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The birthplace of manga in Japan: the true fans

In recent years, manga culture in Japan has become as important as the launch of American comics was in its day. Currently, both share a section in specialized bookstores, large commercial chains and the shelves of millions of homes.

More and more people are reading these comics from Japan, as well as those who are influenced by their peculiar style. In this short article, we want to bring you a little closer to this reading intended for all types of audiences.

the origin of manga

The word manga refers to paintings that combine text and images.. The coinage of this word is attributed to the famous Japanese painter Katsushika Hokusai. This artist, famous for his engravings, especially The Great Wave off Kanagawaattributed to the word manga the meaning of irresponsible drawings, due to the target audience of the beginning of these publications.

manga artist

Nevertheless, It would be after World War II, when the manga definitely took shape. The evolution and influence of journalism and art from Europe and America had an impact on classical authors, who began to be interested in more fanciful stories and drawings.

Unlike Western comics, the manga is created in black and white only. The drawings are filled with a multitude of visual resources such as kinetic lines and sound effects. The mangakaname taken by the artists who are dedicated to creating these works of Japanese comics, try to emphasize the narrative and, above all, the design of the characters.

Among the main contributors to the expansion of the manga stands out Osamu Tezuka. Recognized as one of the fathers of modern manga, he is the creator of works as well known as astro boy Y The Knight Princess. The author acknowledged being influenced by the works of Walt Disney, which caused most of the manga’s protagonists to have large, bright eyes.

Over the years, the adaptation of the manga to the big screen became what is known as anime. Great classics like Heidi, Candy Candy or Mazinger Z were acclaimed by Western audiences, laying the foundations for the influence of manga outside of Japan.

Akihabara, the cradle of manga in Japan

Akihabara neighborhood in Tokyo

In Tokyo is the neighborhood of Akihabara, popularly known as Akiba. Over the years, this neighborhood, once famous for being the center of electronics lovers, has become home to the largest number of shops and services related to manga culture.

In this way, here we can find everything from electronics stores with cameras and computers to specialized manga stores, video games and all kinds of related items, such as costumes and figures. Some of these shops belong to the famous Mandarake chain, dedicated exclusively to manga and anime.

In the Akihabara neighborhood we can also find the Tokyo Anime Centerwhich has many exhibitions related to the world of manga and anime and also offers a store full of merchandise related.

In addition to its stores, Akihabara is also known for the popular maid cafes and its manga kissaten, where you can drink coffee and sweets while reading a manga. It also has large shopping centers with sections dedicated to manga and themed restaurants from well-known anime series.

Manga culture today

Kyoto International Manga Museum

Although in Japan and in other cultures the image of manga has not been completely detached from negative connotations, it is beginning to be seen as better eyes. Avoid compulsorily relating the word manga to adult contentespecially of an erotic nature.

There is manga for all kinds of audiences. A clear example are comics and television series as well known as it was Framework and movies like my neighbor totoro.

Thanks to public acceptance, the manga has become a referential image for the Japanese worldwide. In fact, the country has ambassadors and official mascots from the world of manga, such as Pokémon or the cute Doraemon.

The style of manga has begun to influence great sagas of video games and comics around the world. So much so, that terms such as manhwa Y amerikanga, both referring to the manga of Korean origin and the hybrid between the style of classic American comics with touches of the manga style.

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