not a big deal in the States because we already have the biggest melting pot of clashing cultures in the world, but if you go to a country which is a lot more isolated, such as Japan, people would definitely be interested in the cultures of foreign countries. kotaeshiranaihito said it right.

You'd be suprised to know the more common images that people from the States have in Japan. And it's not good.

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Post by nikochanr3 » Jul 28th, '06, 12:31

whowhatme wrote:I'm in Japan right now, but since i'm chinese and look japanese, people don't care until i open my mouth. then they realize that i'm actually not japanese, and then i dunno, i can sort of get a visible change in behavior, but it's not really so overt as they immediately walk away. but definitely a change.
its called the realization they cannot talk to you. :lol
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Post by Pandemonium » Jul 29th, '06, 15:13

Better learn some Japanese quick smart boy.
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Post by Tyrane » Jul 30th, '06, 03:14

kotaeshiranaihito wrote:it's more like no one will sit next to you on the train, some people won't rent apartments to you, you will be turned away from onsens, you will probably not get hired for a job if there is a japanese person as good (or a little worse) applying for the same job
Sounds like segregation of blacks and whites. I know if you pulled most of that stuff here in Australia you'd face legal action, especially if you refused a patron from your establishment for beaing Asian

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Post by Pandemonium » Jul 31st, '06, 10:14

It's not like many Asians in Australia really care, a lot of us in Melbourne travel in groups who sit with each other. You only really realise it when you're travelling alone.

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Post by hereford » Jul 31st, '06, 10:52

the amount i've stayed in japan (tokyo) is little over a month. and yes you are treated different if you look different.
its neither good nor bad. but just expect to get stared or in some cases glared at.
also you will either be very loney and avoided or you will have people who are interested in you come up and talk to you.
one night i was wandering around where i was staying and some really nice boys flagged me down to hang out and skate with them.
other times people moved away from me when i would sit near them on the train, or say things about me and my friends thinking you dont know they are talking about you. in these cases it almost better if you didn't know some japanese because its easier to ignore.

just a general rule... be a nice foreigner.
im all tattooed, and drink alot. but im not rowdy and im very polite. the only time im not is when fronted with the "ikura?" question and the drunk old men who try to molest.

this cute little elderly couple got on the train and there was only room for one next to me. so i got up and gave them my seat. they refused at first, that just the japanese way i think, like turning down a compliment. but ended up thanking me deeply for letting them sit together.
every nice foreign person changes some of the attitude that all visitors are loud, rowdy, and impolite drunk assholes.

actually im kinda sad i have so many tattoos because i really wanted to go to an onsen one day =(
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Post by Tyrane » Aug 1st, '06, 12:29

Pandemonium wrote:It's not like many Asians in Australia really care, a lot of us in Melbourne travel in groups who sit with each other. You only really realise it when you're travelling alone.
Yeah. But the Asian population in Australia would be a lot higher than the European population in Japan. The town I live in. there aren't that many Asian people (probably none who were born in Asia) and they blend in very well. I haven't even heard racial slurs used towards them in a joking way, let alone actual racism.

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Post by the_spin0ff » Aug 2nd, '06, 18:04

well, by the sounds of it, I guess the racism in Japan isn't that bad, so its not unbearable.

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Post by Tyrane » Aug 2nd, '06, 18:06

the_spin0ff wrote:well, by the sounds of it, I guess the racism in Japan isn't that bad, so its not unbearable.
Agreed, but certainly enough to cramp the enjoyment of being there.

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Post by kotaeshiranaihito » Aug 2nd, '06, 19:34

Tyrane wrote:
the_spin0ff wrote:well, by the sounds of it, I guess the racism in Japan isn't that bad, so its not unbearable.
Agreed, but certainly enough to cramp the enjoyment of being there.
It's all about what you make of it. For example:

1) no one sits next to you on a train. So what, you know how crowded those things are, you get some breathing room.

2) the "gaijin hunters" only think of you as a fashion accessory. So what, they still hav sex witn you. Have fun and don't get attached.

3) you're rejected from some certain places. So what, go somehwere else.

I never heard visitors complain about Japan-except that fact that it's too expensive.

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Post by blueeyedwolf » Aug 2nd, '06, 21:07

Racism is pretty obvious in Japan, but it all depends on where you go. I actually lived/grew up in Japan when I was young, mostly in the Tokyo/Chiba area. As a child I had to get used to all the eyes on me because I was different. I just stood out like a sore thumb to them.

