Japanese B-Girls Celebrate Black Culture

by Alona of HairPolitik

When a friend sent me a clip of these self-described Japanese b-girls celebrating all things young, black and Hip Hop, I was truly blown away by just how far Hip-Hop’s reach is. I for one think it’s a positive thing, but wanted to get your opinions. With phrases like, “Black people look so great and stylish,” I can’t help but be flattered. But then there’s the “When we wear it, it looks vulgar but not with Black people” remark that leaves a question mark on my face. They even tan!

I do find it really interesting that Hina became interested in Black culture after her hair took on a “frizzier” texture. Perhaps there’s more that binds us than just Hip Hop music? What’s interesting is that it took me seeing these Japanese b-girls embrace our style to start thinking about who they are outside of the images I see of them marketed on our airwaves. I’m delighted to see the diverse sizes, hairstyles and clothes the Japanese people rock and I want to know more! One thing's for sure, I’m feeling those braids Hina! Get it!

What do you all think? Is Hip Hop’s influence helping promote positive Black beauty overseas more than it hurts?

Weigh in!



62 Weigh in!:
Anonymous said...

I saw this video a few months ago and when I saw it I was surprised as well. Living in South Korea, I know that in the North East Asian culture lighter skin is preferred on other Asians, so seeing a Japanese woman select to go darker is definitely something to write home to mom about. I think their motive for dressing, eating and living the way they do in this video comes from a truly innocent & admirable mentality. However, I think it's sad that this is the only part of the "black" culture in which they have picked up. There are other parts/people that don't involve braids, weave, music videos and parties.

Anonymous said...

^^ I agree whole heartedly with anonymous 7:45. Innocent but still concerning.

komirra said...

i think this is funny. similar to how some americans obsess over asian cultures, but honestly dont know anything of very much substance about them. other than clothes, food, make-up , etc.her braids are tight though, i wander how she maintains them???

Anonymous said...

“When we wear it, it looks vulgar but not with Black people” It's an honest statement. It's the same as saying "that looks better on you than it does on me" or "you can carry that hairstyle off, it would look crazy on me"

Anonymous said...

um, I 'er..really mixed feelings about this. While I think that it is wonderful that they want to immerse themselves in the "hip hop" culture,I think I have to draw the line at calling a tan, piercings and extensions "having a black night". At the end of the day, they can morph back into their homogeneous society. Black life is not something you acquire or ingratiate yourself into. When will people get it...?

Anonymous said...

They have the wrong impression! Al those characteristics aren't necessarily black, its cute that they admire blacks, but what they think is black isn't really what black is all about!

Anonymous said...

I think it goes to show that many people, regardless of culture, embrace cultures outside of their own. While I do like that they embrace a part of Black culture, it just makes me uncomfortable that they think that hip-hop is the end all be all in Black culture.

Anonymous said...

I'm amazed that they actually could find black looking women in the hip hop videos. That's a whole 'nother post, though. LOL. All jokes aside, I think they mean no harm, but the whole idea of this is insulting to black people. The hip hop videos tend not to be all that representative of "black" life. It's often a fake version of black life...a fantasy.

qubilah shabazz said...

I think that it's great that they are inspired by Black culture. However, as someone mentioned already, Hip Hop is not the only thing that represents Black culture. Often, people outside of the Black community "admire" all of the wrong things. For once, I'd like to see non-Black people admire the Black community for all of the great things we have done and continue to do in this country. Also, the whole "It looks vulgar on us, but not them" statement is very perplexing. To me it seems like they are making the assumption that Black women only wear skimpy clothes. I honestly think it's the other way around. Anytime Black people do something "vulgar" or risky, there's an outcry. But little 10 year old white girls can wear skimpy clothes in a dance performance and it's cute.

Anonymous said...

Cosign all of the above

Anonymous said...

Ditto!

Anonymous said...

honestly this is absurd and feels like a huge insult.

Anonymous said...

Those little girls were cute, but what's sad is that they KNOW they are buying into a fabricated stereotypical lifestyle. They know that B-Girl has ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do with the essence of being Black in America.

