Weekly Round-Up, 3-9 March 2021: Burakumin Issues, Yuri Exhibit Online, and Outsourced Crunch

By: Anime Feminist March 9, 20210 Comments
two men facing off with two versions of the penguin: one that gets rid of salt through tears, one through snot

AniFem Round-Up

Reading Code:Realize as Queer Allegory

Naomi “Bez” Norbez shares how the otome game resonated with his journey of coming out and finding a queer family.

Dressed to Kill la Kill: The overlooked power of fashion’s rebellious history

Vrai highlights how clothes have been tools of rebellion for marginalized genders, and how KLK missed weaving in gendered power imbalances of the real fashion world.

Who’s your favorite female manga artist?

As yesterday was International Women’s Day, it felt a fitting thing to celebrate.

Beyond AniFem

Ainu, Okinawa and Indigeneity Series (University of British Columbia)

Lecture/panel series (recorded, with timed availability) focusing on struggles facing the Ainu people in modern Japan.

Building on from the important and hugely successful Hokkaidō 150: Settler Colonialism and Indigeneity in Modern Japan and Beyond organized in March 2019, this series examines histories of colonialism and its impacts on Indigenous peoples. Shortly over a month after our Hokkaidō 150 event, the Japanese Diet on April 19, 2019 approved a bill to officially recognize the Ainu as Indigenous to Japan and to promote and protect Ainu culture. But, has anything changed since then? Uchinānchu/Okinawan people continue to face different types of challenges and struggles as they are not officially recognized as “Indigenous” or even as “a minority group.” While Ainu and Uchinānchu people are distinct groups, and “Indigeneity” is an identity embraced by some and not others, we are keen to continue exploring issues facing these people as we renew our mutual commitment to justice, truth, and reconciliation.

Lesbian Art & Manga Exhibition Yuriten Held Online This Month (Yuri Mother)

The annual exhibition will include works by a host of popular yuri creators.

Veiwers worldwide and visit the Yuriten website and enjoy the features creators and works, as well as purchasing official merchandise and Yuriten exclusive goods like the 2020 calendar and clear file featuring the events main visuals: an illustration by Nakatani Nio (Bloom Into You) and a photograph by Minori Takhashi. Preorders for merchandise are accepted during the fair, all March long. Although the goods are only shipped in Japan, international patrons can utilize delivery forwarding services.

The Dark History of the Reincarnated Villainess Vol. 1 (Anime News Network, Caitlin Moore)

Review of the latest manga in the villainess subgenre, about a woman sucked into her own adolescent fiction.

The best part of the series, though, isn’t the art, or the characters, or even the story; it’s the metanarrative. There’s a deep awareness, even affection, for just what draws young women to these sorts of narratives. They’re not just silly escapist fantasies or vanity projects, but a way for their creators, and their audience, to process the world around them. They are modern-day fables; fairy tales that reassure those listening that things may be hard and scary, but they will survive and come out the other side stronger and more grown-up.

Just as over two decades ago, Fushigi Yûgi and Escaflowne tapped into young women’s anxieties, Konoha’s “Dark History” was informed by what she was going through at the time. At times, the action will cut away to what was happening in her life when she wrote the part she’s now living in. A refusal to go to the dance because no one will dance with her turns into an elegant ball where every man wants to dance with her; her adolescent simultaneous fear and interest in sex drive her to ritualize acts of intimacy and create a beast that exists to kidnap and assault women. All of this is depicted with affectionate ribbing at most, and never cruel or mocking.

Women speak out about sexual violence after Great East Japan Earthquake (SoraNews24)

A recent NHK documentary discusses waves of sexual violence following disasters in 1995 and 2011 (contains graphic descriptions in testimonies).

The 45-minute documentary featured interviews with supporters who have been working hard to eradicate sexual violence in Japan, not only after the 2011 earthquake but following the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake that devastated the Kobe area in 1995.

Sexual violence in the wake of disasters has been widely documented around the world, but here in Japan, the issue has been largely overlooked, with Japan’s first full-scale survey into the issue only conducted after the Great East Japan Earthquake.

The survey outlined 82 individual incidents of sexual assault, sexual harassment, and unwanted sexual contact. Many of the victims were single, separated, divorced or widowed women, with a number of cases involving quid pro quo types of assault, where individuals were exploited for sex in return for resources like food and shelter.

VIDEO: On the issue of outsourced crunch labor, focusing specifically on studios in Indonesia and Malaysia.

TWEET: Link to rebuttal of the issues surrounding a Harvard paper on the Burakumin that claimed the marginalized racial group was organized to make money. The article was written by the same professor who claimed all Korean comfort women were consenting contract workers (this is untrue).  

TWEET: Upcoming Q&A panel about intersections of fandom and race.

THREAD: Response to a comfort women apologist article, regarding misattributed survivor accounts.

THREAD: Appreciation thread on Takahashi Rumiko’s importance specifically as a shounen artist.

THREAD: Brief intro to recently license-rescued yuri series Kashimashi: Girl Meets Girl.

AniFem Community

We hope everyone is able to find a cool new artist they hadn’t looked into before.

Kyoko Ariyoshi. I'm so glad Anifem did a piece on her. Ariyoshi's use of negative space, floral dream-like atmosphere, and intricate detail in her body and hand gestures are incredible - perfect for a ballet manga.
I really like Adachitoka, the creators of Noragami. Adachitoka is a pair of women, one is the background artist and the other draws characters. What's really interesting about these two is that they are very private individuals. Besides their last names and hometowns, not much else is known about them. As far as I know, Adachitoka has done exactly one interview, in the style of a manga, which talked about their struggles early on in their careers.  Noragami is one of the few manga I've managed to stick with for the past few years. Adachitoka loves to drop visual foreshadowing - throwaway background elements from the first few chapters have been revealed to be deliberate choices with future ramifications. Absolutely stunning full page panels! I always get giddy when those show up.

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