In school I would get the cold shoulder from everyone....except for the teachers of course. This was mainly because I couldn't communicate with them. I was thrown in to a regular public school with no English support. But eventually they started opening up when I was beginning to speak their langugage. I found that most times it's just that they don't know how to communicate with you and you're like a "great gaijin" (like that's suppose to be scary). Of course not all Japanese people are and were like that though.

I found that where I grew up the people were a bit more on the friendly side though. People were warm feeling just like back home here in Hawaii. But the minute I went out side of my bubble in to Tokyo, the feeling changed. This one guy (gangster/yakuza looking dude) on the train actually got in to my dad's face because he didn't like the fact that a "gaijin" was on HIS train. He was screaming vulgar things at us(not so vulgar in our language, but harsh enough). And little did he know that my dad and I were both fluent in Japanese. So my dad being the nice "gaijin" he is, basically told the guy in Japanese that we could settle the matters at the next stop. That made the guy think twice and he basically turned and went in to a different car. (Thank god he did because everyone around us was afraid he was gonna stab us or something)

I also noticed that if they don't know you're a "gaijin" they pretty much ignore you like everyone else. But once they find out you're a "gaijin" they watch you like a hawk and give you "extra" room on the train. I actually enjoyed being a "gaijin" at times like that because that meant I wouldn't get sardined.:P

I just wanted to say, all in all things have changed in Japan over the last few years. I feel Japan has opened up a bit more to the "gaijin" population. Of course as someone has mentioned, as long as you're traveling they're cool and welcoming to you. But the minute they find out you're wanting to stay there, they freak. My parents who still live in Japan are still encountering endless problems with neighbors that don't like "gaijins". It's really sad, but they continuously are friendly "gaijins" no matter what.(it's kind of like they're being more Japanese than the natives) If you do end up living in Japan, I'd recommend staying in the outskirts of a city. The people are more relaxed and less prejudice....just speaking from experience.

Well I should end it here before it turns into a novel. :salut:

*goes back to translations*

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Post by the_spin0ff » Aug 3rd, '06, 10:43

kotaeshiranaihito wrote:
Tyrane wrote:
the_spin0ff wrote:well, by the sounds of it, I guess the racism in Japan isn't that bad, so its not unbearable.
Agreed, but certainly enough to cramp the enjoyment of being there.
It's all about what you make of it. For example:

1) no one sits next to you on a train. So what, you know how crowded those things are, you get some breathing room.

2) the "gaijin hunters" only think of you as a fashion accessory. So what, they still hav sex witn you. Have fun and don't get attached.

3) you're rejected from some certain places. So what, go somehwere else.

I never heard visitors complain about Japan-except that fact that it's too expensive.
exactly. Just look on the bright side of things, and you'll be fine.

blueeyedwolf, do you think japanese people are more xenophobic then racist when it comes to foreigners living in Japan?

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heyesssss

Post by tokyohoney » Aug 3rd, '06, 16:07

is there any racism toward the chinese people in japan? just curious

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Re: heyesssss

Post by kotaeshiranaihito » Aug 3rd, '06, 19:35

tokyohoney wrote:is there any racism toward the chinese people in japan? just curious
There is racism to everyone who doesn't fit these criteria:

1) you must be of Japanese ancestry
2) you must have been born in Japan
3) you must speak japanese perfectly

So the answer to your question would be "yes".

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Post by Words of Farewell » Aug 3rd, '06, 22:57

blueeyedwolf and kotaeshiranaihito described it very fitting I guess. I know a few gaijins that live in Japan (one for almost 26 years now) and they all encountered the problems the tow described. It always a matter off what you do though, most gaijins that try to get into the buisness world or get a typical salaryman job will fail, but in art or media it actually more easy than most expect since your foreign look will be an advantage. I actually was in Japan untill a few days ago and I noticed some very interesting things when I told some people that I'd like to live in Japan, the younger people I met in pubs and bars were very openminded and liked the idea but the more conservative set older people you met in Onsen or Ofuros are exactly the opposite altough it's always a matter of where you are. I guess in Osaka you won't have much problems same goes for the rest of Kansai but of what my friends told me Tokyo and the Chiba area's people seem to be very narrow minded towards gaijins.

In reference to everyday racesim I'd say they always look down onto the chinese and korean parts as well as onto the old barber castes members and most other native related people like the rest off the Ainu and so on. I don't really see why tough and no one was really able to explain that to me, but I guess it's only a matter of time untill the newer more open minded generation will wip out most of those old prejudice.

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Post by kaname » Aug 3rd, '06, 23:15

this has all been very interesting and I had my say earlier but just a side-note.

