Examining the Contemporary Dynamics of Japan–China Interactions in the Cultural and Creative Industries

Conference: AAS-in-Asia2020 (AAS-in-Asia2020)
Title: Examining the Contemporary Dynamics of Japan–China Interactions in the Cultural and Creative Industries
Stream: Sociology
Presentation Type: Roundtable
Panelists:
Ryotaro Mihara, Keio University, Japan (organizer, roundtable-chair)
Yuan Li, China International Children’s Film Festival, China (discussant)
Tatsuo Yoshikawa, Keio University, Japan (discussant)
Juan Cao, Tian Jin Normal University, China (discussant)
Kazuo Yamashita, Keio University, Japan (discussant)

Abstract:

This roundtable explores how we can understand the contemporary transnational interactions of the Japanese and Chinese cultural and creative industries (CCI). The importance of the Asian region in the realm of CCI is rising dramatically, which is a game changer for a field that has long been dominated by Euro-American powerhouses. Japan and China are two of the most prominent regional centres. Japanese popular culture such as anime and manga has long been one of the world’s most popular non-Hollywood forms of CCI, while China, especially its IT media conglomerates, is now becoming an emerging source of creativity and funding for CCIs worldwide. There are, however, only a limited number of studies that cover this sea change, especially the transnational interactions of CCI that take place intra-regionally in Asia. Such relations include: Chinese IT media conglomerates’ heavy investment in Japanese anime projects; rising Japan–China film co-productions against the background of the Film Co-production Agreement signed by the countries’ governments in 2018; and the so-called ‘China shift’ (away from the Euro-American market) taking place in the Japanese film industry, which involves seeking markets in China as well as partnerships with Chinese players. How can we understand such contemporary intra-Asian developments in the field of CCI? What kind of theoretical frameworks can we envision in capturing them and how can such frameworks enhance our understanding of CCI in the world at large? As members of a recently formed international joint research project on the same topic, the participants of this roundtable intend to discuss the above issues with each other as well as with the roundtable’s audience in order to explore preliminary perspectives upon which the project could develop its research further. Mihara chairs/organises the roundtable and provides its overarching viewpoints, and also contributes his expertise on anime (especially on Japan–China international anime co-production projects). The discussants will contribute to the discussion by providing their own expertise on CCI in Asia, including Chinese live-action films (Cao), Chinese film festivals in Japan (Yoshikawa), intra-Asian diffusion of Japanese popular novels (Yamashita), and the internationalisation of Chinese juvenile films in Japan (Li).