The cover of Manga Kenkanryu, in which some of the controversial issues the book covers are mentioned. Click to see a translation.
(Manga – The Anti-Korean Wave)
|Written by||Sharin Yamano|
|Original run||26 July 2005 – 30 April 2009|
Manga Kenkanryu (マンガ 嫌韓流 Manga Kenkanryū?), translated in English as Hating the Korean Wave or Hate Korea: A Comic is a controversial Japanese manga written by Sharin Yamano with a theme that draws on anti-Korean sentiment (ja:嫌韓) in Japan. The manga started as a webcomic on the author's website entitled CHOSEN, and after being refused publication for two years, it was published by Shinyusha and released in Japan on 26 July 2005, after which it triggered a Japanese internet movement.
The book was released in the midst of the recent "Korean Wave" pop culture boom in Japan, which was contributed to by imports of Korean TV dramas and other pop culture imports. This has led to increased positive awareness of Korea; it has also triggered a phenomenon known as the "Hate Korea Wave" (after which the book is named), due to increased awareness of various Japan–Korea disputes and the fanning of previously existing anti-Korean sentiment in Japan. The book's tagline says "There is one more Korean Wave that the media is hiding—the Hate Korea Wave!" (マスコミが隠しているもう一つの韓流、それが・・・・・・「嫌韓流」だ!!) The book is controversial both in and outside of Japan because of opinions expressed in the book concerning major historical disputes and ongoing issues between Korea and Japan.
- 1 Plot
- 2 Reception
- 3 Criticism
- 4 Historical inaccuracies
- 5 Contents on 2002 World Cup games
- 6 Sequels and related books
- 7 See also
- 8 Further reading
- 9 References
- 10 External links
The main character of story, Kaname Okiayu (沖鮎 要 Okiayu Kaname?), a Japanese high school senior, learns about alleged game-fixing scandal that kept winning streak of South Korean soccer team during 2002 FIFA World Cup and ugly behavior by their supporters. Okiayu becomes a college freshman, and he and his female classmate Izumi Aramaki (荒巻 いつみ Aramaki Izumi?) joins “Far East Asia Investigation Committee” (極東アジア調査會), an extracurricular group led by Ryuhei Sueyuki (末行 隆平 Sueyuki Ryūhei?) (a junior) and Tae Soeuchi (添内 多枝 Soeuchi Tae?) (a sophomore). The group is mainly devoted to the study of historical issues between Japan and Korea and very critical of Korea. Okiayu and Aramaki learn many ugly sides of Koreans. The group participates in debates with a pro-Korean study group and a visiting students group from South Korea – both ignorant with historical knowledge and unable to make logical arguments – and completely rebuts their pro-Korean opinions, humiliating them.
The main topics of book includes alleged 2002 FIFA World Cup game scandal, Japanese compensation to Korea for colonial rules, Opposition to Zainichi Koreans suffrage, Korean plagiarism of Japanese culture, criticism of pro-Korean mass media in Japan, criticism of Hangul (Korean alphabet), Japan–Korea Annexation, Liancourt Rocks dispute, and criticism of Korean Wave in Japan.
The book was created with the aim of spreading the "detestable reality of South Korea", and encouraging identification of South Korea with these negative aspects, with the idea that by asserting this through the medium of manga, the ideas would “make as much of a hit as the Gōmanism Manifesto did” (said by the author himself, according to the Kenkanryu Official Guidebook). Readers with previous anti-Korean sentiments have accepted the author's viewpoint ("correct understanding of South Korea") wholeheartedly.