On the Chinese thing, its interesting that in many of the rural and farming areas of Japan they are finding it harder and harder to keep the young people on the farm, especially the women. Some of the men are now looking to China for wives. Many rural schools are closing as there are no need for them in fact some of them are being turned into centers for the elderly as the populations age and shrink due do the dearth of young familes raising children.
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Post by auroragb » Aug 4th, '06, 03:38

^ Interesting how? Seems fairly logical and is a common phenomenon in industrialized countries...
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Post by kLx » Aug 4th, '06, 04:05

I plan on visiting japan in the next few years, and depending on how the visit goes I may end up living there. Being African american I've seen plenty of racism, but this is in a different country so only time will tell what I'll end up going through.

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Post by blueeyedwolf » Aug 4th, '06, 08:50

the_spin0ff wrote:
blueeyedwolf, do you think japanese people are more xenophobic then racist when it comes to foreigners living in Japan?
This is a hard one to answer. I think that the older generation still feel that way because of WW2, but the younger generation I find have more of an open mind towards "gaijins".
tokyohoney wrote:
is there any racism toward the chinese people in japan? just curious
Yes. I have a few friends that are half Chilnese half Japanese. They said that they were looked down upon by the, what they called "pure-bred", Japanese people because they weren't 100% Japanese. It seems that even though you may be asian, if you're not born Japanese and have another race in you, you're automatically labeled as an outsider...a "gaijin". So most times my friends would hide the fact that they were part Chinese. I heard that Koreans have it worst though. But then again, it all depends on where you go and what your intensions of being there are.
Words of Farewell wrote:
In reference to everyday racesim I'd say they always look down onto the chinese and korean parts as well as onto the old barber castes members and most other native related people like the rest off the Ainu and so on.
Yes, so true. Chinese, Korean, Ainu(natives), Burakumins(untouchables), and Okinawans(Ryukyuans) are all looked down upon by the mainland Japanese race. It's not as bad as back in the day, but I do know many still treat them as the same. It all goes back to the idea of "pure-bred". Somehow they feel that since they are the race of the land that any outsiders are below them. Most Chinese and Korean population migrated to Japan for better work or for a better life. The Ainus were pushed off of their lands and driven up to the harsh lands of Hokkaido (kind of like the American Indians). Burakumins were those that did all the dirty work, like butchering pigs, cleaning outhouses, etc. They were seen as unpure because of the work they did for society. Some of the Burakumins were also outcasts. Those that broke the law were striped from their title and labeled so. They were forced to work and could never redeem themselves...of course this is back in the day. Nowadays, it's very uncommon to hear of them. Most have been in hiding for years and gradually marrying into a non-Burakumin family in order to give their children a better future. Okinawans are well....Japanese but not Japanese. I have a lot of Okinawan friends and they say that they were banned from speaking their native tongue in school. It might have been just at that particular school, but they were forced to learn Japanese as their national language and only allowed to use their native tongue outside of school. And of course they are looked down upon due to the fact that they are multi-raced. WIth all the trading traffic that happened in the day, it's hard to say what their main race is. Of course nowadays it's a bit different but my friend still hides the fact that she's half Okinawan. She tells everyone that she's just "Japanese". I guess it's just the way she was brought up.
kaname wrote:
On the Chinese thing, its interesting that in many of the rural and farming areas of Japan they are finding it harder and harder to keep the young people on the farm, especially the women. Some of the men are now looking to China for wives. Many rural schools are closing as there are no need for them in fact some of them are being turned into centers for the elderly as the populations age and shrink due do the dearth of young familes raising children.
Yes, it's true. It's because women of this generation rather not work their butts off in the fields. They rather live life more comfortably. I think it has to do with how Japan became an industrial country and the influence of the west. Also, many women of Japan rather marry "gaijins" than their own. So this is why the men who take over their family farms are in desparate need of a woman, and so they look to other places like China, Korea, Taiwan and sometimes the Philipines. I've actually seen a documentary on TV in Japan once covering a story like this.
kLx wrote:
I plan on visiting japan in the next few years, and depending on how the visit goes I may end up living there. Being African american I've seen plenty of racism, but this is in a different country so only time will tell what I'll end up going through.
I know that a huge population of Japanese people still have this fright of African Americans. I believe it's because of the image that is portrayed through the media. They see them as being violent and well...as thugs and gangsters. I think this is mainly from MTV and movie influences. As I mentioned above it all goes back to you being different that scares them. It's also because they're not used to seeing African Americans as much as they see White people. I've also heard that they have a lesser chance being hired because of their skin color(no offense). I think it's stupid, but that's just the way they run business in Japan. If you do end up in Japan and eventually live there, all power to you! :mrgreen: And best wishes to you, ne?^^ Ganbatte!

