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Japanese white-washing of Naomi Osaka - Racism or Color preference

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https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2019/01/31/naomi-osaka-has-become-face-japan-will-she-change-views-race/?noredirect=on&utm_term=.2f16c42ab1f3

 

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Osaka is not the first brown woman who has risen to prominence in a country that unabashedly worships “bihaku” (skin whitening). In 2015, Ariana Miyamoto, the daughter of a Japanese woman and a black American man, was crowned Miss Universe Japan. The following year, Priyanka Yoshikawa, another brown-skinned woman of Japanese and Indian descent, was crowned Miss World Japan. Both women faced unreasonable criticism on social media for not appearing “Japanese enough." Courageously, they both used their platforms to speak out about their identities and concerns. With their wins, even those of us with biracial, multicultural families and friends living in Japan began to feel more optimistic that our voices were finally being heard.

I can relate very much to Indians preferring fairer skin. Is it because they feel inferior to fair skin people? I have experienced how family members pass jokes on skin color of Africans. " One of them was about having to watch Britain v/s Nigeria football match on a black-and-white TV. If  we dim it the brightness, we couldn't see Nigerian players and if we increased brightness, we couldn't see English players" 

 

I cringe at such jokes on color, probably but this is seen as racist by the West (WaPo liberals) mainly because of the racism which was prevalent for more than 1500 years. It has a checkered past with the slavery and civil rights movements and even Apartheid. But is it racism in Japan or Asia in general? 

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35 minutes ago, coffee_rules said:

is it racism in Japan or Asia in general

Yes.  Japan and East Asia is massively prejudiced and racist.  Even more so than Indians in some ways.  Tbh there's a lot of implicit color bias all over the planet, even among people who are actually good and don't want to be prejudiced.  Its unconscious.  

 

 

 

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The Japanese don't generally consider any non-Japanese as Japanese. They have a clear demarcation of who is one of them and who is an outsider. One can be a immigrant from say India, and live there their whole life and still never be Japanese: either as a citizen or as one of their culture. The Chinese are similar. Both nations understand themselves as inheritors of civilizations which are many centuries old and don't define themselves based on "alternative facts" types of ideas promulgated in Europe on what nations are and which people are members of a nation.  

 

One can rummage through news articles about the Ms. Japan winner and see what the Japanese opinion is. They view her winning the Ms. Japan contest as part of a social engineering project rather than these ladies being hated or being thought of as ugly. They wanted people who actually look Japanese to win these contests, not people winning contests solely because they are ethnically mixed.  By no standard of beauty to the common Japanese, would someone non-pure Japanese have won that contest.  

 

It certainly isn't a "race" issue, unless one considers Japanese as a separate race, as Japanese equally wouldn't like Chinese or Koreans either who look relatively more similar to them and also tend to fall on similar sides of human skin color spectrum.

 

Fair skin is commonly a sign of beauty. Fair skin =/= white skin either. Chinese, who are often fairer skinned, often describe beautiful women as having fair, porcelain skin. The English are "white" and even their stories have mentions of knights saving "fair maidens", implying that there were non-fair maidens there as well. Nothing about either suggests anything "racial" as what are defined in current times as different races, did not exist in those countries then. In many cases, fairness is just a signal of status: people from farming families, men and women, tend to work the fields and, by virtue of sun exposure, get tanner skin. People from wealthy families would tend to spend their time inside, untouched by the sun and have fairer skin. Skin color itself is significantly a function of geographic location ie the sun exposure gradient.  

 

Neither is it racial in India, as there is no evidence of Indians being of different racial groups, particularly varna wise, or that white skin is more common in one varna over the other, which is usually implied by certain useless people.   Ram and Krishna are generally written as dark-skinned. IIRC, in Valmiki Ramayana,while Sita is compared to the moon, Ram is compared to the pitch black sky in one instance when they are walking side-by-side in a palace garden in Ayodhya. 

 

That some western "liberal" from WaPo wants to read Japan through her Western-jaundiced view and write that virtue-signaling piece displays her "white savior complex." Gorimemsahib looks to have taken it on as her personal pet-project to teach the ignorant Japanese about racial tolerance. Too bad for her, they won't give a care...  

 

Edited by Tibarn

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A cousin of mine has been staying in Japan for the last 8 odd years and speaks Japanese with a fair degree of fluency. Her experiences are quite contrary to what common perception suggests.