They're playing dress up and quoting lines from bad movie scripts in order to be novel and stand out from the rest of the crowd.

Hina probably is a chubby PLANE JANE when she's not rocking those braids and loud makeup. Not saying there's anything wrong with that, but it's not likely to go over too well in her culture. She's not skinny, straight haired or milky complexioned. She gotta do what she gotta do to get hers.

I feel bad for them, but what do they know about "Black Life" other than what they see in the media?

We can blame the media, but ULTIMATELY it's our fault for allowing our offspring to propagate that bulls_it in the first place.

I'm talking to YOU, the parents of Kimberly Denise Jones, Wayne Carter, Aubrey Drake Graham, Onika Maraj and the rest of those fools getting rich from wallowing in the mud of this foolishness.

The perception of Black will not change until we all step up and do honorably by our ancestors.

Proverbs 20:26, Where there is no wood the fire will go out.

Anonymous said...

By Black Lifestyle, I'm assuming they mean Americans. Don't they always... *rolls eyes*

I think it's cute, but not the tanning--since it's harmful for the skin, it's almost like the equivalent of me going to the pharmacy to get some skin bleach.

Also, while I'm not an African American per se, to reduce the black culture to hair extensions and fake nails seems unfair. It's like when people put on an Afro inspired scarf on their head (and don't even tie it right) and think they're "getting in touch with their roots" lol. SMH.

dajewel1982 said...

i don't find this video shocking at all because in the west indies we have PLENTY of Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Taiwanese etc that are part of the culture (a lot of their families have been in the region for generations) so much so they are prevalent artistes in the reggae, dancehall and dancehall queen scenes.

SwirlieCurlies said...

It's nice to see Black American culture being appreciated, but it'd be even better if we were appreciated for other contributions that we've made as a whole as well. baby steps...

Anonymous said...

I think some of us need to stop being flattered every time we hear backhanded compliments, even if they are unintentional and innocent. Hina's braids look as tacky to me as when I see brightly colored synthetic hair on any Black woman.

ITA with Anon 11:26 pm: She and her friends may have an honest appreciation for hip hop culture and that's fine. But knowing the love for white skin and very slender figures in many Asian cultures, this young lady is probably not considered ideal in her culture. But it's not offensive to me. It's like an American girl putting on Goth makeup, multiple piercings, punk clothes, etc. It's not reality, and does not make me feel bonded to these girls in any way.

Kam said...

Found this a bit amusing quite frankly. It's also flattering in a sense but speaks volumes about the typical stereotypes that will always exist because of popular media. Bad weaves, short dresses and long, fake fingernails and eyelashes don't define me. But that's me. For these girls living in their country, that is all they see of us because that is what is publicized and made readily available. They are embracing the style of Hip Hop and quite frankly it's the black 'hip hoppers' who've promoted this style so it is what it is. People will do what they do; more power to them for wanting to try something different and go against the said norm in their society.

Anonymous said...

I really don't know how I feel about this video and the sterotypes we buy into most of the time. But like someone said they really are innocent but at the same time it is insulting how they see black life.

Anonymous said...

No one here has described black culture. I bet majority of black folks can't tell me what black culture is other than what is propagated in the media.

Anonymous said...

Sooo, they aspire to be 'ghetto/hood' black girls. Wow. And Hip Hop is the center of their knowledge of black culture. And because your hair got frizzy, now you want to be black. Mmmmkay.... Sounds like another case of self hate mixed with mistaken identity to me.

Anonymous said...

Is this "black culture"? no wonder we don't get the respect we deserve. "rap culture":maybe?
but "black culture"(NO)

Anonymous said...

There is no such thing as "Black" culture. Black people are not monoliths, the same way that Asian culture, Middle Eastern culture, etc are not all the same thing. There are variations in all.

If they want to mimic a segment of African-American culture then have at it. I, for one, am not impressed. I do not see it as a "compliment" but rather as a fetish. But to each their own.

Anonymous said...

