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Gender and Authenticity in Japanese Popular Music: 1980–2000

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This article examines the role of visual presentation in the work of two Japanese bands, Shonen Knife and Puffy, with particular reference to issues of gender and authenticity both in their self‐representations as well as in perceptions of these bands in Japan and the United States. The authors contrast the ways in which the women of Shonen Knife are perceived, based on their punk vision, to the ways in which the women of Puffy are characterized, based on their grounding in J‐pop. Yet, they conclude that both bands subvert traditional notions of gender in Japan as well as transnational criteria of pop and punk authenticity, through their manipulations of the visual aspect of their band's identities. Further, this aspect of authenticity in Japanese women's pop music is missed because it is viewed as feminine, and is correspondingly devalued.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: 2006-02-01

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