When the Japanese see her and imagine her to be a tourist/business traveler who can't speak the language; they go out of their way to help her. Even if she may not need assistance of any sort.

When she speaks Japanese they tend to be a lot more reserved/cold. Even for stuff as simple as asking for directions.

Wouldn't call it racism, but the people have very rigid views of who exactly is a Japanese and who isn't. Prima facie, not an inclusive society, in spite of being courteous people with an amazing civic sense.

 

In any other country, knowledge of the local language would draw you closer to the locals.

 

 

Edited by Mariyam

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On 2/4/2019 at 9:46 AM, Tibarn said:
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The Japanese don't generally consider any non-Japanese as Japanese. They have a clear demarcation of who is one of them and who is an outsider. One can be a immigrant from say India, and live there their whole life and still never be Japanese: either as a citizen or as one of their culture. The Chinese are similar. Both nations understand themselves as inheritors of civilizations which are many centuries old and don't define themselves based on "alternative facts" types of ideas promulgated in Europe on what nations are and which people are members of a nation.  

 

One can rummage through news articles about the Ms. Japan winner and see what the Japanese opinion is. They view her winning the Ms. Japan contest as part of a social engineering project rather than these ladies being hated or being thought of as ugly. They wanted people who actually look Japanese to win these contests, not people winning contests solely because they are ethnically mixed.  By no standard of beauty to the common Japanese, would someone non-pure Japanese have won that contest.  

 

It certainly isn't a "race" issue, unless one considers Japanese as a separate race, as Japanese equally wouldn't like Chinese or Koreans either who look relatively more similar to them and also tend to fall on similar sides of human skin color spectrum.

 

Fair skin is commonly a sign of beauty. Fair skin =/= white skin either. Chinese, who are often fairer skinned, often describe beautiful women as having fair, porcelain skin. The English are "white" and even their stories have mentions of knights saving "fair maidens", implying that there were non-fair maidens there as well. Nothing about either suggests anything "racial" as what are defined in current times as different races, did not exist in those countries then. In many cases, fairness is just a signal of status: people from farming families, men and women, tend to work the fields and, by virtue of sun exposure, get tanner skin. People from wealthy families would tend to spend their time inside, untouched by the sun and have fairer skin. Skin color itself is significantly a function of geographic location ie the sun exposure gradient.  

 

Neither is it racial in India, as there is no evidence of Indians being of different racial groups, particularly varna wise, or that white skin is more common in one varna over the other, which is usually implied by certain useless people.   Ram and Krishna are generally written as dark-skinned. IIRC, in Valmiki Ramayana,while Sita is compared to the moon, Ram is compared to the pitch black sky in one instance when they are walking side-by-side in a palace garden in Ayodhya. 

 

That some western "liberal" from WaPo wants to read Japan through her Western-jaundiced view and write that virtue-signaling piece displays her "white savior complex." Gorimemsahib looks to have taken it on as her personal pet-project to teach the ignorant Japanese about racial tolerance. Too bad for her, they won't give a care...  

 

Social engineering is a worse form of violence compared to physical violence. 

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22 minutes ago, Mariyam said:

A cousin of mine has been staying in Japan for the last 8 odd years and speaks Japanese with a fair degree of fluency. Her experiences are quite contrary to what common perception suggests.

When the Japanese see her and imagine her to be a tourist/business traveler who can't speak the language; they go out of their way to help her. Even if she may not need assistance of any sort.

When she speaks Japanese they tend to be a lot more reserved/cold. Even for stuff as simple as asking for directions.

Wouldn't call it racism, but the people have very rigid views of who exactly is a Japanese and who isn't. Prima facie, not an inclusive society, in spite of being courteous people with an amazing civic sense.

 

In any other country, knowledge of the local language would draw you closer to the locals.

 

 

There is some concept called "gaijin" I believe.

 

Also could be that Japan was never colonized by any Industrial giants of the previous eras, so they never experienced any form of indoctrination, as a result they are not sensitive to racial segregation issues, prefer to be in their shells. 

 

Having said that there is a major problem in Japan of Hikikomori where young people lock themselves in their rooms due to self esteem issues and play video games/watch animes. Because of this there is very low birth rate in Japan and their IT industry is suffering where they rely on foreign engineers to fulfill vacant jobs. Looks like change is inevitable for Japan, more foreigners will be arriving there.

Edited by Mariyam

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