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Dissertation Information for Michael Maynard

- Michael Maynard

- Ph.D.

- Library and Information Science

- Rutgers University (USA) (2001)

- Hartmut Mokros

- Radha Hegde
- Silvio Waisbord
- Edward Bonfield

MPACT Status: Fully Complete

Title: The consumption of Otherness and preservation of self: Images of the West in Japanese teen magazine advertisements

Abstract: Given the context of globalization, specifically regarding a contestation between the global and local, this dissertation examines the phenomenon of a blurring of cultural identity. In particular, this dissertation addresses the question: How does a culture consume Otherness while at the same time preserving its self-identity?

The site of the research is Japanese print advertising appearing in magazines aimed at teens. This site was chosen because issues of identity within the teen age group are regarded as particularly formative. Data consist of 1,858 unduplicated advertisements found in 58 issues of magazines for Japanese male teens (Fineboys, Hot Dog Press, Popeye) and 58 issues of magazines for Japanese female teens (Pee Wee, Seventeen, Puchi Seven ).

Content analyses following three lines of inquiry--analysis of text, analysis of iconicity, and analysis of relatedness--are conducted. Analysis of text shows, among other findings, that Japanese identity is highly marked in the headline of the ads where textual communication constructs its most intimate form. Analysis of iconicity shows that persons are by and large placed in settings that correspond to their nationhood. For those relatively rare cases where there was a mismatch between person and place, Japanese persons were nine times more likely to be placed in a western setting than westerners were to be placed in a Japanese setting. Analysis of relatedness shows that (1) English text is far more likely to be isolated from the Japanese syllabaries, and (2) Japanese persons and Others rarely appear together in the advertisements. Significantly, this implies that although the Other is included within the world of Japanese advertising, the Other is kept apart, at arm's length.

Although the advertisements tend to show a melange of global and local textual and iconic images, what on the surface may seem a blurring of identity, Japanese culture consumes the Other in such a way that Japanese identity remains firmly anchored in its own space.

The study contributes to research on identity and globalization, as evidenced through magazine advertising, by taking an empirical approach. This micro-analytical empirical study challenges the hyper-globalist perspective that assumes a cultural homogenization of the world.

MPACT Scores for Michael Maynard

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TA = 0
calculated 2008-01-31 06:11:17

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Students under Michael Maynard

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