Occidentalism
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Documentary about robots in Japan

August 26th, 2009 . by Matt

This is a pretty interesting documentary about robots. Actually it’s subject matter is fairly eclectic – demographics, immigration, host bars, and of course robots.

One part that was a bit annoying was when they gave a zainichi Korean woman a forum to say that she was being being discriminated against because even though she was a taxpayer like Japanese people, she is not allowed to vote (because she is not a citizen, of course, but she is conflating paying taxes with citizenship). She also said that zainichi Koreans have “no rights at all”. This is total bunk and they left it unchallenged. They also said that zainichi Koreans need to adopt Japanese names to get the same civil rights as Japanese people, which is ridiculous. I don’t know why zainichi Koreans say things to overseas media that they know is easily debunked in Japan (probably because the foreign media is so credulous to claims of Japanese racial discrimination). Anyway, her telling bullshit stories like that is not going to help her with what the narrator calls the “fierce discrimination that makes everyday living a challenge”. I guess this is par for the course when it comes to zainichi Korean issues. After all, most non-Japanese are under the false impression that most zainichi Koreans do not get Japanese citizenship because of Japanese discrimination. The reality is that there is such little institutional discrimination against zainichi Koreans that there is very little incentive for them to take on Japanese citizenship. Many zainichi Koreans have an ethnocentric attachment to their Korean (north or south) citizenship, and refuse to give it up.

If you are not in the US and cannot view the video, follow my instructions here and you will be able to do so.


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