Your Friend in Japan

Why Does Japan Love Britain-senpai?

Written by HotAnime

Idolmaster Cinderella Girls giantess

As I wrote last time, there’s a long tradition of Japan taking their cues from the “Britain-senpai,” the nation they felt the most affinity for as they were modernizing during the Meiji Era (1868-1912). Whole swaths of modern Japanese society, from the Parliamentary structure of their government to the postal system that delivers your dolphin polishers to why the Japanese drive on the left side of the street, are direct imports from the U.K. The same is true of school life: as I wrote last time, Japan’s famous Sailor Suit school uniforms came directly from England, and every time you hear school bells in an anime, those are the chimes of Big Ben you’re hearing. Why does Japan love Britain-senpai so much?

Some other similarities between Japan and England:

  • A love of tea. Japanese love tea and even have imported the custom of 3 o’clock tea time. (We used to do this in J-List back before we got so insanely busy with customer orders.)
  • A love of curry, which Japanese think of as a “Western” import.
  • Generally famous for being the politest people you’re likely to meet while traveling abroad.
  • Both have a certain “aloofness.” While Americans are famous for pumping your hand and acting like we’ve known you for years even though we’ve just met, it’s my impression that you have to work harder at forming friendships with both Brits and Japanese
  • That whole “world-dominating naval empire” thing.
  • Finally, a love of waiting in line (queuing) for things. Whenever you see a line forming outside a restaurant in Tokyo, you go stand at the back of it because you know the food must be fantastic. The longer the line, the more people want to get it on it.

So if you see people lining up cheerfully of something, they might be Japanese or full movie Grimsby

Yesterday, February 19, marked the 75th anniversary of a sad event: when 120,000 Japanese immigrants and American citizens of Japanese descent (including Los Angeles-born George Takei, then aged 5) were ordered to relocation camps throughout the Western United States. It was a terrible event, a dark spot in the Constitutional history of my country, which must never be repeated. If you thought an anniversary like this might be widely covered here in Japan, well, you’d be wrong. It’s a bit hard to explain, but while Japanese living in Japan know about the incident (it’s in their world history textbooks), they don’t feel a direct connection to the experiences of nikkei Japanese living in the United States, considering Japanese-Americans to be a separate group with a separate set of wartime experiences. I’m of Irish stock, but born and raised in the U.S., and it would be strange for me to feel a connection to Michael Collins, the Irish fighter and statesman responsible for Ireland’s winning its freedom from Great Britain in the 1920s. The way modern Japanese inside Japan view the U.S. internment era might be related to this.

Nendoroid figures from Japan
J-List loves finding great anime figures to post to the site, and we love the Nendoroid figures we sell especially because they’re so cute, and can be put in so many poses. Browse the new Nendoroid offerings on the site now!

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