Well-known revisionist writers have contributed four written articles to the book, however: Kanji Nishio (honorary chairman of the Japanese Society for History Textbook Reform) on the Korean people, Kohyu Nishimura (described as a "publicist") on the South Korean media, Takahiro Ōtsuki (a professor who was a member of the Society when it was formed) on the "Hate Korea Trolls" (嫌韓厨; Kenkanchū), and Masao Shimojō on the Liancourt Rocks dispute. The book also shows marked influence from the "liberal historical viewpoint" held by the Japanese Society for History Textbook Reform, and the book holds a historical viewpoint common to that of Yoshinori Kobayashi's Gōmanism Manifesto series (the fact that his name is given on the section about the ongoing debate over comfort women is also seen as a sign of his influence [Kenkanryu 1/Official Guidebook]).
Popularity in Japan
|This article's section called "Popularity in Japan" needs additional citations for verification. (June 2010)|
- The book had been refused publication for two years, and some Japanese newspapers refused to advertise the book.
- When Amazon.co.jp started selling preorders of the book, it quickly rose to the #1 bestselling ranking.
- According to the Shinyusha official website, the number of copies printed (as of September 2005) is 300,000.
- While the book reached the shelves of bookstores according to schedule on the release date, there was a general shortage of copies and the book immediately following the release date became difficult to find. It is thought that bookstores which did not carry it were few, however. The publisher quickly reprinted the book to meet demand.
- The book was so successful (450,000 copies sold) that a sequel, Manga Kenkanryu 2 was released on 2006-02-22
Media responses from Japan
- In the September 30th evening issue of the Yomiuri Shimbun, a review appeared criticizing the book as follows: "Is this not an example of the manipulation of the reader's impression through beautifying those who support you and portraying those who oppose you otherwise, which we have criticized China and Korea for doing?" This sentence also refers to outspoken right-wing social critic Yoshinori Kobayashi’s practice of glorifying himself and demonizing opponents such as Hachirō Taku and Satoshi Uesugi, which is frequently criticized.
- A positive comment about the book was written in the Chunichi Shimbun evening edition’s Ōnami Sazanami (大波小波, Billow and Ripple) column supporting the book's stance on the Liancourt Rocks dispute.
- On October 28th 2003 TBS Sunday Morning news program, Tokyo governor Shintaro Ishihara was shown at a rally in support of Japanese who had been abducted to North Korea, during which he remarked on camera, "It is not my intention to justify the history of Japan's annexation of Korea 100 percent", but a technician erroneously superimposed a subtitle that read, “It is my intention…” The book covers the subject of Ishihara suing TBS for libel. The book does not mention that four concerned persons sent documents to the prosecutor, or that the Tokyo District Public Prosecutor's Office dropped Ishihara's case on the grounds that there was "no malicious intent on the part of TBS".
- The 2005-07-26 issue of Tokyo Sports reported that the major newspapers Asahi Shimbun, Yomiuri Shimbun and Sankei Shimbun had refused to advertise the book. Other sports newspapers, including Evening Fuji (also published by Sankei Shimbun), however, advertised the book.
- In the Amazon.co.jp Japanese Books Top Sales Rankings printed in the Asahi Shimbun from July 11-17, there was the explanatory message that “*Comics are not included in the rankings” (ランキングの対象書籍にコミックは含まれていません), and the Amazon rankings in other newspapers also showed this message. This message had not been shown before when the books were deleted from the Asahi rankings for July 4-10. This was contradicted, however, when the August 1-7 rankings showed the controversial manga Neo Gomanism Manifesto Special: On Yasukuni.
- On the August 15-21 rankings, the “*Message From Amazon.co.jp: The manga titles removed until now from the rankings, Manga—The Hate Korea Wave and Manga—An Introduction to China: A Study of Our Bothersome Neighbors, will be included in the rankings from now on.” (※Amazon.co.jpからのおことわり：これまで漫画のタイトルにつき除外しておりました『マンガ嫌韓流』と『マンガ中国入門 やっかいな隣人の研究』を今回よりランキングに含めております。) was shown, and the two books then occupied the #1 and 2 rankings respectively.