Phew~! This was a long one! I hope what I mentioned helps. If there are any facts you feel were wrong, let me know. I'm not perfect. I'm just speaking from what I've learned or heard from others.

*goes back to translations* :salut:

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Post by auroragb » Aug 4th, '06, 14:33

Well, it's not all bad news for half-Chinese half Japanese. One was just selected as the National Beauty:
http://bishouzyo.yahoo.co.jp/
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Post by siangsaolong » Aug 4th, '06, 14:52

well I'm in Japan for 4months.
I couldn't say anything much but I don't have any experience of racism
I found that if I someone want to talk or speak anything hard to understand.say you are a foreigner then almost all of them will not continue.
It's the truth that Japaneses are suck in English.
I think it's the main reason for them not to talk to foreigner.
If they know that you can speak Japanese they will try to talk to you
and elders in Japan like foreign student.
They talked to me sometimes.
I think racism is about individuals not national.

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Post by the_spin0ff » Aug 5th, '06, 02:58

is their any racism towards filipinos in japan?

and a bit off topic, but is Tokyo really a narrow minded city, or does it depend on the people you meet?

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Post by L u z » Aug 5th, '06, 03:25

I plain on visiting Japan next year, and seeing how it goes maybe live there in the future. I'm Latin, Peruvian to be exact, and have never experince racism in American. So, I was wondering how the Japanese felt towards latin people.

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Post by dead_cute » Aug 5th, '06, 03:59

I'd love to go to Japan but i'd hate be a gaijin( an outsider >_<)

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Post by hkgirl » Aug 28th, '06, 16:08

I plan on visiting Japan in the next couple of years. Its intersting to hear about all of this but I don't think I'm going to let it put me off. I remember when I went to Hong Kong last year, everyone kept telling me that the chinese are very racist and I started getting very apprehensive. While I was there I didn't see it. The african's kept coming up to me and my sister and telling us how racist the chinese were. Maybe they are I don't know. Maybe it was a cultural clash between the Africans (who can be very overpowering) and the chinese. I can only say what I saw and I found the chinese to be very friendly and welcoming but maybe that's because I have an English accent.

We did get stared at, a lot but I didn't let it bother me after the first few times. If you think about when you see a person who looks different don't you stare?

I think if you go out looking for racism you are going to find it. If you go there with an open mind, allow for the cultural differences that there will be and the fact there are idiots in any country you should get along ok.

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Post by shiny plastic » Aug 30th, '06, 00:01

Kamui6 wrote:Why do I get the feeling that my carmel skin will cause me issues if i ever visted. Hmmm, Hell i won't even visit certain parts of the US, which is making me think, it wouldn't be worth the trip if that's what to be expected. :-(

That's just disappointing to think about.
I've visited tokyo for a few days (went to Disney Land!! XD) and I felt a sense of prejudice there because of my darker colored skin(Filipina blood). It wasn't blatantely obvious but I could tell some of the native girls were staring at me and making comments then laughing about it.

Also, the one thing I HATE about Japan is their subways. It took me a few hours to get back from tokyo to Osaka. No one knew how to speak english.

Other than that I loved Japan. The city is so clean and organized it's unbelievable.

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Post by groink » Aug 30th, '06, 00:30

I've visited Japan several times, the last time a few months ago when I visited Yokosuka for work reasons. In all my visits, not once have I experienced racism of any kind. Matter of fact, the people there were a lot nicer to me than the people in Hawaii, believe it or not... I received a lot of "aloha" in Japan.

The first time I visited Japan was when I was 16, during the summer of '83. I competed in an international bowling tournament in Osaka, as a member of the USA junior team. I rolled two 300 games in the tournament, and eventually finished second. Despite my team destroying the entire field, the Japanese were still very friendly to us. It was this pleasant experience that lead me to start appreciating Japan and its culture, and eventually become a japanophile.

I have a somewhat Spanish look with very fair skin. I definitely don't look Asian. I do read Japanese but don't speak the language very well, so I can find my way around as long as the signs are readable. I don't go to onsen or bars, so maybe that's why I haven't experienced any form of racism.

