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miyakoji

Cool Japan: Rail Travel

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miyakoji

The broadcast on April 26th of Cool Japan will have the theme of Rail Travel.  This is the broadcast in Japan, on BS.  These are aired about one month later on NHK World, I'll post here when I see it come up.

 

http://www6.nhk.or.jp/cooljapan/en/

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Densha

Thanks for sharing, but ugh I have something against Cool Japan. It's like a 45-minute marketing ad by the Japanese Ministry of Tourism. Way too optimistic and beautified for the likes of me.

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Kabutoni

It's like a 45-minute marketing ad by the Japanese Ministry of Tourism. Way too optimistic and beautified for the likes of me.

 

Like? It IS, as NHK is a government run broadcasting channel. It's not a secret you know ;) For PR abroad it's nice, but it's also targeted at the domestic audience. From all the TV I've been seeing in the past few years, NHK is the prime example of patriotism/nationalistic propaganda material. Luckily, there are also other channels who spend plenty of time on foreigners who visit Japan. This program (Cool Japan) however is only broadcasted on the satellite BS channels, which are on a different TV menu and are not as popular as cable TV channels and thus this program doesn't get much coverage domestically.

 

Anecdote: one example which I really liked was a two or three part episode from "YOU wa Nani shi ni Nippon-he" (YOUは何しに日本へ; Why did YOU come to Japan?), where they were following a group of immigrant workers from Indonesia. These were young fishermen who were working on some small island for a few years before returning home, intensively studying Japanese next to their day job. This is something you won't see so quickly on the major NHK channels.

 

Anyway, any rail related professional program available online (legally) or whatever your source is, is nice to take a peek into the Japanese railway culture ;)

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bikkuri bahn

 NHK is the prime example of patriotism/nationalistic propaganda material.

 

While I find the whole "Cool Japan" theme hokey and contrived, why is it nationalistic?  If it's done in S. Korea or the U.S. it's considered having the interests of the domestic economy in mind (along with a good dose of jingoism).  They don't bash import cars with sledge hammers in Japan, nor do people wrap themselves in the flag.

Edited by bikkuri bahn

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Densha

I know. I know NHK is a government run broadcasting channel but I just had to say my opinion.

This line from the wikipedia article provides a good example of my thoughts about this program: "Laura Miller has critiqued Cool Japan campaign as exploiting and misrepresenting youth subcultural fashion and language."

 

At my university we're always making fun of 「クールジャパン」.

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Kabutoni

While I find the whole "Cool Japan" theme hokey and contrived, why is it nationalistic?  If it's done in S. Korea or the U.S. it's considered having the interests of the domestic economy in mind (along with a good dose of jingoism).  They don't bash import cars with sledge hammers in Japan, nor do people wrap themselves in the flag.

 

If you start comparing Korea and Japan, be ready to get a LOT of hate from both sides. It's a very very touchy subject, although both economies rely on each other's existence. Also, people in Japan don't bash Korean cars, because there aren't many available anyway. Idiots with these ideologies even drive import cars themselves in the first place. Uyoku seem to like big American imports strangely...  And yes, nationalists here DO wrap themselves in the flag, but don't go full-on emotional against the police, since (surprise, surprise) they have relationships to keep up in politics and the police force.

 

Maybe it's just me, but I find the whole 'Cool Japan' nationalistic when it's targeted towards the domestic market. Is it a form of 'dangerous' nationalism? Probably not, since it usually markets economical/social superiority and not aggression or hate towards other countries.

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bikkuri bahn

 And yes, nationalists here DO wrap themselves in the flag, but don't go full-on emotional against the police, since (surprise, surprise) they have relationships to keep up in politics and the police force.

 

In the U.S. wrapping oneself in the flag is considered admirable, and that's among the general public (especially in the conservative center of the nation)- note all the American flags plastered on buses and trains.  American nationalists (patriots) also admire or even worship law enforcement and the military. What is considered the fringe behavior in Japan (uyoku) would get you a free drink in a place like Texas or Alabama. While I find the right distasteful, I am well aware it doesn't represent the majority of Japanese people's opinion.

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