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Female Identity In Japan Essay

1773 words - 7 pages

Is western influence in both the media and society affecting the authenticity of traditional gender roles and female identity within contemporary Japanese Culture? The face of unfamiliar and irrelevant representations is it difficult to assert as sense of identity. Although this is a concern of female assertion of identity and position in many different cultures, including western cultures like the United States. The essential issue that is wished to be resolved within these findings is whether cultural imperialism is the disabling factor of the female identity within Japanese society. Cultural Imperialism is referred to as the development and maintenance of a relationship between two or more countries or societies based on the idea of integrating and imposing a new set of cultural ideals or attitudes from the perspective of a superior culture. This can be in the form of legal policy, military action or cultural ideologies. In relation to this case study, we will investigate the western influence presence in contemporary Japanese society and its effect on the Japanese female to assert cultural identity and feminine ideologies.
Darling-Wolf (2003) report on the media and western influence on Japanese woman conceptions of attractiveness examines the ideologies about gender identity held by Japanese woman from various backgrounds in relation to western representations of female attractiveness within Japanese Media and Pop Culture. Darling-Wolf argues that this expose has both benefited and suffered Japanese woman, detailing that compared to their male counterparts "exposure to Western civilization that initially sparked concern with women’s rights in Japan in the mid-nineteenth century" among the female society. Although a movement in gender equality and feminine assertion would be seen as a positive move in many Western societies. The adoption of western ideals to challenge the traditional gender ideologies of the Japanese woman is seen by the Japanese media as another Western trend that’s holds no place in Japanese society. This article concludes to question the effect of the constant western representation of woman in the media on the identity and ideals of the Japanese woman. Darling-Wolf (2003) explains that "In spite of their frequent rebellion against such representations and longing for more racially appropriate models, they did not challenge the validity of the cultural standards media texts help construct and disseminate". In all, a potential harm is illustrated in the constant admirations for physical attributes of a culture that is not their own it is believed that these representations are no more than an aspect of a much larger western cultural influence within Japanese society.
Gender ideology is influenced in many cultural by traditional and contemporary belief systems of what is expected of each sex. Many expectations are almost always based on the traditional gender roles within families, which as explained by Loyd (2004) which...

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