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Post #764791
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12:12 am, Oct 25 2018
Posts: 92


[Warning: this topic contains spoilers about Death Note]

This morning, during an American Literature class I was attending at university, the professor talked about "hybris" and asked us if we could think of any examples of literary characters dying because they were too confident. A girl raised her hand and told the professor the story of Light Yagami from "Death Note". She was speaking so fluently and naturally. I asked myself "how can she do that? How can she talk about manga during an academic class of American Literature?". Then I noticed a boy - another student - smiling and nodding in approval not too far away. But perhaps more surprisingly, the professor appreciated her speech, agreed with her and said he would check out that "graphic novel" (that's what he called it). There, at that exact moment, I could feel the huge gap between that girl and me. There was a part of me that wanted to scream "I know Light Yagami! I've read Death Note!" and join the conversation but there was also a part - the biggest part - that was opposed to that, that would make me feel ashamed and stupid for mentioning or even liking manga. Now, I love manga and I should be more confident about the things I enjoy, I should appreciate my choices, I should trust my taste. I shouldn't be ashamed of being myself. And that's the point. I should go out of my closet and live my life in the open. Actually I'm afraid of talking about my interests in general, it's not just manga, but I wanted to share this story with other people because I'm sure I'm not the only closet being out there. What I want to tell you is this: don't be afraid of judgement. Don't seclude yourself in your own world, but share your passions with other people. You might ispire someone, just like that girl has inspired me.

Post #764793
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4:50 am, Oct 25 2018
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I both agree and disagree with the point you're making. First of all I do agree with how people should be more open and less introverted about whatever hobby we consume because there are a lot more people out there that feel the same way and we could see about making friends with. Or, you may introduce a person to something that they too will find enjoyable.

However, that being said, I disagree with how we should be completely open about subjects and hobbies. Death Note is a very entry level series for Western consumers when it comes to Japanese media, but what about series like Milk Closet, or Franken Fran, or Key: The Metal Idol. Hell, bring forward something like The Domestic Yapoo and try to get someone to read, much less understand, THAT.
Spoiler (mouse over to view)
Several other people and I are completely puzzled as to what the point of the series even was.

Also, try to get an outsider to read that before using it as an example of why importation of Japanese media should be banned.

Even with much lighter series in Japan, try recommending something like To Love Ru, or Girls Bravo, or Cutie Honey, all series meant for "school age boys", you'd be receiving nothing but strange looks the very next day. There is just too much of a cultural difference between the East and the West for most people to understand, much less get over and move on. Heck, on this site, I can point to that one thread where the guy was complaining about isekais, or even reviews for series such as Legend of Lemnear where people trashed it, not because of story reasons but, because of the art direction.

I hate to say it, but examples such as what happened in your class are pretty much the only point at which you can casually introduce people to media you're interested in. Aside from Death Note, you could have also mentioned series like Wolfsmund, or, if you wanted to be a bit more "obscure", Outlanders. But, then you face the biggest problem which is how do you get them from entering to actually being "in it". And, to be quite honest, not very many people are not going to be "in it", but that's okay. You're not going to be completely on board with everything they do either, but, at least, there's a friendship there.

Where a lot of things go wrong, and what's lead to loads of people becoming hermits, is that we lack communication skills and end up coming off as an autistic sperg in one of two ways. The first way is that we end coming off as a know-it-all, which no one likes, and I don't know what else to say on that subject other than to suggest reading Kine-san no 1-ri de Cinema in combination with How To Win Friends And Influence People (Because this is a personal problem everyone suffers from).
Spoiler (mouse over to view)
Even me...I should stop posting words because I posted enough, didn't I? But, there's one last thing I want to say, and all the previous stopping points didn't feel like a complete thought. AH!

The second way is that we end up actually damaging the hobby that we enjoy. Let me explain. A huge reason people are sheepish about even mentioning that they consume any Japanese media is that there is too much of a stereotype that you're automatically a perverted pig for doing so. Trying to defend themselves and counter this, most individuals have tried deflecting to stating that "those series" don't represent all of Japan, or even going as far as to damning said series (Even ones that they like) just so that they can keep up appearances. And, all they end up doing is damaging, not only themselves but, worst of all, the hobby they like because they end up legitimizing the people that are bringing those claims up. While some people do do this because they are insecure themselves, most of the people do it just to get their kicks or even control other people. Just throw out some base-less bull, and they watch as people defend and attack over a "valid claim" they made on a relevant a "relevant topic". And, having to fight basic instinct, the only correct course of action is to ignore it. Don't even try defending yourself from those people. Own up to it, take pride in what it is that you're a part of, and just let those idiots pass on by.
Spoiler (mouse over to view)
However, don't be a flamboyant faggot about it. That's going to make everyone hate you.