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Post by shirahime » Sep 2nd, '06, 19:46

I was in japan recently and stayed a little less than 1 month. I was homestaying at an old lady's house. The first day she was nice. The second day was normal, not that I notice much of it. But gradually she turned really bad. My six sense telling me that something is wrong and this doesnt feel right but I couldnt point out exactly what was wrong. I just felt that she somehow looked down on me and became colder.
When I red this thread I realize something. On the second day I told her that I like Japan and would like to live here. :unsure:
So racism does exist, most likely among the older generation.
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Post by uun » Sep 11th, '06, 02:21

i tried to read everybody's post to make sure i would comment correctly, but now that i am at the end of the thread i can only say this accurately
if looking american, biggest problem will be other foreigners (if male. middle eastern peoples/other races from america; if female, it can be anybody).
caucasian/african-american are definitely status accessories there like louie v bags imo
i have dated girls that the thought of me moving to japan actually raised their image of me notieceably, so not everyone is gonna be negative about it? some guy friends asked me to move there also. yeah i am saying the older people probably got a problem with it. then again, the japanese don't like japanese that have lived abroad for years either? what's that book called? "they can't go home again", something or other
now about visiting taiwan, that was a very bad idea and i won't be going back. i am avoiding the use of the word never because i am sincerely worried if i say it, then i might have to go again. what a nightmare.
actually, i disliked kyoto enough that i am not interested in going to anyplace in japan else either. just discovering parts in or around tokyo should be enough for me for this lifetime anyway

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Post by fearspooky » Sep 11th, '06, 03:01

hi. im half japanese and american. i was born in japan and ive lived in japan and california, back and forth. i speak japanese close to fluently and gets worse as i stay here in irvine, california. i have about 6 japanese friends over there and ive known them since i was 8 so they are pretty chill with me.

first of all, i think theres more prejudice there than racism. i also think that theres some curiousity. when i was a kindergartener in japan, i used to be treated as an american by my friends. something like "japanese vs american" kinda stuff, but im sure they didnt mean it as a bad thing..

regarding to prejudice there, i think it has grown a little against koreans and chinese because of the yasukuni shrine and book rewriting problems going on with korea and china.

4 years ago,i used to really look like a teenager, fresh from california so i got a lot of stares from people. 2 years ago, i started dressing in a ordinary japanese street fashion style so i got way less stares. the only stares i got this summer, was from old women and men and i usually stared back at them to make them look away, aha. :roll

at times, i get into the japanese mentality with my friends over there and call any foreigner, "gaijin", instead of using "american", or "korean". at rare times, the word "gaijin" can be meant as an offensive thing but i think a lot of people use it because "gaikokujin" is too long to say, and as you all might know, japanese people like to shorten words.

you have to remember that japan is a homogeneous country, 99% consisting of japanese. its not that usual to see a foreigner unless ure in tokyo or other major cities.

anyways. just to tell you, ive never had to face any racism. im planning on living there after i get through college because im just not comfortable living in america.. japan feels more like home to me.

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Post by shiny plastic » Sep 11th, '06, 03:27

I don't get why they're so rude to foreigners. If they came to America for a visit I'm sure most would treat them would respect.
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Post by Aulcard » Sep 11th, '06, 03:55

I havent experienced any racism/prejudice in japan, but my friend has experienced exactly what I had heard previously before coming to Japan. He is in a serious relationship with a japanese woman. Once it became apparent that they were serious and he intended to marry her and he wanted to live in japan, her mother quickly turned from a nice old lady into some kind of evil monster trying to do everything she can to sabotage them and generally make her daughters life a living hell.

Also, @shinyplastic: Your comments about taking several hours to get to osaka from tokyo being a thing you hate make no sense. Even if you catch the shinkansen it will still take a couple of hours just of travel time. 157 minutes from tokyo to shinosaka. It is a long freaking way. Then only 3 minutes to the Umeda subway station. Umeda has the JR and subway stations right next to each other. To make things easier, all JR lines have english text on signs, electronic displays and ticket vending machines. Even the internal osaka subway has english text station names. I seriously dont know how you could have had all that much trouble...

edit: Also, its japan. Of course you cant expect service staff to speak english. It wouldnt be too much trouble to learn the very most basic japanese terms like 'i want to go <someplace>' and 'I dont speak japanese'. Sorry if this post is narky, but your comments just dont make sense to me.

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Post by fearspooky » Sep 11th, '06, 04:22

shiny plastic wrote:I don't get why they're so rude to foreigners. If they came to America for a visit I'm sure most would treat them would respect.
as i have said, japan is 99% japanese. america is more accepting because america is a melting pot of different races in a lot of areas. if you are asian go to idaho or montana and see if you get any stares; my mom did. almost the same thing.