Response from New York Times
The 19 November 2005 New York Times article "Ugly Images of Asian Rivals Become Best Sellers in Japan" by controversial Japan critic Norimitsu Onishi describes Kenkanryu and another manga, Introduction to China as "portraying Chinese and Koreans as base peoples and advocating confrontation with them". The article also discusses how the book reveals some of the sentiments underlying Japan's current worsening relations with the rest of Asia, as well as the country's longstanding unease with its own sense of identity. It claims that the book is influenced by how much of Japan's history in the last century and a half has been guided by the goal of becoming more like the West and less like Asia and how the book perhaps inadvertently betrays Japan's conflicted identity of a longstanding feelings of similarities toward the West and superiority toward the rest of Asia.
Responses from Internet communities
|This article's section called "Responses from Internet communities" needs additional citations for verification. (June 2010)|
- After the release, arguments both against and for the book became the focus of many blogs and message boards.
- Immediately following the announcement of the decision to release the book, it became an active topic in personal blogs, 2channel and other message boards, and movements calling for the preordering or purchase of the book developed.
- The book has been widely promoted on websites, blogs and message boards such as 2channel and there are cases of inserting content directly from the book by websites criticizing South Korea (many reproducing photographs directly from the book) in the form of supplementing the book's contents, and also in the form of introducing information raised on the 2channel Hangul Board. As shown through the book's bibliography, a significant portion of the book's content (e.g. the World Cup and Korean plagiarism issues) was also sourced from websites.
- Alongside cries to “Drive away the Hate Korea heat wave!”, there were messages posted at the websites of Rakuten and other online stores calling for the burning of the book, while others called for the buying out of all available copies.
Responses from Korea
- Immediately after the announcement of decision to release the book, it was simultaneously reported in the Chosun Ilbo, the Dong-a Ilbo, the Joong Ang Ilbo, the Yonhap News Agency, and the SBS (Seoul Broadcasting System), and throughout the South Korean media.
- As a response to Manga Kenkanryu, South Korean cartoonist Yang Byeong-seol (양병설) published a cartoon book titled "Hyeomillyu" (혐일류; 嫌日流) – meaning "the anti-Japan wave" – in 2006. The book criticizes sexuality in Japan and statements by Japanese politicians regarding Japanese colonial rule in Korea. Another South Korean cartoonist, Kim Sung Mo (김성모), also published a cartoon book of the same title in 2006. The main topics of the book are Japanese militarism, Yasukuni Shrine, and Liancourt Rocks disputes. Although these cartoon books were published in both South Korea and Japan, they were not as influential as Manga Kenkanryu. About 5,000 copies of Yang's book have been sold in Japan; very few have sold in South Korea. Kim's book has sold about 20,000 copies in Japan, but only about 380 copies in Korea as of 2010.
|This article's section called "Criticism" needs additional citations for verification. (June 2010)|
Due to the controversial content of the series, there have been many criticisms of the manga, the main complaint being that the series portrays Koreans in a negative light, while glossing over anything negative related to the Japanese. Critics cite examples of this both in the character portrayals of people representing their respective groups and in the commentaries actually made by various characters.
Regarding character portrayals, one complaint in The New York Times article is that “The Japanese characters in the book are drawn with big eyes, blond hair and Caucasian features; the Koreans are drawn with black hair, narrow eyes and very Asian features.” Kenkanryu 2 objects to such a view; the author states that “this expression is a typical expression in cartoons in Japan.” (Kenkanryu 2, P267) Another common critique is that the way in which the characters' personalities are presented is heavily one-sided and purposefully harmful to the image of Korea and its proponents in the manga: figures on the Japanese "side" have generally carefree, enjoyable attitudes and come from a diversity of backgrounds; figures on the Korean side, on the other hand, consist only of arrogant members from educated, elitist backgrounds, leading to a heavily distorted, stereotyped presentation of Koreans.
