Anime is one of the most important modern cultural facets of Japan. “Anime” comes from the word “Animation” and within Japan it is used to refer to any type of animation, while in the West it refers only to content produced in the land of the rising sun.
Currently there are countless anime titles aimed at all types of audiences, being one of the most important export products for the economy of Japan. The anime has the characteristic of having more realistic plots, full of emotions, drama and, in some cases, exaggeration of the actions carried out by the characters. Common anime tends to present its characters with large, oval eyes, quirky haircuts, and highly humanized bodies.
Anime should not be taken as children’s animation, on the contrary, most of the titles are aimed at a mature audience. There are anime companies that have managed to create content to satisfy both audiences, such as Studio Ghibli, one of the most powerful companies in the world of animation.
The history of anime dates back to 1907 when many Japanese artists were influenced by Western animation and decided to create national content for Japan. At that time it was very difficult because the materials were expensive and the country had suffered various economic crises due to natural disasters and, later, war.
In the 1940s, Japan released the first animated film, sponsored by the same government. When the war ended, through the years, manga (Japanese comics) spread to the population, as a distraction from the reality that the nation faced after the war.
Finally, in the 60’s, Osamu Tezuka created the first modern anime called “Astro boy”, and from then on, many writers and producers followed his example and by the time of the 80’s Japan already had many anime titles for export and, little by little, all the influence of anime spread throughout the world, until today, where anime like “Pokemon” or “Neon Genesis Evangelion” are part of the imagination of a large majority of the world’s population.
Anime fan conventions are held around the world in spaces where experiences are shared, figures, DVDs, cards, collectibles and any material related to this genre of animation are sold.
In Tokyo there are places specialized in anime culture, such as Akihabara and Ikebukuro. Anime has a significant socio-cultural impact on the population of Japan and the international community.