Perspectives on Race and Culture in Japanese Society: The Mass Media and Ethnicity

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This book provides the only work in English presently available that covers the main, up-to-date directions and findings on Japan's history, exploring Japanese nationalism and its expression not only in serious anthropological studies but in the popular media. Merging various related disciplines in a single work, it examines the latest archaeological excavations and recent Japanese interpretations, biology, genetics, and paleoanthropology in terms of their contribution to an understanding of racial origins. It examines the difference between Japanese and Western perspectives on human evolution and racial origins, as well as distortion in the Japanese TV media regarding news and documentary broadcasts.


"The author has made an exhaustive survey of TV programs and media publications from the late 1980s to the early 1990s. Prime-time, front-page stories of exclusive archeological, anthropological and genetic discoveries are covered to map repetitive, factual distortions within a highly structured and social scientific analytical framework in order to underline the symbiotic relationship between culture and race in Japanese society. . . . the book touches on wide-ranging materials and theses." - Frank Langdon

"The inclusion of an analysis of the media as a source for the transmittal of racial identity is crucial to advancing our scholarly understanding of how the Japanese view themselves, for as Oblas points out: 'The percentage of TV's daily viewing audience in Japan is 94% . . . .' His analysis of issues concerning media presentation. . . provides us with an insight into some of the current debates in Japanese anthropological circles, as between Namio Egami and Makoto Sahara. . . . This book can be recommended to both students and faculty interested in learning more about the Japanese mass media's treatment of the study of Japanese anthropological roots, the 'who we are and how we differ from other people racially'. " - Glen D. Hook

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