Japanese Ethnocentrism and Globalisation
Japan has frequently been portrayed as a uniquely homogenous society both racially and ethnically.
Before the end of WWII Japanese leadership inculcated in the populace myth of Japanese racial purity.
In post-war years many have explained Japans economic success and stability to its racial and ethnic homogeneity.
Racism and ethnocentrism still remain strong in the society.
Analysts of the social psychology of the Japanese suggest that the inferiority complex towards the West and superiority complex towards Asian neighbors have played a major role in Japanese perceptions of other nationalities.
At the top of the national hierarchy, politicians have often expressed their honne and referred to the superiority of the Japanese race, a race uncontained by other racial and ethnic groups.
In 1986 the Japanese Prime Minister claimed the Japanese had a higher level of intelligence than Americans.
Numerous racist statements by Japanese ministers.
Japanese society is more than ever exposed to the international community.
Contemporary Japan is stuck between the contradictory forces of narrow ethnocentrism and open internationalism.
Deconstructing the Japanese
Fact is that Japan has a variety of minority issues, ethnic and otherwise.
Four main minority groups: Ainu, burakumin, Koreans, and foreign workers.
The Ainu situation derives from the Honshu race’s attempt at internal colonisation of Japans northern areas since the sixth century.
The buraku issue stems from the caste system in the feudal period.
The Korean issues originated from Japans external aggression into the Korean peninsula in the first half of the twentieth century.
The foreign workers influx began with Japans economic performance in the 1980´s and 90´s.
Nationality, ethnic lineage, place of birth current residence, subject identity, and level of cultural literacy.