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Post by fearspooky » Sep 11th, '06, 07:12

i asked my mom about why some japanese people might think its weird for a foreigner to live in japan.
she said that people would think like "why would you even want to live in japan, its a boring place?" "why live in japan when u can live in america?" "why live in japan with such a stupid reason..?" (probably geared more towards people who want to live there just because there is anime, jrock, fashion, etc) many japanese people LOVE going to other countries because they think japan is boring or too hot/too cold in the summer/winter.

i also asked why japanese people look down upon japanese people who come back after living abroad. simple answer is, most of them act snobby when they come back. after hearing this, i realized ive seen this myself and i would have to agree with it... i think my dad calls those families staying in america temporarily as.. ex-patriats? im not sure...

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Post by shiny plastic » Sep 11th, '06, 23:16

Aulcard wrote:I havent experienced any racism/prejudice in japan, but my friend has experienced exactly what I had heard previously before coming to Japan. He is in a serious relationship with a japanese woman. Once it became apparent that they were serious and he intended to marry her and he wanted to live in japan, her mother quickly turned from a nice old lady into some kind of evil monster trying to do everything she can to sabotage them and generally make her daughters life a living hell.

Also, @shinyplastic: Your comments about taking several hours to get to osaka from tokyo being a thing you hate make no sense. Even if you catch the shinkansen it will still take a couple of hours just of travel time. 157 minutes from tokyo to shinosaka. It is a long freaking way. Then only 3 minutes to the Umeda subway station. Umeda has the JR and subway stations right next to each other. To make things easier, all JR lines have english text on signs, electronic displays and ticket vending machines. Even the internal osaka subway has english text station names. I seriously dont know how you could have had all that much trouble...

edit: Also, its japan. Of course you cant expect service staff to speak english. It wouldnt be too much trouble to learn the very most basic japanese terms like 'i want to go <someplace>' and 'I dont speak japanese'. Sorry if this post is narky, but your comments just dont make sense to me.
No, it's completely understandable. I don't exatly remember the specific details nor the exact subway but we had a hard time talking to anyone who spoke english. It was mostly our fault not theres'. I've only visited Japan once with no knowledge of Japanese whatsoever.

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Post by pokute » Sep 11th, '06, 23:30

@Aulcard - What you describe is known as "Mother-In-Law Syndrome", and is not exclusively Japanese by any means. It seems to be deeply encoded in the DNA of all females of the human species, a sort of genetic time bomb. I observed it firsthand (from the perspective of the target)...

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Post by doink-chan » Sep 11th, '06, 23:37

pokute - Yup. For that matter, families who don't allow their children to marry foreigners exist all over the world...

Though on another Japan-related board I go to, there was a guy who I shall refer to as "Ghettodoink". He was a huge womanizer who would constantly boink ganguro girls in Shibuya and Harajuku and Roppongi and brag about his exploits, how great he was, and how all Japanese women love him because he is a gaijin. Sadly there are a lot of guys like "Ghettodoink" in Japan who only go there to boink women and treat them like nothing, so then some Japanese people think all foreign men must be like those doinks...-_- Those "Ghettodoinks" ruin it for everyone else...
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Post by Aulcard » Sep 12th, '06, 02:16

@pokute: Ah yeah. I had forgotten about that one. Cant let those evil men come and steal their precious babies away and everything you know... :P But seriously, I also agree with doink-chan. I am sure any existing animosity towards potential mates by the partners parents would only be magnified in the case of an international relationship. I seriously dont know why people have such a problem with their children marrying foreigners. Is it because they consider foreigners somehow inferior and dont want to tarnish their family or something? Or dont think that the partner will give a secure future to their children? Or maybe just that the children will move away to some foreign nation and never see them...? Who knows. Well maybe someone does, but I sure as hell dont. It is all just guessing for me...

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Post by mizune » Sep 12th, '06, 03:18

fearspooky wrote:i asked my mom about why some japanese people might think its weird for a foreigner to live in japan.
she said that people would think like "why would you even want to live in japan, its a boring place?" "why live in japan when u can live in america?" "why live in japan with such a stupid reason..?" (probably geared more towards people who want to live there just because there is anime, jrock, fashion, etc)
my favorite line... :lol

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Post by albertoavena » Sep 12th, '06, 05:07

I agree with that statement :-) My favorite line too..
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Post by fearspooky » Sep 12th, '06, 06:00

