An Analysis of Contemporary Manga Culture in Japan and Sweden with a study of the works of Naoki Urasawa

University essay from Lunds universitet/Avdelningen för konsthistoria och visuella studier

Abstract: This thesis is an analysis of contemporary Manga Culture in Japan and Sweden. The objective of the study was to identify the potential and problems for Manga culture and its future in the international market. Also I try to examine the potential of Manga to establish its academic status. This research will be based on the analysis of the transition and features of Manga related with Japanese culture, and a case study of Urasawa Naoki’s works from a feminist and postmodernist points of view. The research method is basically the analysis of literatures, interviews with Manga artists and my own observation. The first chapter starts with the analysis of comic book features from visual cultural point of view, a historical overview of Manga and Japanese cultural introduction in a relation to Manga. The second chapter will analyze Naoki Urasawa who is said to be one of the best contemporary Manga artists in Japan, or the reincarnation of Osamu Tezuka, well-known as the father of Manga. The third chapter focuses on the comparative study of Manga in Japan and Sweden in order to evaluate Manga’s potential and to identify the problems using the interviews of those who work in Manga industry, and finally the last chapter contains the feminist perspectives on Manga. After the systematic comparative research, I try to indentify the dominant features of Manga and Urasawa Manga as well as reactions and expectations from international market and consumers of Manga culture.

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