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Post #764800
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7:51 am, Oct 25 2018
Posts: 92


First of all, thank you for taking your time to reply. Reading your perspective was extremely interesting. Second, I do agree on the fact that being completely open about your hobbies could potentially lead to misunderstandings, especially when you are talking to people who know very little about the subject or when there is a big cultural gap. To be honest, I wrote the post in the heat of the moment. I was - and I am - tired of hiding myself and that person was just a reminder of that. But again, thank you for sharing your opinion. I appreciate that.

Post #764801
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10:00 am, Oct 25 2018
Posts: 10


It always depends on who you are talking to. If it's any decent person that is mature and open to things, it's really no problem. For instance, I (I'm in my 20s) had a temp job (mostly accounting stuff, had to suit up every day) for six months at a company and would sometimes go eat with a guy (50+) who is on the board of directors there. So one day on the way back from lunch we started talking about my interest in Japan and I told him about anime and manga etc. He had absolutely no idea of any of it. So I decided to show him some stuff and he agreed to watch it after work together with me. Well, I went with Akira and Rurouni Kenshin: Tsuioku Hen and chose Akira in the end. While it didn't work out as I had hoped (he couldn't appreciate the art and the style but instead commented on how "cute" the characters look), it wasn't a problem at all. Not everyone has to or can fully appreciate different types of media, let alone the finer details of them. The crux here is that he was open about everything. No bias or anything.
Also, be reasonable about your hobbies. Saying something like: "Hi, my name is X and I like manga" is just stupid. First, it's directly in your face. Second, you would appear to be a pretty shallow human if you define yourself through your reading of manga alone. You usually talk with people and topics come up naturally. There is no need to force or hide anything.

Post #764803
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11:08 am, Oct 25 2018
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Quote
Also, be reasonable about your hobbies. Saying something like: "Hi, my name is X and I like manga" is just stupid. First, it's directly in your face. Second, you would appear to be a pretty shallow human if you define yourself through your reading of manga alone. You usually talk with people and topics come up naturally. There is no need to force or hide anything.

Sure, I don't need to force or hide it. However, for instance, if someone asks me what I like and what my hobbies are, I always find myself wondering if I should include manga in my speech or not. Then I always end up avoiding that topic because, as I've already stated in the previous reply, I feel that I'd better hide it for many reasons. And sure, there are mature people who will listen to me with interest and respect. Not everyone is superficial and judges people in a negative way just because they have different tastes. That's one of the reasons why "hiding" this hobby of mine is plain foolish and I don't want to feel ashamed of mentioning a manga if I feel like it.
Also, I've written the post because I wanted to share that experience of mine. Thank you for sharing yours!

Last edited by ForeignerChan at 1:06 pm, Oct 25

Post #764808
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2:29 pm, Oct 25 2018
Posts: 80


nerding is so fashionable nowadays
back in my day if I made that speech my face would've been pixelated and I'd have used a voice modulator

it's a literature class, calm down bro. it's not like you're confessing to real people

Post #764812 - Reply to (#764803) by ForeignerChan
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4:12 pm, Oct 25 2018
Posts: 10


Quote from ForeignerChan
Sure, I don't need to force or hide it. However, for instance, if someone asks me what I like and what my hobbies are, I always find myself wondering if I should include manga in my speech or not. Then I always end up avoiding that topic because, as I've already stated in the previous reply, I feel that I'd better hide it for many reasons. And sure, there are mature people who will listen to me with interest and respect. Not everyone is superficial and judges people in a negative way just because they have different tastes. That's one of the reasons why "hiding" this hobby of mine is plain foolish and I don't want to feel ashamed of mentioning a manga if I feel like it.