Their main criticism, however, is based on the actual commentary and opinions espoused by some of the characters in the manga. One such example is the claim that South Korea owes its current success to Japan, while overlooking the negative aspects of Japanese occupation (e.g. human rights violations and forced assimilation) in favor of the claim that Japan was the impetus for Korea's modernization.
The anti-Korean contents of the book come mainly from already-existing opinions espoused by critics of South Korea, though put in a manga format. Critics argue that by transferring opinions on these issues to this medium, it makes it easier for the author to convey his criticisms of Korea to people with no previous interest in Korea.
- P.26 states Keijō Imperial University, founded in Seoul by Japan in 1924, had about the same number of Japanese and Korean students.[clarification needed] The university had 31% of Korean students in 1926 and 35% in 1941.
- P.53 suggests the economic growth of South Korea was due to Japanese grants ($0.5 billion) based on Treaty on Basic Relations between Japan and the Republic of Korea of 1965. Between 1945 and 1960, the United States provided South Korea 6 times more fund than Japan did in foreign assistance ($3 billion) and continued aid till 1970.
- p. 77 states South Korea only received 1 vote in an election for non-permanent members for United Nations Security Council in 2003 and claims it is an evidence Korea is not trusted by other countries. In fact, South Korea has been already elected as a member for 1996–1997 with over 2/3 of valid ballots. Ban Ki-moon, current Secretary-General of UN is a South Korean.
- p. 163 states the Japanese colonial government published the first Korean dictionary in 1920. In fact, the dictionary was a Korean-Japanese dictionary as entry meanings were in Japanese. The first Korean language dictionary was published by Shim Ui Rin (심의린), a Korean teacher in 1930. After the beginning of World War II, Korean dictionaries were in fact prohibited. In 1942, the government arrested 33 Korean scholars of Korean language for organizing the Joseon Language Society and attempting to publish a Korean language dictionary. 11 scholars were found guilty, and 5 were put to prison. The Japanese Colonial Court found them guilty because "behaviors such as publishing of a Korean language dictionary is a form of nationality movement to maintain the spirit of Joseon."
- P.165 states Korean language education was never banned under Japanese rule, but only became an elective course in 1938 by the “Decree on Education in Joseon”. However, another decree in 1943 completely banned education of Korean language.
- p. 210 states Koreans wanted annexation with Japan, saying Iljinhoe, the biggest political party in Korea at the time argued for annexation. A hardcore pro-Japanese faction, the group had about 90,000 members according to a survey by Resident-General of Korea right before the annexation and was not legitimately or quantitatively representative of Korean population. There had been nation-wide protests and armed resistance by Koreans against the annexation, and March 1st Movement, an anti-Japan protest in 1919 had about 2 million participants.
- p. 211 states An Jung-Geun’s assassination of Ito Hirobumi accelerated Japan–Korea annexation, However, this alternative history argument has been long disputed among historians.
- p. 214 states Japan abolished slavery in colonial Korea. In fact, slavery was officially abolished in 1894 by Korean government.
Contents on 2002 World Cup games
In Chapter 1, the book recounts the conduct of the Korean team in the 2002 World Cup games and claims that refereeing decisions in Korean team's matches against Portugal and Spain were controversial. The book argues that the Korean team had an unfair advantage in certain key matches. On p. 20, a character states that "This subject was the talk of soccer-related internet message boards" (サッカー関係のネット掲示板ではこの話題で持ちきりだぜ).
The book argues that the misjudgment was a decisive factor in the Korean team's record four advancements in the tournament (like Japan, the Korean team had never won a World Cup game before 2002). As the book points out, four referee decisions were included in the 2004 FIFA Fever DVD release in its list of top 10 wrong referee decisions in the history of the World Cup. Although the book states that this DVD release by FIFA was in response to the demands of the “fair judgement movement”, Exposing Manga Kenkanryu's Lies refers to a news article in which FIFA states that it was not they that directed the DVD's content, but another company under license from FIFA. FIFA, the official authority concerning game decisions in World Cup games, has never reversed any decisions in 2002 games or penalized any referees involved in question. The New York Times article by Norimitsu Onishi also states that the reason behind bringing up the 2002 FIFA World Cup was to justify Japan’s lagging behind South Korean soccer by questioning the validity of the South Korean team’s success in an attempt to bring it down to an equal footing with Japan, as well as to combat the growing opinion in Japan that South Korea has emerged as a rival to Japan.
