Bechtel, Harper

Freshman, College of Computing and Digital Media

Major: Film and Television

Honors Course: HON 100: Rhetoric and Critical Inquiry

Faculty: Michael Raleigh, Department of Writing, Rhetoric and Discourse

Abstract: Japanese comics, known as manga, and its television medium, anime, began in WWII with the introduction of American comic books. Anime and manga have multiple subgenres that focus on non-traditional gender roles and sexuality such as mahō shōjo (Magical Girl) and shōnen-ai (Boy’s love). Moreover, the evolution of queer characters in mainstream action anime has increased. Cosplay is also a popular way for fans to express and explore unconventional gender norms. This paper examines how all these elements, along with social media, have affected and will continue to affect Japanese and American culture.

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