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KEMONO: The History of Japanese Anthropomorphic Culture

Many in the furry community are inspired by Japan. Discover the newest cre - ators and history of Japanese anthropomorphism: Kemono. Feudal Japan hadfurry anthro fans, too. In fact, Japan has a long and rich history with animalsand humans being of li

Imuhata 8ri

on 5 July 2013

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Transcript of KEMONO: The History of Japanese Anthropomorphic Culture

Table of Contents
Prehistory (~794 AD)

Heian Period (794~1193AD)

Muromachi Period (1336~1573 AD)

Edo Period (1603~1868 AD)

Modern Era (1868 AD~Present)
Prehistory (~712 AD)
Kojiki (712 AD)
Shinto and Animism
Animals and Deities of Nature
: the native religion of Japan, primarily a system of nature and ancestor worship.
: the belief that natural objects, natural phenomena, and the universe itself possess souls.
The oldest extant chronicle in Japan.
Anthropomorphic figures give an appearance
Piety against the Nature
Appearance of
Animal as a messenger of deity
Animals as a benefit
(Princess Toyotama)
Toyotama-Hime is a mother of Emperor Jimmu, the first Emperor of Japan. Hoori, the husband of her, was told not to see her when she is giving the birth. Hoori, however, broke the promise and saw her giving birth in a coop.

Toyotama-Hime, now turn herself into Yahiro-Wani (interpretation varies: dragon, shark, gator, or sea snake), was shocked and swam into the ocean soon after she gave a birth.
Omononushi is a god from Mt.Miwa who married with Momoso-Hime. Omononushi visited Momoso-Hime every night, but never let her see himself. Momoso asked Omononushi to reveal himself, and Omononushi approve with one condition: "do not be afraid of his true identity."

Next morning, Momoso found a tiny snake in her makeup box and be shocked. Omononushi transform himself him into human figure, and went back to Mt.Miwa with disappointment.
Yamato Takeru
Yamato Takeru is a legendary prince who is traditionally counted as the 12th Emperor of Japan.

Keikō, the father, sent Yamato Takeru to lands whose people disobeyed the imperial court. With a help of magic sword of Ame-no-Murakumo and his wisdom, Yamato Takeru journeyed across the Nation.
On his return he blasphemed a local god of Mount Ibuki, who give an appearance of a gigantic white boar. The god cursed him with a shower of ice and disease, and he fell ill.
After his death, he transform himself into white bird and flew away to heaven.
Heian Period (794~1193 AD)
The Repercussion of Buddhism Influence
Arrival of Buddhism to Japan
Nihon Ryoiki (822 AD?)
Chōjū-jinbutsu-giga (12th~13th Century)
Buddhism has introduced to Japan in 538 AD.
The concept of a cycle of Reincarnation and Animal Realm were dispersed.
Influence of Chinese culture
Transportation system is not well-developed
Japan's oldest collection of Buddhist "Setsuwa."
Many anthropomorphic animals make an appearance.
"Animal-person Caricatures"
Many Anthropomorphic animals including rabbit, monkey, frog, etc. appeal.
Muromachi Period (1336~1573 AD)
The Generalization of Anthropomorphism
Literature become popular for everyone.
Progress of urbanization
Story of deers, boars, and monkeys decreased.
Story of mice, foxes, and tanuki increased.
A group of approximately 350 Japanese prose narratives with illustrations.
Become popular among common people.
Sarugaku: Noh and Kyōgen
, literally "monkey fun," is a form of theatre which become popular during this era.
Sarugaku spread into two aspects now commonly known as Noh and Kyōgen
Animism and Anthropomorphism
Buddhism in Japanese History
Nihon Ryoiki
Sarugaku: Noh and Kyogen
Edo Period (1603~1868AD)
Popularization of Anthropomorphism
Innovation on mass media
Maturation of "mitate" expression
Rate of information throughput rapidly accelerated.
Publication system has been modernized.
Demand of popular culture increased.
, Figure of speech; to see something to resemble others
A way of expression which gives freshness and element of surprise, and thus it gives people intriguing experience.
The edict of Animal Protection Laws
Gothic novel become prevalent
Rearing of a companion animal become a trend.
Increment of stray animals.
Starting from 1687, Tunayoshi Tokugawa, the fifth Shogun of Edo, enacted a collection edicts known as "Edicts on Compassion for Living Things."
Novels and illustrations related with Yokai and Bakemono made huge success.
Modern Era (1868 AD~Present)
Western influences and globalization
Propagation of Western culture
Implementation of Western culture
Rejection of existing culture
Invention of new medias
Nishiki-e shimbun:
Ukiyo-e which mainly emphasized on news report.
comics created in Japan, or by Japanese creators in the Japanese language, conforming to a style developed in Japan in the late 19th century.
Anime first arose at the start of the 20th century, when Japanese filmmakers experimented with the animation techniques also pioneered in France, Germany, the United States, and Russia.
Nansō Satomi Hakkenden
Anthropomorphic characters in Kojiki
the doctrine of rebirth held that any human could be reborn as an animal, and any animal could be reborn as a human. An animal might be a reborn dead relative, and anybody who looked far enough back through his or her infinite series of lives would eventually perceive every animal to be a distant relative.
Buddhism has had a major influence on the culture and development of Japan over the centuries, and remains an important part of the culture.
"Love fills me completely
After a moment of reunion.
Alas! She is gone."
Story of kitsune
In this story, a fox in human form marries a man, and soon she gives birth to a child. But ultimately her true identity is discovered, and she must depart...