I am all about self love, not self hair. This is NOT flattering to black people. Whites are not flattered we straighten our hair!! If your hair grows out ur head curly, love it. If your skin has no color, love it.

Anonymous said...

This is nothing new. Hip hop culture has been emulated ALL over the world. Not sure if its worth getting upset about. As misguided as it is, it is meant to be a compliment to our "style". While it may be easy to feel insulted, the reality is that kids in other countries see the commercialized version of our culture because that's what's exported. When I first went to Africa, people asked me to dance and rap. Is it any worse than white suburban kids in the U.S. that try to be "black"? BTW, the Japanese also have a huge appreciation for Jazz...much more than most African-Americans and that's part of our culture also.

Hxyzyn said...

I don't know. I am wary of things like this that may contribute to negative stereotypes of blacks. I can easily see this becoming a "All black people look like this, act like this, wear this stuff..." type thing. Since hip hop culture is frequently tied to violence and oversexed images of black women, I just hope they don't buy into the stereotype that most or all black people are like this. Especially since I doubt there are a ton of black people in Japan to dispel these stereotypes.

I've been wary of racism among East Asians towards Blacks and their ideas of what blackness is.

Hxyzyn said...

Also it seems like they're embracing dark skin because it is a counter-culture/sub-culture type thing, not necessarily because they think it's beautiful.

Either way, I don't hate it but I don't love it either.

Anonymous said...

Previous commenter said:
By Black Lifestyle, I'm assuming they mean Americans. Don't they always... *rolls eyes*

I think it's cute, but not the tanning--since it's harmful for the skin, it's almost like the equivalent of me going to the pharmacy to get some skin bleach.

Also, while I'm not an African American per se, to reduce the black culture to hair extensions and fake nails seems unfair. It's like when people put on an Afro inspired scarf on their head (and don't even tie it right) and think they're "getting in touch with their roots" lol. SMH.

MY COMMENT:
They certainly may mean black Americans, however, there are other blacks in the diaspora that contribute to the image. Not all rappers/ hoodrats/ hip hoppers/ unenlightened were born , bred and ' buttered' solely by black American parents. Some of them have Caribbean or African heritage. Poor representation of a 'black image' will negatively affect A N Y O N E who is black (regardless of the country of origin). Trying to separate and throw shade of blame by throwing on a heavy accent from a colonizer or denigrating the black American won't raise A N Y O N E' S status.

I'm going to leave it at that.

Anonymous said...

This is cultural appropriation. They have diluted black culture to extensions, tans,"frizzy hair", braids, urban clothing,etc. It is not okay or admirable. I traveled to Japan and while there I came across some of the stores that sold these products one of them was called "A Nap". That was extremely offensive to me. These girls don't know and understand true hip hop culture. They seriously believe that a majority of black women dress like this. While I was there many Japanese women wanted to take photos with me because they had never seen a black person before. I am not flattered only offended and annoyed.

Anonymous said...

They want to look black, but they don't want to be black!

Jeannette said...

I'm feeling some kind of way about this. I see young people look at these rap videos and think this is all that Black Culture is about. We as Black People are much more complex than the gold, diamonds and flashy cars. The youngin's that feel that hip hop culture is cool appear to have a myopic view about the whole lifestyle. Also, I think that they should LOVE THEMSELVES. There is nothing wrong with the way she looks as a Japanese young Lady. Also, this type of behavior gives me the **side eye** because I know that the "N" word will come flying out of their mouth because they think that's cool too.

Anonymous said...

@ Anon 11:33 am:

Why is it there is always some insecure person in these convos who make lame attempts to insult Black Americans by over-generalizing? Are those Africans who bleach their skin or dependent on relaxers to fry their hair "getting in touch with their roots?" And who is to say someone did not tie their headwrap "right"--if they don't live or come from outside the U.S. they are probably tying it the way they saw some super fly chick in Brooklyn wore it--that's BLACK AMERICAN style--have a problem with that?

