This paper takes a sociological approach to the question of popular culture’s ability in Japan--specifically that of Japanese animation--to be reflective of the country's sociological concerns. This is not to say that all anime shows consciously reflect Japanese life, but by extrapolation of recurrent themes one can construct a model of certain sociological issues in Japan. The author split the paper up into five sections each of which tackles a different theme. These sections are: Education, Social and Class Differences, Environment, Post-Nuclear Visions, and An Emergent Feminism. The main point that the author conveys in each section is a way of looking at anime through a cultural lens that will allow the reader to learn more by placing it within a greater context.

First Advisor

Sarah Sloane

Second Advisor

Michael Sugimoto

Date of Completion


Degree Type




Date of Award

Spring 4-16-2001