Aulcard wrote:@pokute: Ah yeah. I had forgotten about that one. Cant let those evil men come and steal their precious babies away and everything you know... :P But seriously, I also agree with doink-chan. I am sure any existing animosity towards potential mates by the partners parents would only be magnified in the case of an international relationship. I seriously dont know why people have such a problem with their children marrying foreigners. Is it because they consider foreigners somehow inferior and dont want to tarnish their family or something? Or dont think that the partner will give a secure future to their children? Or maybe just that the children will move away to some foreign nation and never see them...? Who knows. Well maybe someone does, but I sure as hell dont. It is all just guessing for me...
im not sure but my moms parents didnt have a problem with her marrying my dad who is originally from minnesota, they wanted her to marry the person she loved. i can understand why they might be open.. my grandpa has always loved speaking and teaching english since he was young. he was a translator for the Japanese Army (i think?) while he stayed in the Philippines during WWII. i guess he also had good experience with the Americans after the war ended. even to this day, he still teaches english to students.
mizune wrote:
fearspooky wrote:i asked my mom about why some japanese people might think its weird for a foreigner to live in japan.
she said that people would think like "why would you even want to live in japan, its a boring place?" "why live in japan when u can live in america?" "why live in japan with such a stupid reason..?" (probably geared more towards people who want to live there just because there is anime, jrock, fashion, etc)
my favorite line... :lol
well i mean its true :/ its always best to research... have complete plans on how and where you are going to live in japan. honestly, if my friends hear from some guy that he wants to live in japan just for anime, not only will they back away, they will really think its clumsy to live in japan just for that. reasons like love for culture, language, city/country lifestyle, or perhaps even teaching english to students/adults, would be good reasons IMO.

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Post by albertoavena » Sep 13th, '06, 06:04

Exactly the same thoughts I have. It's kind of interesting that even Japanese themselves think that. When I was in Japan, I met a friend roughly my age who used to live in California, and I guess he went to High School and all and they had Japanese classes offered. He told me that most of the people in that class wanted to learn Japanese for the anime and manga instead of just learning it for communication. He thought it was kind of dumb too since it's a pretty dumb reason.
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Post by fearspooky » Sep 13th, '06, 07:01

hah i dont think its bad to learn japanese for just anime/manga, im just saying that reason to live in japan should not depend on it.

from wat i think and see, many japanese people automatically label teens/adults otaku because they watch anime and they really back away (if youve seen densha otoko, reaction might be close to the girl who bumps into the main character in the beginning)manga is fine because A LOT of people read manga.

i can personally relate to this.. although ive never met a japanese otaku.. ive met many american otaku here in the states. being in a bus full of japanese exchange students with other anime-crazed people singing some songs from chobbits or inuyasha is pretty... embarassing. lol :whistling:

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Post by Aulcard » Sep 13th, '06, 07:55

How about people who watch ridiculous amounts of Jdrama? That would basically just be someone who watches way too much television. Does it make you an otaku? I didnt think TV-otakus existed.

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Post by auroragb » Sep 13th, '06, 15:13

Aulcard wrote:How about people who watch ridiculous amounts of Jdrama?
would 14 jdramas / season qualify? :unsure: of course, this is in addition to ~10-15 cdramas and 3-4 kdramas over the same period
maybe there are no TV otakus, but there definitely are drama-addicts here :)
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Post by kotaeshiranaihito » Sep 13th, '06, 15:51

there are many different types of otaku. Pretty much, anyone who takes a hobby too far would be considered an otaku. Just in Japan some otaku are accepted, and some aren't. Anime/manga otaku pretty much aren't. video game otaku are a little more accepted (as long as they don't play the moe "gal games") but still not very popular.

Examples of otaku that would probably be accepted are b-boys (breakdance otaku), english otaku (people obsessed with english and the western culture/life), and probably business otaku (like that guy in glasses from densha otoko who always wore suits).

I read on the original densha otoko message board, the people there compared hermes to densha saying she was an otaku as well. Only she was an otaku when it came to english and trendy restaurants. So as you see, they come in all shapes and sizes, society decides which ones are accepted and which are not.

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Post by the_spin0ff » Sep 14th, '06, 01:52

what about Japanophiles? are they more accepted then an otaku?

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Post by Aulcard » Sep 14th, '06, 14:01

What exactly is a 'Japanohphile' ? I have heard the term but dont know specifically what it means.

Are you referring to one of those 'I'm turning Japanese' western people? I dont like them. That is not to say I have a problem with people liking Japan, I love Japan and various Japan-related things. But I like a lot of things, certainly not all of them Japanese. I just cant stand the attitudes of people who like ALL things Japanese only for the reason that they are Japanese and dislike ALL things not-Japanese simply because they are not Japanese. I know a few people like this and I find them annoying. It seems stupid to me to disqualify for example a good American band without listening to it because it is western. Things should be given merit on quality not origin. That is as bad as a 'brand-name' mentality. Bah! Ok that is my rant done with. Sorry if I offended any Japan-crazy super-enthusiasts with that.