And as far as being culturally authentic: I have had the misfortune of living around some of the most GHETTO West Africans and Black people from the Caribbean. And some of the Africans barely spoke English. So now you get to explain how these individuals are not representative of your country as a whole, wherever you came from. You need to check yourself before you even begin to think remarks like this, you will end up looking ignorant each time.

Anonymous said...

Anon @ 5:58--- Yea, I'm getting f*cking tired of non-American blacks throwing Black Americans under the bus. As if all non-American blacks are shining examples of moral superiority and uprightness. I beg to differ.

Especially if they have moved here or their parents moved here for a better education, job, etc. Like seriously, if all the blacks in your native countries are so superior, why the hell did you or your parents move here? Seriously...sick of it.

Anonymous said...

Black women in The States want to embrace white and european culture, so why is it so strange that other people want to embrace our culture?

Anonymous said...

@ Anon 1:51 pm: I will reference the other comment that there is no one Black culture.

I am American, studying Buddhism because of my frustration with Christianity, my favorite writer is James Baldwin, I detest rap music but love old school r&b and afro punk. A co-worker has younger relatives who are Jack and Jill members, she only listens to gospel and is a devout Christian who volunteers for her church. My niece (a typical young American) lives for rap music, Facebook and hanging out with her sorority sisters from a predominantly Black sorority. That should begin to answer your question.

EmmaG said...

@anon 6:10
Who in this write-up was throwing black Americans under the bus? You are annoyed that some Japanese girls are trying to copy a part of your culture? You want to make a distinction between American blacks and west Indian blacks and African blacks? There was no need to go there. This blog is comfort food for all black women. Please keep your xenophobic comments to yourself. Perhaps some of us need to leave this site and find a blog that focuses on helping us with our hair and not having to read about your personal hangups. No wonder we can't get ahead. Anyway, I wonder who did her hair. It looks really good. If she wants to try, let her. At Jamari.com blacks are even experimenting with african inspired kimonos. I want one. We are a very versatile and influential people. Very nice.

kimvan said...

There are hairdressers in some big cities here in Japan who do braids for an astronomical amount. The girls and guys who 'embrace' this part of black culture are not seen as cool here in Japan and actually do think all black people are as personified by the videos they watch. They are called a particular word here and no one takes them serious. Their practice of trying to look black only helps to reinforce certain negative stereotypes of black here. As far as I can see they are the only ones benefitting from this - by 'getting' away from being Japanese for a bit.

Anonymous said...

EmmaG:
The initial distinction was made by the poster Anon 11:33am. She made it clear that she is not African American. Please re-read ALL of the comments before castigating the wrong person. She stated " By Black Lifestyle, I'm assuming they meant Americans. Don't they always ….. *rolls eyes* "

Please cite who "threw whom under the bus first" which would rightfully elicit the responses to this type of nonsense which followed.

I wholeheartedly agree with and understand the sentiments of
Anon 4;26pm. Anon 5:58pm AND Anon 6:10pm. VERY WELL SAID!!! Anon 6:10pm , you said it AAAALLLLLL! That is all.

EmmaG said...

at 10:14pm
I couldn't care less who stated it first or last. It was written and agreed to by yourself as well. You have some serious hangups. It wasn't VERY WELL SAID!!. You probably feel inferior to those people why you percieve them to act a certain way that annoys you. No-one can make you feel that way and if so, then stop going to the islands to get your groove back. Perhaps you are just jealous. Leave it alone. Don't you have some two stranded twist or pineapple buns to do?

Anonymous said...

I disagree with the opionions of Anonymous 4:26, 5:58 and 6:10. I read and reread the statement of Anonymous 11:33 a.m. about the assumption of lifestyle being African American and interpreted as the Japanese individuals were limited in their exposure of "black culture." I did not interpret it as being condescending to African Americans. On the other hand the responses that were posted were extreme, but those are your opinions. And, as the Bible says out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks (Matthew 12:34).

BTW I have often encountered what I term as "closet West Indians." Those are the ones whose grandparents or great grandparents came from "the islands" but wouldn't dare let anyone know it's part of their lineage. I often chuckle to myself at the fact that those slave ships did a number on us; you know split the family up and drop a few off at the different ports. Really, we are more alike than you care to think, Ghetto West Africans and all.

