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Japanese cartoons called anime or manga continue to gain popularity. Watching, reading, and creating anime or manga is a growing hobby with Americans of all ages.
Amine or manga works are found in book, film, video and online formats. It is easy to identify their trademark artistic style with its stark colorful graphics and characters with large child-like eyes.
Less quickly discovered is the genre’s use of thought-provoking themes, often related to the relationship of man and technology. Drawing on Japan’s Shinto and Zen traditions and flavored with strong martial arts, these cartoons offer both an exciting adventure and a peak into another culture.
Those just discovering the anime and manga art form may find the words new or confusing. It is interesting to distinguish between anime and manga.
Manga is the Japanese word for comics. Books and magazines of this form are examples of manga. It is easy to identify manga—it opens from back to front and the reader starts the story from the top right corner.
Manga can be further broken down into types according to their specific audiences. There is a manga story for everyone.
Anime is the distinctive style of animation used by the Japanese, often to animate manga titles. Films, videos, or animated clips on websites of this form are examples of anime.
While many Americans may not know either the word anime or manga, they are likely to be familiar with the name of some popular characters and programs.
Pop culture, art form, entertainment, or commentary? Fans would answer that manga and anime are all of these plus lots more.
Article by: St. Louis Public Library staff