Edit: Anyway as for otaku-relation, since a person who it utterly obsessed with everything Japanese isnt focused on only a single thing to the detriment of other aspects of life, such as being social, I dont think they can be classified as otaku. Since of course I should imagine loving all things Japanese must include people and society, right? I dont think someone with broad interests and a social life would ever be called an otaku. Now if you had visited a famous/popular onsen in every major city in japan, knew many onsen facts, knew onsen history and talked about onsen all the time and how great it was (though I have never been), that would make you an otaku. Pretty lame example though. I wonder if onsen-otaku actually exist? :unsure:

Again, sorry about the lame post. Last minute post before going to bed. Probably should avoid these...
Last edited by Aulcard on Sep 14th, '06, 14:11, edited 2 times in total.

furransu
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Post by furransu » Sep 14th, '06, 14:08

hmm i see this thread and im wondering if someone living in Japan can help me..

im going to Japan this December and planning to go to Ayumi Hamasaki's Countdown live concert.. im looking for someone who can help me buy the ticket -_- if anyone can help me please let me know! thanks :) But the concert info is not available yet though -_-

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Oguri_Shun_fan
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Post by Oguri_Shun_fan » Sep 14th, '06, 14:45

I would say there is racism everywhere. I stayed in Japan for 3 weeks (granted that is a long time) but i found most people were really nice, the high schoolers would test out their english, some even invited me (and my friends that went with me) to join then at Mc Donalds. the even agrees to take a picture with us ^_^. I guess it depends on where you go and how you act towards people as to how they will act towards you. That was my personal experiance but it's different for everyone
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nikochanr3
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Post by nikochanr3 » Sep 14th, '06, 14:56

Some of it is not intentional, but i remember i have a classmate who was black and played music. he got mad positve attention, but some of it irked him because there was a vibe of "you are musical because you are black" and an overly nice vibe, like WOW YOU ARE SO SPECIAL. he didnt want to be special, if you catch my drift....he wanted to be one of many. it wasnt meant to be negative, but it was in a way at times.
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auroragb
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Post by auroragb » Sep 14th, '06, 15:49

Aulcard wrote:What exactly is a 'Japanohphile' ? I have heard the term but dont know specifically what it means.
Just look up Anglophileand replace England with Japan, the term I learned when growing up was Nipponophile, but seems that Japanophile is more popular term to use
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siangsaolong
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Post by siangsaolong » Sep 14th, '06, 15:59

I went to hokkaido last month
people there are very friendly
and I went to high school
as you know they can't speak english so they don't talk to me though I can speak japanese at communicateable level(And English is not my mother language)
and comparing to when I met my senpai's friend who study at todai and can speak English
It's totally different
So I think may be the same problem as in Thailand
People who can't speak English just avoid foreigner
I never face racism here because I look like Japanese
and even I talk to my friends in our language I still not face any racism
and one time I talk to my friend in Thai and there is a Japanese who studied Thai in the train
when she heard our voice she came to talk to us in our language
so I think it sometimes is the communication problem that make it looks like racism
OH there is a good point in being foreigner
If someone bother you just say that you are a foreigner(boku wa gaikokujin desu) or speak something in your own language then they won't bother you any more

kotaeshiranaihito
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Post by kotaeshiranaihito » Sep 14th, '06, 16:36

the_spin0ff wrote:what about Japanophiles? are they more accepted then an otaku?
Well japanophiles aren't japanese, and pretty much, a lot of things foreigners do are excusable (because they're foreigner, they don't know any better). Foreign otaku for example are accepted A LOT more than japanese otaku (they might even have a chance to get dates with girls who would NEVER go for japanese otaku), so japanophiles are probably the same issue. Japanophile is mostly used among non-japanese as a slur against those who like japanese things.

From my experience, most japanophiles are anime otaku who convinced themselves that Japan is the best place ever and can't seem to acknowledge the fact that Japan is nothing more or less than a country. It has it's ups and downs. It's usually those people that get called that.

But I'm pretty sure many people (not just japanese) would get annoyed quickly if someone kept obsessing around them about their country/culture, no matter what the reason you have for it.

BesidURshadow
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Post by BesidURshadow » Sep 21st, '06, 04:03

Sounds lik ther a bad and good side of japan...
but who would give a F... anyways if u go there for holiday and to have fun why even thik about the negative juz go and have your fun....
i live in australia and in my town there are like 15 000 or 25 000 asian mix wif VIET, CHINESE,THAI,CAM and so on...
but i fink in every country there is a bad and side of it
eg.. black person walking around the shopping centre wif all asian around him and they look wat will he fink? these people are not friendly as in the are racise? and this is true....
people will look at u but wat can they do?

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