The book also describes the conduct of overzealous Korea supporters, and on p. 20 says, as an Asia Times article points out, that the sun disc on the Japanese flag displayed during the opening ceremony in Seoul was deliberately drawn bigger than the usual size to make the flag look like a used sanitary napkin.
In 2005, a supplementary volume has recently been released entitled The Truth of "Manga – The Hate Korea Wave"! (マンガ嫌韓流の真実!, Manga Kenkanryū no Shinjitsu, ISBN 4-7966-4973-5, published by Takarajima-sha and released 2005-10-21), using evidence to support its claims that the arguments presented in The Hate Korea Wave are based in fact. A book debunking Kenkanryu has recently been released in Japan, however, entitled This Part of "Manga Kenkanryu" is Nonsense – A Serious Rebuttal.
Yamano Sharin published 3 sequels to Manga Kenkanryu, in 2006, 2007, and 2009. The author also released in 2008 a comic book titled "Manga Kenchugokuryu" (マンガ嫌中国流; translated as "Hate China Wave") of which main topic is anti-Chinese opinions in Japan.
While continuing more or less upon the basic setting of its predecessor, Manga Kenkanryu 2 also deals with such issues as far as Zainichi issues, the Sea of Japan naming dispute, and Japan's Protection of Human Rights Bill. It is also not merely a criticism of South Korea but also upon the position of Japanese media reporting, House of Councillors member Tomiko Okazaki's participation in anti-Japanese demonstrations, and the educational position of the Japan Teachers Union. On the article regarding Zainichi issues, the book by name focuses upon South Korea but is centered upon the North Korean-linked Chogin Credit Cooperatives, Zainichi North Korean schools, and the North Korean abduction issue with focus upon Zainichi North Koreans and the North Korean-linked General Association of Korean Residents in Japan, and this aspect of the book's organization has undergone criticism from Japanese netizens for failing to touch upon the subject of Zainichi South Koreans and the South Korean-linked Korean Residents Union in Japan. Another issue the sequel deals with is the media response (including The New York Times') response to the original book.
- Sharin Yamano
- Japan–Korea disputes
- Kyōgaku no Gaijin Hanzai Ura File - Gaijin Hanzai Hakusho 2007 (controversial anti-foreigner Japanese "mook")
- Japanese nationalism
- Ethnic persecution/discrimination
- Takarajima Supplementary Volume The Truth of "Manga – The Hate Korea Wave"! An Ultra-Primer to South Korean/Peninsular Taboos (マンガ嫌韓流の真実!〈韓国/半島タブー〉超入門; Manga Kenkanryū no Shinjitsu! <Kankoku/Hantō Tabū Chōnyūmon>, ISBN 4-7966-4973-5, published by Takarajima-sha, released 2005-10-21)
- Takarajima Supplementary Volume The Truth of "Manga – The Hate Korea Wave"! Outside Scuffles (マンガ嫌韓流の真実!場外乱闘編; Manga Kenkanryū no Shinjitsu! Jōgai Rantō Hen, ISBN 4-7966-5127-6, published by Takarajima-sha, released 2006-01-26) written by Takeshi Nakamiya, continuation volume to the former book