Renee

Anonymous said...

I find this to be somewhat insulting if these so-called "B-boys and B-girls" believe that this is the only representation of black culture. I believe that they should know better than that especially if they have access to the internet or any type of technology that allows them to look up this part of black culture then they are surely able to explore all of the richness of our people and culture. Now if their goal is to immerse themselves in the hip-hop, club-hopping, video-girl fantasy and this is there way of standing out to do so, then to each his own. But please don't mistake it for black culture (maybe hip-hop culture), I am college educated, enjoys some hip-hop and a nice lounge but I definitely don't think I need to dress and act like this to enjoy these types of activities. However, I don't believe they mean to offend anyone.

Anonymous said...

Why is that when someone voices a strong opinion and one that someone else vehemently disagrees with, it results in accusations of jealousy or 'having hangups'?? Just because someone thinks a certain way does not make them jealous of someone who would like for them to have a different opinion nor does it necessarily mean that they have hang ups. We are all entitled to our opinions. Even if those opinions make some people feel extremely uncomfortable. Yes, I see why we "can't get ahead".

To me, these Japanese girls are trying to push the envelope of social norms in their country. Kinda like Punkrockers of the 80s did here in the U.S. They look like they are sporting costumes/ exaggerations of a certain segment of black culture. It would be great if one could be assured that they (along with Japanese society at large) understand that this is just that- an exaggeration of a particular segment of the culture.


Kaye

Anonymous said...

When I travel to places where there aren't a lot of black people I expect to be sought out as unusual because I AM unusual (in that place) and it's human for people to be curious and I don't mind it at all. The challenge comes when (usually younger people) take it further and start asking what it was like to grow up in the 'hood, do I know such-and-such hip-hop group, etc. I have known black folks traveling abroad who will put on a persona just to curry favor with the locals (and to be honest, it's usually black men trying to get girls). Me, I'm too old for that, lol...I grew up in a suburb and stopped listening to commercial hip-hop years ago. I'm just ME...and I present myself as such. How well that works depends on who I'm around.

What these girls are doing is not surprising in the slightest. People appropriate other cultures all the time, especially in the age of the Internet. I'm not entirely familiar with Nikki Minaj's work but isn't she appropriating a kind of Japanese aesthetic?

Moonchyldcrab82 said...

I appreciate that these Japanese women are able to find beauty in other cultures and I think we should all step outside of our comfort zone and explore other cultures. BUT the images that they've latched onto are ones that a lot of AA women have been trying to distance themselves from.

But at the end of the day...we only have ourselves (Americans) to blame for these images making it half way around the world. If we supported more positive images of black women...Ledisi, Vivian Green, Jill Scott, E. Badu, etc... then these would be the images of black women that the rest of the world gets to see. We can't expect people half way around the world to appreciate our natural beauty if we don't even appreciate it. The black women that get the most attention in the US are the Beyonce, Kelly Rowland, Nicki Minaj types (weave down to your butt, lots of make-up, and skimpy clothes).

When we do better they'll do better...

Anonymous said...

This is not a new trend (saw it in Shibuya, Harajuku, Shinjuku, and Yokohama 12 years ago when I lived there) but since the advent of YouTube, it has become much more available to see globally. When I was a teacher there, I likened it to American suburban teens getting into the "emo" scene (or the goth scene from my teen years) which also involves non-natural styles/colors of hair, makeup, skin tone, and dress. Honestly, I was a little bit impressed with the dedication that these girls (and boys!) invested their whole beings into becoming something that they admired and wanted to be as much like as possible. Yes, it is not a well-rounded or accurate depiction of Black culture, but I don't think that's what this subculture's intention is. When you're in your teens/early 20s, it's all about your IMAGE and these kids (yes, I'm old enough now to consider a 20 year-old a 'kid'!) live, breathe, and BUY whatever they have been fed by the media and tune themselves to it as much as they can... for a few years anyway..

