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31

The media depicts being a virgin as embarrassing because it reflects how teenagers feel about being a virgin. As for why authors choose to reflect this particular part of society, that would be a bigger discussion. The short answer is to evoke empathy from their audience. This is not exclusively a Japanese thing. A study cited in Psychology Today found: ...


29

This is less to do with eye health as it does with photosensitive epilepsy (PSE): Television has traditionally been the most common source of seizures in PSE. For patients with PSE, it is especially hazardous to view television in a dark room, at close range, or when the television is out of adjustment and is showing a rapidly flickering image (as when the ...


26

Currently, nearly 50% of Japanese adults are not sexually active. This has been reported in international news such as the Washington Post, the Telegraph, the Guardian, the Daily Mail, and Japan's own English-language news source, the Japan Times. Anime characters are a reflection of the real situation. Not all of the adults who are not currently sexually ...


24

Let's look at the meaning of the words separately. A quick google search tells us that a gap is a space or interval; a break in continuity. It can also mean to be a difference. Here is a post that addresses what moe is. If I were to describe it myself, it is the feeling you get when you see someone/something so cute you just want to hug them and take them ...


23

Yes, this does mirror how Japan marks the test papers of students. Let's see an example each of a marked test paper in anime and in real life Japan: Circles and crosses indicate right and wrong answers, but you'll often see check marks used in place of crosses to save time and effort. Check marks are sometimes called reten for bearing resemblance to the ...


22

Because some people like women with big breasts. As usual, anime exaggerates; it can't just have a woman with big breasts, it has to have a woman with ridiculously gigantic breasts. This isn't purely a Japanese thing. Actually, I would argue that it came in origin from American media that were exported to Japan. In the US, large breasts are often considered ...


20

Note: Some references have been excluded here for PG reasons. There's a few layers to this question. Firstly, this isn't a hentai-specific thing. Lots of Japanese non-animated porn contains rape. This is a cultural thing spanning more than just anime. The main reason as some people have pointed out to you is that it sells. But let's go a little further ...


20

The Nazis did a great job at stigmatizing swastikas but the symbol has been used for other purposes before and still is. You can verify that this isn't particular to the anime by looking at the respective area on Google Maps for example. Or any other major Japanese city for that matter. Due to it's use in Hinduism, you will likely find it associated with ...


19

The hand seals in Naruto are based in Mudra, which are symbolic/ritual gestures associated to Hinduism and Buddhism. Mudra are used in everyday life, from religious practices to dances, going through martial arts as well. The most well-known Mudra is probably Añjali Mudrā, which often accompanies the greeting Namaste. In the French version of the Mudra ...


19

Cherry blossoms are very prominent in Japanese culture. From Wikipedia: In Japan, cherry blossoms also symbolize clouds due to their nature of blooming en masse, besides being an enduring metaphor for the ephemeral nature of life, an aspect of Japanese cultural tradition that is often associated with Buddhistic influence, and which is embodied in the ...


19

The name of this meme is Obi spin, from the Japanese term 帯回し obi-mawashi. An old jidaigeki-related meme wherein someone (usually a middle-aged man) pulls on the obi of a young woman wearing a kimono, causing her to spin around as it unravels. Usually accompanied by the tugger saying "It's fine, isn't it? (よいではないか、よいではないか)" in a sexually ...


16

Actually it's not only Kyoto. Depending on the manga's theme, the field trip could be anywhere, but yes, most of the time it'd be Okinawa, Hokkaido, Kyoto and Osaka. As a side note, most of the manga I read has the school trip to Okinawa and Hokkaido instead of Kyoto like yours. Okinawa is usually visited during winter because due to its geographical ...


16

There is no reason to think so. When Kirito introduced Shino to Asuna and Liz at the Dicey Cafe, the three of them were preparing to bring Shino back to her hometown, where she encountered the gunman she shot and killed as a young child, so that she could accept the consequences of her actions and overcome her guilt of having killed a man. One typically ...


16

This is very dependant per mangaka. And all tough there is a thriving independent market for manga, it is rarely a solo effort. Hence most of the mangaka start off as either an assistant, or manage to get a contract at a well known publisher. Now, as for how much they earn, lets take Eiichiro Oda as an example. He has been estimated to earn around 2 billion ...


16

Here are some data points, none of which I can verify the veracity of. According to a user on chiebukuro, some class at his school ran a crossdressing cafe, and some of the boys who would look decent in a maid uniform were put in a maid uniform. In this chiebukuro question, one user reports that they will be running a maid cafe at their school festival, ...


