Saturday, January 18, 2014

Why a Japanese would 'worship' America

When I first began interviewing Kotaro, I was eating Sushi, and I was surprised that he went so far as to say that he did not want to try because it reminded him of Japan. Kotaro is a foreign student from Japan, and from the very first day that I met him. His embrace of the American Culture was very bold. When I asked him about this. He was so bold as to say that he worshipped America. I further saw that he went so far as to somewhat forsake his Japanese Culture. Some people may think that his decisions and attitude is of extremism, for Kotaro wrote a book of his life. 70% of the readers of the autobiography thinks that "I am stupid," but I see that he is a great serviceable man. In this interview and seeing his informed personality, this article will introduce you to the culture of Japan as well as why a Japanese foreign student as Kotaro loves America.

One of the main things that Kotaro loves is the individualism of America. Japanese seems to have a norm that is to be expected. When someone is odd, there is a big scene. I remember seeing this in animated cartoons, and I wondered if it was true. Upon the sight of odd behavior on the streets, many people gather around to see what's going on, and the peer pressure comes to seek to have him not be radical. Choice and individualism seems to be shunned.

Kotaro saw restrictive customs to be able to express himself in his desires. Families and peers seem to be too conservative and sensitive. Kotaro spoke of the girls in Japan. He feels a weird pressure from everyone to act a specific way because everyone was so delicate. In any hint of a guy trying to befriend a girl, a guy would be faced with a girl that thinks that he wants a serious dating relationship. In the family and peer relationship everyone is sensitive. One could not befriend anyone. The family has an overbearing care. Kotaro asked me about my parents, and I said that my Thai mother was of the similar attitude, but the Japanese culture he described was of overbearing conservatism. The culture is one that takes the low risk route. In Kotaro's 'extreme' choices, his parents convince him to not do his desires. When I said that my father lets me choose what I want to do, he respected that a lot as my father is of the American mindset, not convincing to live a life that they want of me. In this conservatism comes a overly relaxed culture he pointed out. Imperfection seems to be accepted, and the American Culture has an accountability to be the best of best.

This lack of choice is also reflected in the school system. The only choice that he was confronted with was in Sophomore year of High School, choosing between a science focus or an art focus in schooling. There seemed to be a lower standard for the art route as Kotaro chose. He had no decisions in the classes that he took except for those two focuses. The science path was of a higher education with more math, and they would go off to a higher education and success more often than the art route with less math and science.

Some more things that he liked of the American culture is the diversity and abundance of everything. The Japanese culture has its race as 99 percent of the people, so he finds it very boring without choice, wearing the same bland thing everyday. Most every person at our college is colorful and interesting, looking around you see all different races. The abundance of food is loved too. Japanese eat so little, and he liked the coming of obese culture of America.
I liked how this interview opened up to a deeper work. Kotaro  put his book there to purchase on The books name is Paying the Price for my Dream. It is a thirty page short biography of his life, but it goes to great lengths to explain many things of his Japanese and coming to America life. He was forsaken by his family under the circumstances that he endured. The work is so deep that it is secretly written for his father; although, he writes chastening words that lashes out at him. It is actually an apology of sorts.

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