Anonymous said...

Anything featured in media is somehow on a pedestal in today's world. If you haven't travelled outside the U.S. you may not realise how pervasive images from the U.S. are in almost EVERY culture or country in the world. This includes Hiphop music. These girls simply idolise these artists and it should come as no surprise. I think that for these girls, it may just be a phase just like the mother said. The only thing I'm worried about is the "deep tanning", that will most likely lead to cancer! I think the girl herself is pretty, the braids are well done, that's something I would not have expected to see in Japan.

For those of you who are upset that these girls think hiphop ="black" culture. It's all about visibility, other aspects of "black" culture whether it's American, African, Carribean, Afro-latino etc, just aren't.

@Moonchyldcrab82, artists like Beyonce, Nicki Minaj have a formidable marketing machine behind them. That's why they are known worldwide. The marketing behind Jill Scott, Ledisi etc cannot compare, they are very talented women but without that extra push it's hard for them to become a household name worldwide. That's the big difference! Sad but true!

Moonchyldcrab82 said...

@Anon 1:59PM

I see what you're saying but marketing is irrelevant if we don't support them. Think about how much marketing they spend on some of these movies only to have them BOMB at the theaters. If Americans could sell out a neo-soul concert or a rap concert that wasn't all "B!tches, Hoes, and Glocks" in 5 minutes like a Jay-Z concert, trust and believe those are the kinds of concerts we would see more of. Marketing today reflects what people already want to see. So we need to re-educate them (with our DOLLARS) into showing more positive images.

Moonchyldcrab82 said...

Buisness 101...no company is going to keep pouring their money into something that's not profitable (unless there's some sort of belief or stance behind it). When we stop supporting negative images, they'll stop showing them PERIOD

Sophie said...

I don't like the idea of hip hop being our ambassador to the world. I am black. I don't like hip hop. I think it puts forth an image a lot of times that is very unflattering, but it is pervasive. I think this is a hindrance mainly because it links "blackness" as an ethnic background with some kind of lifestyle that I don't always agree with, and that gets on my nerves. That's when we fall into the "acting black" trap. I think am always acting black... because I *am* black.

Anonymous said...

Beyonce- African American
Kelly Rowland- African American
Nikki Minaj- of Trinidad descent (Caribbean)
Rihanna- From Barbados (Caribbean)


These four are currently the most popular black female artists worldwide. I would think it safe to assume that the images they project are the ones that people will latch onto and try to emulate as part of a 'black culture fantasy'.

Moonchyldcrab82, I totally agree with you. If WE stop supporting these images as the predominant one, others will make a shift too.

For the folk who are arguing about African Americans (being solely responsible) vs other blacks in the diaspora, I suggest taking a hard look at where these celebrities come from and re-arrange your thinking about who is responsible for assisting in the promotion of these negative (hoochie) images. As far as I can see, it's NOT just African Americans. The responsibility is far wider.

Anonymous said...

I think she means "ghetto" culture, not black culture. And those braids look ta-cky. It's innocent enough, but I am NOT flattered.

Anonymous said...

Wow, pretty interesting. While I don't take any offense that these girls want to embrace black culture, I feel that this "fantasy world" that they live in makes me wonder their preception of their self worth. Do they value black culture more and place less value on their own? I don't know but it is kind of disturbing. Why are they trying so hard? More importantly, why does the hp hop culture have such a strong hold?

April said...

When I was in high school I used to see a an Asian B girl on the train sometimes with black and blonde Janet Jackson Poetic Justice braids and she rocked them well. Hip hop may be the most readily available aspect of black culture to the ones who who are not black and admire it. I see no wrong in this. Hopefully though more of our positive culture will be explored by those who are only informed, to an extent albeit, about hip hop.

MelMelBee said...

I'm not offended by the video as much as I am offended by the way we are portrayed in the media....in this country and abroad. Is Hip Hop a part of Black culture? YES.....It's origins are from African/African-American cultural experiences. Therefore, it is understandable that people in other countries who have not been immersed in African/Black AMERICAN/WESTERN culture would believe that we are "those same people" who are portrayed in the media/music videos, etc, especially if that is all they are exposed to.

