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Old 2011-01-23, 23:54   Link #1
Guernsey
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Values Dissonance and Anime

While fans both the East and West enjoy the medium, there are some things cultural or otherwise that tend to get lost by most people. Just the West has some cultural differences that more get lost in the East, the East have a lot things only those who live Japan may understand. Whether it would be the concept of Nekketsu, the Pillars of Moral character, Bushido as well as any of the humor present in shows like Bobobo that end to make perfect sense to Japanese fans but are lost to Westerners. What do you think of the difference in values? Even fansubbing can only help so much in understanding anime.
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Old 2011-01-24, 18:46   Link #2
Simon
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There are some things I see in anime or Asian film that just make no sense to me - as a rule not major plot points, but little things like why did person X respond to person Y's action in that particular way. Times like that good explanatory material can help, be it TL notes, external commentary, or discussion with more knowledgeable people in a forum like AnimeSuki - even if the answer is "this is a very deep concept, here are some good books to get you started."

There's the whole vexed question there of what purpose a translation serves: should it teach the viewer the cultural nuances, or should it convert them into a form the viewer can understand? Both approaches have their value, although personally I prefer the former because the opportunity to learn about another culture is a big part of why anime appeals to me.

Where things get tricky is when it's not obvious that you're missing something: the whole "we don't know what we don't know" problem. Unless you've actually been immersed in Japanese culture and seen first-hand just how subtly different it can be, I think there's a danger of assuming you understand it better than you do. Arguably it's no big deal if you enjoy the anime despite "missing the point", but again reading commentary from more clued-up people really helps put things in perspective.

So I don't think cultural differences are an insurmountable barrier, as long as we recognise their existence and approach them with appropriate humility and willingness to learn.
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Old 2011-01-24, 18:53   Link #3
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honestly, if u dont undestand - then u dont. if u do- u do. not much to be done here. or discussed...
simon
when u convert, u lose intended meaning. anime stops being anime at that point. it starts being a half-american cartoon.
but when u don't know u're missing smth, maybe its better. if u know then u start to worry and stuff...
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Old 2011-01-24, 19:57   Link #4
Madman6510
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Values dissonance can't really be avoided when you're translating something across cultures, and still want to keep the translation accurate.

It's not a big deal, as long as it's properly explained. This is why translation notes are so valuable. Besides, TL notes are interesting. I'd rather have things explained to me, rather than having it converted to something that meshes with my culture for me.
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Old 2011-01-24, 21:01   Link #5
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*ideally* ... if you see something in foreign film that confuses you, it should motivate you to study up on what's going on and learn about the culture. However.... I watch a large margin of folks just say 'lolwut' and move on to the next thing.

The East is not "inscrutable" or opaque, it just requires some study of the value systems, finding out what is important to the society, what is attractive, what is considered proper behavior, etc. The entire world "ain't like it is in your 'hood".
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Old 2011-01-24, 21:09   Link #6
RandySyler
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Absolutely to what Vexx wrote. Study Bushido or other aspects of Japanese, or just eastern culture in general. Some fansub groups also post notes in the show itself or on their website. So be proactive, and learn.

Also, as you watch more anime, customs and traditions start to become more apparent.
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Old 2011-01-24, 21:33   Link #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RandySyler View Post
Absolutely to what Vexx wrote. Study Bushido or other aspects of Japanese, or just eastern culture in general. Some fansub groups also post notes in the show itself or on their website. So be proactive, and learn.

Also, as you watch more anime, customs and traditions start to become more apparent.
yeah, bushido FTW! its writen a loooong time ago, and even the jap's changed their values in that period of time. so its really not the best literature you would want to consider if wanting to know modern japanese ppl. i'd probably suggest Murakami, the both of them.
but i agree that the more anime u watch, the more knowlege u gain about japan, although probably somewhat less closer to the truth.
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a) I知 batshit insane or mentally challenged. Nyan!
b) Wasu~p?! *brofist*
c) Your mind is too narrow to embrace my genius, de geso.
d) I was accidentally dropped into a barrel of whiskey, so now I am constantly drunk.
e) Go home and die! Dattebayo!
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Old 2011-01-24, 22:49   Link #8
Simon
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Originally Posted by idiffer View Post
but i agree that the more anime u watch, the more knowlege u gain about japan, although probably somewhat less closer to the truth.
Wait, are you saying that real Japanese girls don't have blue hair, breasts the size of basketballs, and the ability to send a guy into low-earth orbit with a single punch?

