Skip to main content

The Gizmo effect: “Japan Inc.”, American nightmares, and the fissure of the symbolic

Buy Article:

$18.00 plus tax (Refund Policy)

This article analyses the phenomenon of 'Japan-bashing' as it emerged in late twentieth-century horror fiction and film. Specifically, the article argues that depictions of 'Japan Inc.' as an object of anxiety shifted from fear of the Other (via a familiar Orientalist discourse) to a fear of the Same. Placing Joe Dante's Gremlins (1984) in direct conversation with Roland Barthes' Empire of Signs (English translation, 1982) and Karel van Wolferen's (in)famous Enigma of Japanese Power (1990), the article seeks to interrogate broadly the dread of an American transition into a 'New World Order'; in short, with the gradual loss of a demonized Soviet Union, capitalism was left with nothing to haunt but itself (artificially posited in 'Japan'). Cultural 'Others' in the horror genre were thus radically challenged as the genre moved into the twenty-first century.
No Reference information available - sign in for access.
No Citation information available - sign in for access.
No Supplementary Data.
No Article Media
No Metrics


Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2011-06-01

More about this publication?
  • Horror Studies intends to serve the international academic community in the humanities and specifically those scholars interested in horror. Exclusively examining horror, this journal will provide interested professionals with an opportunity to read outstanding scholarship from a variety of disciplinary perspectives, including work conceived as interdisciplinary. By expanding the conversation to include specialists concerned with diverse historical periods, varied geography, and a wide variety of expressive media, this journal will inform and stimulate anyone interested in a wider and deeper understanding of horror
  • Editorial Board
  • Information for Authors
  • Subscribe to this Title
  • Ingenta Connect is not responsible for the content or availability of external websites
  • Access Key
  • Free content
  • Partial Free content
  • New content
  • Open access content
  • Partial Open access content
  • Subscribed content
  • Partial Subscribed content
  • Free trial content
Cookie Policy
Cookie Policy
Ingenta Connect website makes use of cookies so as to keep track of data that you have filled in. I am Happy with this Find out more