East Asian Studies
This project looks at the way fans think, talk, and feel about the anime they watch and the manga they read. Specifically, it looks at fans of Sailor Moon, a series of Japanese anime and manga made in the 1990s that have been dubbed and translated into English and have been met with an enthusiastic reception among girls and young women in the United States. Sailor Moon is considered one of the first mass cultural productions to present images of girl power and gender equality and has generated a large and enthusiastic online community of fans. Most of its fans admire the Sailor Scouts; however, some have criticized the series for displaying negative portrayals of teen girls, particularly in terms of their body proportions, attire, and stereotypical portrayals of teenage girls as dependent and naïve. This study examines many aspects of this dissonance, which to a significant degree can be attributed to the drastic changes made from the Japanese manga to its anime adaptation, and then again to its English anime adaptation. Utilizing general principles of feminist and gender theory, I examine the various representations of the Sailor Scouts in terms of their reception by, and impact on, the interpretive community.
Hewlett, Darrah M., "Anime and Identity: The Reception of Sailor Moon by Adolescent American Fans" (2015). East Asian Studies Summer Fellows. Paper 1.