- Shin'yūsha Mook – Kenkanryu Practical Handbook – Anti-Japanese Abusive Language Repulse Manual (嫌韓流 実践ハンドブック 反日妄言撃退マニュアル 晋遊舎ムック; Kenkanryū Jissen Handobukku: Han-Nichi Bōgen Gekitai Manyuaru – Shin'yūsha Mukku, ISBN 4-88380-502-6, published by Shinyusha, released 2005–12) written by Makoto Sakurai, a Japanese blogger also known under the name Doronpa
- The Hate Korea Wave Debate – Refuting the Anti-Japanese Nation, South Korea (嫌韓流ディベート 反日国家・韓国に反駁する; Kenkanryū Dibēto: Han-Nichi Kokka – Kankoku o Hanbaku suru, ISBN 4-89346-936-3, published by Sōgō Hōrei Shuppan, released 2005-12-22) written by Toshiaki Kitaoka and Debate University
- Shinyusha Mook Series – Manga Kenkanryu Official Guidebook (マンガ嫌韓流 公式ガイドブック 晋遊舎ムックシリーズ; Shin'yūsha Mukku Shirīzu – Manga Kenkanryū Kōshiki Gaidobukku, ISBN 4-88380-517-4, published by Shinyusha, released 2006-02-22)
- Manga – An Introduction to China: A Study of Our Bothersome Neighbors (マンガ中国入門 やっかいな隣人の研究; Manga Chūgoku Nyūmon: Yakkai na Rinjin no Kenkyū, ISBN 4-87031-682-X, published by Asuka Shinsha, released 2005-08-06) written by George Akiyama and supervised by Ko Bunyu: A manga written from a standpoint mainly criticizing the People's Republic of China. As its release date was close to that of The Hate Korea Wave, it was observed on 2channel as being "A Chinese edition of Kenkanryu". According to the publisher, 180,000 copies have been printed as of 2005-09-22. This book is also discussed in the aforementioned New York Times article.
- This Part of "Manga Kenkanryu" is Nonsense — A Serious Rebuttal (『マンガ嫌韓流』のここがデタラメ―まじめな反論; "Manga Kenkanryū" no Koko ga Detarame — Majime na Hanron, ISBN 4-86187-023-2, published by Commons, released 2006-05), a collaboration by Osamu Ota, Pak Il, Gang Seong, Jeong Ha-mi, Jeong A-yeong, O Mun-suk, Tomo'o Kasetani, Takeshi Fujinaga, Ban Weol-seong and Go Gil-mi
- Yang, B. (2006). 혐일류 [Anti-Japan wave]. Seoul, Korea: Nara. ISBN 89-92035-01-2
- Kim, S. (2006). 혐일류 [Anti-Japan wave]. Seoul, Korea: Jayuguyeok. ISBN 89-5795-796-0
||This article includes a list of references, but its sources remain unclear because it has insufficient inline citations. (April 2009)|
- Yang, B. (2006). 혐일류 [Anti-japan wave]. Seoul, Korea: Nara. ISBN 89-92035-01-2
- Kim, S. (2006). 혐일류 [Anti-japan wave]. Seoul, Korea: Jayuguyeok. ISBN 89-5795-796-0
-  2010 Ilgan Sports article
-  Doosan Encyclopedia
- An image of a closely related scene is the first picture in the "Reception" section of this article.
- Huh, S. (2005, p.330). 개발 없는 개발 [Development without development]. Seoul, Korea: Ginko. ISBN 89-5660-105-4
-  2007 Donga Ilbo article
-  2010 Busan Ilbo article
-  Doosan Encyclopedia
-  Encyclopaedia Britannica Korea
- Hosaka, Y. (2005, p.146). 일본 고지도에도 독도 없다. [Dokdo is not on Japanese maps]. Seoul, Korea: Jaeumgwa Moeum. ISBN 89-544-0366-2.
-  Doosan Encyclopedia
-  2010 Nocut News article
-  Doosan Encyclopedia
- S. Yamano. (2008). マンガ嫌中国流 [Hate China Wave]. Tokyo, Japan: Shinyusha. ISBN 4-88380-803-3