I'm sure if the average person attempted to emulate Japanese people, we'd first begin to eat sushi and eat with chopsticks and search for little wooden sandals to be worn with white socks, and think we should look like a Geisha, because we, as Americans, are fed stereotypical images of other cultures, and make generalizations especially because our society makes certain that folk are Americanized when they move here. Therefore, until we PICK UP A BOOK, begin to travel and visit other places and actually learn from people of different cultures, we are bound to make generalizations and stereotypical comments about those cultures....just like these ladies in the video have done about us.

makeareplica said...

i must say that the english translation was not exactly "on point", but they did their best.there is no direct translation for hip hop/ black urban lifestyle. If you spoke japanese, you would see that they were talking about one sector within black culture. from the word choices they used, it's clear that they did not believe they were emulating all aspects of "black-ness". this is one of the issues that occurs when translating from a language like japanese. i do believe that these girls are genuinely sincere and fascinated with the urban appearance. there are many young adults in japan that use chemicals to "nappify" their hair to resemble ours (they sport some flyyyy afros). those teens would be considered 100% retro in the U.S.

Dee Emerald said...

I think her mum said it all, when one's young, one wants to try all these things. it's fun, nothing to be mad about.

Tiffany said...

I would be concerned about the tanning, I think thats a tad much. When I was a tween I would imitate Tootie's hair from Facts of Life everyday, mushroom or ponytails, albeit she was Black. But you know what they say, Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.

Anonymous said...

This is just in Japan. When I visited China for a month, three years ago, all of the "in" fashion was hip hop inspired. This was true for the men and women's fashion. There were even afro wigs and dreads on the mannequins! lol. And this wasn't in just one place in China, I went to Beijing, Shanghai, and Nanjing and this was true for every city I went to.

ShebZ said...

I find it hilarious that one of the girls in the store was rocking what was either hair dyed blonde or a blonde which was a flowing wavy look(sort of a Beyonce look). It funny to me because that's an imitation or a white aesthetic. So now this Japanese girl is imitating a black aesthetic which is an imitation of a white aesthetic.

hyspin said...

As my friends who visit japan would agree that Japan is a Xenophobic chameleon culture. They love to imitate the all the most popular qualities of every culture, I found out last year there is a strong dancehall culture (jamaican influence) and their moves are pretty impressive. This is not a new thing. If your look into another type of fashionable lifestle GYARU (the style popular for the ultra big eye look) you will find that hiphop influence in certain types of Gyaru.

As for xenophobic that is also true they love to mimic but don't do well with with actual interaction with other cultures even their neighbours in China will be avoided as soon as they open there mouth. Don't get me wrong if you stay in the big cities especially Tokyo and maybe Kyoto you should have less of a problem with that.

It could be a good thing but with Hip Hop as great as it can sound the amount of bad stereotypes it continues to perpetuate makes it hard for us to get out these negative perception of blacks internationally. My worry is why cultures who don't have any negative history with blacks will only see negative imagery and behaviour and not see great aspects of the culture which just creating a negative global view of blacks in a whole which will be harder to correct than it would have been to teach from scratch.

Anonymous said...

I don't really see much wrong with this except that she should not use another culture as a substitute for her own just because it's cooler, so as long as she respects/appreciates her culture as wellas others she's cool. Also I would rather they recognized this was hip hop culture not black culture, but you can't really blame her for thinking of hip hop as black culture because the media might play a big role in what aspects of black culture she is exposed to.

WaterBaby said...

I have mixed feelings about this. On the one hand it's sad that the weaves, skimpy clothes, tons of makeup, and the many piercings are what they think we are like but that just opens my eyes wider to how the media portrays us so it's not their fault. On the other hand, I find it quite interesting that they want to look more like the few black women that are in hip hop vidoes these days and not the non-black and racially ambiguous women that are usually held to the highest standard of beauty in today's hip hop culture.

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...