Seriously though, maybe I should have said that anime is good for being exposed to Japanese culture, rather than for learning about it. It's no substitute for spending some quality time at the library.
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Old 2011-01-24, 23:12   Link #9
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libraries are boring. remember, you're on an anime forum for gods sake...we like easy lazy stuff...not research in a library...god...
but the basketballs got me thinking...yeah...
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My posts seem retarted? I invoke the freedomof choice upon thee to choose one of the below.
a) I知 batshit insane or mentally challenged. Nyan!
b) Wasu~p?! *brofist*
c) Your mind is too narrow to embrace my genius, de geso.
d) I was accidentally dropped into a barrel of whiskey, so now I am constantly drunk.
e) Go home and die! Dattebayo!
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Old 2011-01-25, 02:51   Link #10
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Originally Posted by Simon View Post
Wait, are you saying that real Japanese girls don't have blue hair, breasts the size of basketballs, and the ability to send a guy into low-earth orbit with a single punch?
We can only dream...
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Old 2011-01-25, 04:38   Link #11
Sheba
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Quote:
Originally Posted by idiffer View Post
libraries are boring. remember, you're on an anime forum for gods sake...we like easy lazy stuff...not research in a library...god...
but the basketballs got me thinking...yeah...
It's that kind of post that makes me miss the times before internet.
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Old 2011-01-25, 04:59   Link #12
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Just read from more than one source, and you should be ok.
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Old 2011-01-25, 07:45   Link #13
Salt
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Madman6510 View Post
Values dissonance can't really be avoided when you're translating something across cultures, and still want to keep the translation accurate.

It's not a big deal, as long as it's properly explained. This is why translation notes are so valuable. Besides, TL notes are interesting. I'd rather have things explained to me, rather than having it converted to something that meshes with my culture for me.
This.

Reading "translation notes" explaining the culture is half the fun.
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Old 2011-01-25, 10:08   Link #14
idiffer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sheba View Post
It's that kind of post that makes me miss the times before internet.
ooh, a fellow basketball fan? round...so round. internet? nahh. real deal feel sealed keels and u kneel. i love poetry.
also good to know that ppl 30+ are still enjoying anime. it makes me feel safe for my own future.
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My posts seem retarted? I invoke the freedomof choice upon thee to choose one of the below.
a) I知 batshit insane or mentally challenged. Nyan!
b) Wasu~p?! *brofist*
c) Your mind is too narrow to embrace my genius, de geso.
d) I was accidentally dropped into a barrel of whiskey, so now I am constantly drunk.
e) Go home and die! Dattebayo!
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Old 2011-01-27, 15:38   Link #15
Simon
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Originally Posted by idiffer View Post
but the basketballs got me thinking...yeah...
Note to self: don't joke about stuff like that.

Spoiler for Hourou Musuko ep3:
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Old 2011-01-29, 14:07   Link #16
idiffer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Simon View Post
Note to self: don't joke about stuff like that.

Spoiler for Hourou Musuko ep3:
YES!!! good one))
+1 to your rep.
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My posts seem retarted? I invoke the freedomof choice upon thee to choose one of the below.
a) I知 batshit insane or mentally challenged. Nyan!
b) Wasu~p?! *brofist*
c) Your mind is too narrow to embrace my genius, de geso.
d) I was accidentally dropped into a barrel of whiskey, so now I am constantly drunk.
e) Go home and die! Dattebayo!
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Old 2011-01-29, 16:29   Link #17
fukarming
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Is there any specific examples?

Anime girls have unrealistic hair colors is because it is easy to distinguish from one and others. If they all have the same hair color as in real life, they would need alot more details in the facial structure, which translate into production cost.

Also I read somewhere (a scholar article, one that you can find in a library) that Japanese is fascinated about foreigners, and that's why characters love to have blond hair (that article is written in the late 90s and is talking about the impact of SailorMoon)

Big Breast - Well I don't think it is just a Japanese thing. Isn't plenty of men love big breast? That is why we have breast transplant.

As of culture, I don't think these can be explained, as it is just the value of east and west are different. Use Sepukku as an example, I can explain to you that the east believes it is better to die than to live in shame. But I cannot tell you why they think like that. I can only tell you that Christian culture hate suiciding and in contrast other cultures are less oppose to the idea of suicide.

Just like why the eastern culture love saving and live a life with no fun and the western culture like to live life to the fullest and not safe any money....etc It is how different culture rate the importance of things in their life differently and I doubt that can be explained.
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Old 2013-04-02, 14:33   Link #18
Guernsey
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Japanese Tropes and Values Dissonance

Bump.
I didn't want to start a new thread so I am bumping this one.

Take a look these

Japanese Spirit

While it may not be wise to think in tropes, what do you think about the tropes being used in most anime?
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