15

Hanami (lit. "flower viewing") being one of the nation-wide festivals would help. Note that the school year starts in April (graduation in late March), while depending on the location, cherry blossoms are prevalent from the end of March to early May. Everyone knows romance is all about love at first sight on the first day of school and confessions during ...


15

These type of otaku-owned car are called Itasha 痛車?, literally "painful car" (painfully embarrassing / painful for the wallet) and started with decoration of cars in the 80s when Japan experienced a lot of growth and many wealthy people started importing many luxury cars. This decoration only really consisted of plushies, stickers and non-permanent ...


15

Akira Toriyama was definitely influenced by Journey to the West in writing the original Dragon Ball manga. In early stories, Goku rides the Flying Nimbus cloud and wields an extendable staff, two aspects taken directly from his inspiration the Monkey King along with his name, and the fact that he turns into a giant ape is also a callback to his simian ...


14

In my country (Indonesia), our school uniform has a badge that indicates what grade we are. It was not just my school, other schools here also have it like this. Thus, this is not/no longer (since Indonesia used to be under the occupation of the Japanese forces) a Japanese specific culture. As to why we have it that way, a page in Wikipedia explained it ...


13

Japanese speakers may remember numbers by taking the prominent syllable from how they read numbers (語呂合わせ goroawase). There are more than one way on how to count: one that descended from Old Japanese (大和言葉 Yamato kotoba) and one borrowed from Chinese (漢語 kango). In the order of Yamato / Kango: ひとつ hitotsu / いち ichi ふたつ futatsu / に ni みっつ mittsu / さん san よっつ ...


13

I exclude the laziness hypothesis. This is a deliberate omission of a relevant information by the narrator. This is the case of an unreliable narrator that was keeping herself a key fact for narration purposes. These lines about to Agatha Christie's novels from the cited Wikipedia article can apply to this type of trope too: the narrator hides essential ...


13

The golden age of anime began in the 1980s with Mobile Suit Gundam and Space Battleship Yamato. According to Wikipedia: Mobile Suit Gundam (1979), the first Real Robot anime, was also initially unsuccessful but was revived as a theatrical film in 1982. The success of the theatrical versions of Yamato and Gundam are seen as the beginning of the anime boom of ...


13

You are correct: Comiket is the world's largest convention for selling/buying doujinshi, and includes cosplayers. However, it is not an anime/manga convention and as an experience is pretty much nothing like Comic Con or similar conventions to Comic Con such as Anime Expo. Yes, Comiket only exists in Japan, as over 550,000 Japanese doujinshika (a.k.a. ...


13

Some Notes Before Reading This is an imaginary course that I have created. I think it gives a broad enough overview of the subject for a single term, but I think it could be extended easily to a two term course if a more in-depth knowledge was required. I'm assuming 1 hour lectures twice a week, enough time in seminars to do full screenings, and a ...


13

Japan's post offices are banks. And the Japanese postal banking system is nothing to sneeze at. In fact, in 2008, Japan Post Bank held more deposits than any other bank in the whole world! It is hence unsurprising that shows set in Japan, like Index and Sword Art Online, might feature robberies on post offices. There's a lot of money to be had there!


13

NSFW (Nudity) content and manga spoilers ahead. Those are White Birch Branches. It's also mentioned in the manga during Chapter 20. I'm not sure of their exact use but according to the Wikipedia page of birches, fragrant twigs of silver birch are used in saunas to relax the muscles. This seems to coincide with what is shown in the manga/anime, as it ...


12

Oded's answer is correct. The most important reason to remain far away from the screen is to avoid the risk of epileptic seizures. As a practice in anime, this was started after the infamous Pokemon episode Electric Soldier Porygon aired, which resulted in 685 viewers being hospitalized for seizures. The Pokemon anime was put on hiatus for 4 months after the ...


12

Question #1: Why do many characters tend to have crazy hair colors? What is the cultural origin of such a style? The origin of this practice is the primarily black and white medium of manga. Manga pages are printed in black and white, so almost all of the art that mangaka (manga artists) draw is black and white (this is much cheaper for the publishers than ...


12

The FCC, the government body responsible for broadcasting media, does not have any specific laws against animation that comes from Japan, otherwise known as anime. Because the 1st amendment protects the Freedom of Expression, the censorship laws that are in place and enforced by the FCC in the U.S are concerned with obscenity, indecency, and profanity. The ...


11

Going one step over, here's the reason of the censorship, according to this article: According to Bennett, one of the actions taken by Allied forces after World War II was to ban pornography in Japan. As Japan was a very sexual culture prior to the war, occupying forces blamed porn for the aggressive and expansionary tendencies of the Japanese ...


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