Role of Mass Media in Japanese Popular Culture Reception in Southeast Asia

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Role of Mass Media on Japanese Popular Culture Reception in Southeast Asia Countries Case study: Indonesia

Written by Mirah Mahaswari

Department of Communication Studies Faculty of Social and Political Sciences Gadjah Mada University Indonesia Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Role of Mass Media on Japanese Popular Culture Reception in Southeast Asia Countries Case study: Indonesia

Abstract The study of popular culture can be seen from three main approaches. The first debate will be on how popular culture able to penetrate the global limit and produced massively to the society. Second, the influence of popular culture on the contemporary society. Third, the role of mass media in popular culture. Concerning in communication studies, the third approach will be the main idea of the essay. The next explanation is about the role of mass media freedom on popular culture reception in society. Indonesia will be the locus to elaborated on how the level of media freedom in Indonesia affected the dissemination of Japanese popular culture to the society.

At a glance popular culture Popular culture is a topic that was much discussed in the last decade. The study of popular culture became more diverse, ranging from discussing the issue in music, fashion, lifestyle, until the political sphere. Historically, according to MacDonald,1 popular culture developed since the 1800s. Since that time, Western culture split into two areas: the traditional culture which he calls "high culture" and “popular culture". Popular culture is a culture that simply and directly being an object of mass consumption, while high culture is the result of individual expression of an artist.2 In line with these thoughts, Storey3 states that popular culture is seen as a residual category in comparison with high culture. In this case, high culture is the result of individual creations deserve moral and aesthetic response. Meanwhile, mass culture is seen as a symbolic practices manipulative, public fantasy that is automatically taken out. Referring to Strinati (1995)4, in general, popular culture is defined as the culture of mass-produced with the help of industrial technology, professionally marketed to the public aimed at consumers and bring profit. Gradually, popular culture is present in daily interactions, to be a need and 1

Dwilight MacDonald, “The Theory of Mass Culture”, dalam Bernard Rosenberg dan David Manning White (eds), Mass Culture, The Popular Arts in America. Illinois: The Free Press. P.65-70 2 Idy Subandi Ibrahim (ed). 1997. Ecstasy Gaya Hidup. Badung: Mizan. P.52 3 John Storey. 1993. An Introductory Guide to Cultural Theory and Popular Culture. New York: Harvester Wheatsheaf. P.15-17 4 Dominic Strinati. 1995. An Introduction to Theories of Popular Culture. London: Routledge. P.2-5

desire. Popular culture became a social phenomenon and the entire practice of human life from music, entertainment, shows, food, to sports.5 Unknowingly, popular culture easily found in everyday life. I simply concept that the attention to popular culture focused on three main points. First, popular cultural attraction was so massive that can not only reach a limited circle of a mass group within a society, but far into almost all boundaries, both physically and mentally throughout the world community. It has been a culture within the global space. The general question is what the appeal of this popular culture products that can suck people's interest at a rate far greater than other products that have been before.6 Second, related to the first, massive power of popular culture to reach such a large mass, in turn, attract the attention of some people to know the positive or negative effects resulting from the cultural practices of the older.7 Questions generally refers to see how far the influence caused by the popular culture to the masses who consume them. From here, then developed criticism in two...
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