Well, I wasn't directly addressing you, just the issue itself (so "you" in a general sense). As for your specific case, as long as you know it's foolish, you will eventually internalize it, as long as you are a reasonable person. And with "reasonable person" I mean how you put things into perspective, how you see others seeing you, how you see yourself etc. Narrow-minded people always exist somewhere. If you encounter them, see them as they are and put them into perspective. That's the important thing. Luckily, for me, thanks to my interests, I pretty much don't encounter them in real life at all. While it's different on the web, it's still the web which is mostly not worthwhile, especially these days. But even here it's easy to avoid places of mass ignorance (mostly social media and popular places with few exceptions). And in the end, life allows us to do what we want to do, so we should go where we want and do what we want (unless it directly harms others of course). Who cares what one unimportant person thinks about you or not.

Post #764815
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6:15 pm, Oct 25 2018
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As long as you know it's foolish, you will eventually internalize it, as long as you are a reasonable person. And with "reasonable person" I mean how you put things into perspective, how you see others seeing you, how you see yourself etc. [...] Who cares what one unimportant person thinks about you or not.

This is definitely something I should work on. Even if you don't know me, I guess you can tell I'm overly self-conscious from the few things I've written here. As you said, I should put into perspective both how I see myself and how I think other people see me.

Quote
And in the end, life allows us to do what we want to do, so we should go where we want and do what we want (unless it directly harms others of course)

Actually, this is my motto, so I couldn't agree more.

Well, now this thread has become more of an introspective analysis about myself than a motivational report of that day. But that's okay because the theories that came out of our conversations made me think a lot. Thank you all for taking your time to reply!

Post #764817
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10:47 pm, Oct 25 2018
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Thanks for sharing! I struggled with fear of judgement when I was younger as well. I think that the older you get, the easier it gets.

Post #764825
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HanaTsuki Hime
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9:00 am, Oct 26 2018
Posts: 254


When I first started reading manga and watching anime & amv's when I was around 13 yo, I wouldn't say I was exactly shy about it, but neither did I speak out freely about my newfound hobby.

Sure, when somehow the topic did come up, most people saw it as something childish and not quite the thing to do, since no one in the area seemed to even have heard of smt like that, my family included, but that didn't change their opinion of me (other than I have some really weird tastes).

I suppose the time factor should also be taken in consideration since that was more than a decade ago and personal computers had only become a thing in the past few years here, so information flow as it is nowadays was nowhere near it. In fact, I only came upon anime/manga when our family bought a pc and I started to surf the net at home.


But of course, my family noticed my new hobby since I had started to spend quite a lot of time sitting by the computer and so I tried to explain to them why I love it so and even showed them some of my favorite amv's in hopes of trying to make them understand why I like watching them so much (didn't quite work out, since then they teased me about Sakura, Sakura etc from then on (I showed them Naruto AMV), but they just shaked their head and was all, well, if you like it... XD)

I even posted my favorite art & amv's in my gallery on a site that was very popular in our country at the time (sort of like facebook/instagram nowadays) cuz I wanted to share my newfound hobby ;D
And when we had to do a presentation about a country in geography in 7th or 8th grade, you bet I did mine on Japan and even sang Naruto's opening Yura Yura in Japanese. Everyone loved it and kept asking me questions and you bet I got a 10 for my presentation cuz I dared to sing in Japanese ;D

And when I went to our capital for high school, it turned out that one of my new friends was also manga/anime fan and from then on I could talk about it to someone in real life as well, not just online.


Now that I think back on it, I think while I didn't exactly shout out to everyone -manga! anime!- those around me obviously knew about it and even if they didn't understand my fascination with it, they accepted it as one of my quirks and were just fine.


Nowadays as well, if it comes up in a conversation, I have no qualms about saying that I like anime & manga and in recent years asian dramas have also now joined the list of my oddness to those around me who don't quite get my love of it all. But they're still ok with it and even show some interest as to what it is, even if they end up not liking it or just remain neutral.

But considering the expanse of globalisation these days due to internet being on everyone's phone's and such, more & more people around my age & younger are already aware of manga/anime/asian dramas and k-pop and such or at least have heard of it and are more accepting of it all. It's like - no big deal, so you like that or that, ok, whatever, interesting.


Of course, it helps if the people around you are accepting/open minded or at the very least not flat out judgemental or rude about it. And meeting people who also share the same hobby also improves the mood cuz talking about it in person is nice (at least to me).

I suppose I'm not really in a closet about it all all, it's just like any other hobby of mine, and if it comes up in a conversation, I'll speak about it freely ?

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Post #764831
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4:35 pm, Oct 26 2018
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Quote
Thanks for sharing! I struggled with fear of judgement when I was younger as well. I think that the older you get, the easier it gets.

I totally agree. As we grow old, we tend to change our perpective, recognize trivial matters as such and care less about them.

Quote
Sure, when somehow the topic did come up, most people saw it as something childish and not quite the thing to do, since no one in the area seemed to even have heard of smt like that, my family included, but that didn't change their opinion of me.

In general, in my country there isn't a comics culture. I'd say that comics are still "labeled a dumbed-down kids medium" here (I'm quoting Joe Quesada). The same goes for manga. Of course and luckily, there are also open-minded people who can appreciate them, even if they don't actually read them, or people who won't tar all works with the same brush and will rightly distinguish high quality from low quality contents.

Post #764837
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6:05 am, Oct 27 2018
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Thank you for sharing your experience ?

I feel like I haven't seen this perspective much since this is a website for Manga lovers but I completely understand that fear of judgement. I had the same feelings probably about 5 years ago, but now there is such a stark contrast between my sentiments on loving manga and anime, especially because I'm fortunate enough to work in an industry full of nerds and nerd culture.

My username is based off of my shame LOL, and now I just find it kind of funny.
None of my friends were that interested in manga/anime so I found myself feeling like the odd one out. There was a period of time where I read so much manga that it turned into a closeted thing out of my fear no one would understand. But over time, I feel like the more I was around people who didn't care and casually mentioned anime/manga, the more I felt like it was actually way cooler to be a fan. Much like in your situation! I found myself being the same judgey person I was afraid would judge me all along. Seeing acceptance in others helps you accept yourself if you already have trouble with that - and I admit I do!

I agree that being less self-conscious about the things you enjoy is important, especially/particularly if it's relevant to the conversation you're having. But I also think surrounding yourself with people who are like-minded and have the same interests is hugely important in gaining that confidence. So I hope you find more nerd friends!

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Post #764855 - Reply to (#764837) by ChildofSecrets
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1:13 pm, Oct 27 2018
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Quote from ChildofSecrets
I found myself being the same judgey person I was afraid would judge me all along. Seeing acceptance in others helps you accept yourself.

Thank you so much for sharing your experience! I'm quoting a specific part of your comment because it totally reflects my situation. I'm my own judge. Probably I'm the strictest one. On top of that, I suffer from a very bothersome and negative cognitive distorsion: jumping to conclusions, or mind reading. In other words, I believe I know what other people are thinking or how they feel about me and I'm convinced that my thoughts are a matter of fact, not a subjective opinion. But in the end, those are my own thoughts and that's what I think. That's why I've written that "I should be more confident about the things I enjoy, I should appreciate my choices, I should trust my taste" and "I shouldn't be ashamed of being myself". It's something that has to do with me, my state of mind, my personality. I have to change my own perspective. But, as you said, finding more nerd friends who share the same interests as me would be a great help. Thank you ?

Post #765854
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7:07 pm, Dec 10 2018
Posts: 4


I'm trying to set up a freelance writing business, and it relies heavily on establishing a strong internet presence. Balancing the split between my online life vs. a professional life online has been an intense innerbattle.

I'm told by several writing senpai that I shouldn't worry about it as long as I properly prioritize professional work over hobby work, but I can't help but feel I'd lose a client or two over some misunderstanding about my involvement with anime/manga. We're not always the most wholesome people at times 😀, especially on social media where anime shitposting cultures flourish.

Going against the grain of society comes with its risks, but if you speak about it proudly and confidently, there's a chance that your enthusiasm will become contagious and you might even convert some people. Some people are going to have a negative opinion no matter what ("You watch cartoon porn? Do you have a fetish for Japanese people?" ), but on the flip side, your confidence and passion could come off as very cool to a few rare individuals, and then you'll know you've met someone who matters ("high quality lead" in marketing terms).


Culture is shifting, though. I used to try and get my closest friends to watch anime with me with mixed results. Now, they're the ones asking me if I'm caught up on Attack on Titan, what they should expect on their trap to Japan, and for anime recommendations.

Post #769292
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2:36 am, May 19 2019
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I’m very open with my love of manga and even light novels, but does anyone think that the Japanese are going overboard with the size of the breasts some of them are bigger than the girl‘s head. Other than that my favorite are harem, fantasy and gender bender genres especially if they have a bit of comedy mixed in.

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