However, the man stops his wife and says, "Since a child was born between us, I cannot forget you. Please come always and sleep with me." Thus, the fox often visited her husband and met. She had remembered his words and stayed at night with him.
"On a Contest Between Women of Extraordinary Strength"
(Volume 1 Chapter 2)

a fox
Written by Kyōkai between 787 and 824, it is Japan's oldest collection of Buddhist setsuwa.
is a genre of Japanese literature which consists of myths, legends, folktales, and anecdotes.
The story of kitsune, a fox, transforms to woman. (Vol. I Chap. 2)
The story of a bull which unholy man reincarnated. (Vol. II Chap. 32)
The story of a snake molest woman and be killed. (Vol. II Chap. 41)
A set of four picture scrolls, or emakimono, belonging to Kōzan-ji temple in Kyoto, Japan.
Commonly-known as "oldest-manga"
Each animals are depicted with role and characteristic.
The epic novel written by Kyokutei Bakin with total volumes of 106.
Lit. "The Eight Dog Chronicles of Nanso
In the beginning of the story, Yatufusa, the giant dog marry with Fushihime.
Become popular during Kamakura, Muromachi, and Edo Periods.
Story are set with many illustrations; which made possible to make it common to everyone including children.
Variety of protagonists appear including nobles, worriers, and even animals.
Sarugaku, lit. "monkey-fun," was introduced from China during 7th century. It mainly involved with acrobatics, juggling, and mime.

During Kamakura Period, Sarugaku become more ceremonial, and interacted with shrine and temple.
A choreograph that often express supernatural power and human destiny
Many characters are masked, with men playing male and female roles.
Subtle and Profound
Depict human destiny with symbolism
Noh masks portray female or nonhuman (divine, demonic, or animal) characters.
(Nue: A legendary creature found in Japanese folklore. It is described as having the head of a monkey, the body of a raccoon dog, the legs of a tiger, and a snake as a tail.)
(Shishi:Imperial guardian lion)
A duologue that mainly express human nature in comical touch.
Involved with acrobatics, juggling, and mime.
Consists with comedies, blunders, and humors
Many animals make an appearance including a racoons, cats, foxes, and monkeys.
In front of Narutaki Hachiman Shrine, a female lord captures a monkey who wanders into the shrine and asks the monkey trainer to sell her the monkey so that she can use its skin to make a leather quiver. At first, the monkey trainer refuses, but when the lord places an arrow in her bow to kill the monkey, the monkey trainer is left no choice and reluctantly agrees to part with his monkey. The monkey trainer begins to sing a last farewell song and the monkey, not even knowing that his death draws near, begins to dance to the song, pretending to row a boat. The female lord is deeply moved by this performance and decides to spare the monkey's life, bringing a happy ending to this dance.
The last surviving fox is desperate to persuade the Trapper to give up his trade. At sundown the Fox calls on the Trapper, disguised as his uncle, the priest Hakuzôsu, whose advice he invariably follows. The Fox tells the Trapper of the danger he is courting, for the fox is a vengeful beast, and its spirit will attach itself to the object of its hate and consume it. He relates several stories, events that took place in far away China and well as in Japan to illustrate his point, and the Trapper promises to give up his trade.

The Fox is triumphant and is on his way when he comes face to face with the snare that the Trapper used to use. He cannot resist the bait and finally convinces himself that he must destroy the bait by eating it. The Fox leaves and the Trapper arrives to look at the snare he had discarded partially set and sees it has been tampered with; he resets the snare and hides. The Fox reappears no longer in disguise. He goes for the bait and is trapped. The Trapper moves in for the kill but the Fox slips out and makes his escape
Development of publication and cultures
Development of printing technology (xylography)
"Kashi-hon," book and magazine rental business appeared and made literature opened to everyone.
Diversification of culture
Ukiyo-e, ( Japanese: “pictures of the floating world”) one of the most important genres of art of the Tokugawa period (1603–1867) in Japan. The style is a mixture of the realistic narrative of the emaki (“picture scrolls”) produced in the Kamakura period and the mature decorative style of the Momoyama and Tokugawa periods. The ukiyo-e style also has about it something of both native and foreign realism.
Bunraku, Japanese traditional puppet theatre in which half-lifesize dolls act out a chanted dramatic narrative, called jōruri, to the accompaniment of a small samisen (three-stringed Japanese lute). The term Bunraku derives from the name of a troupe organized by puppet master Uemura Bunrakuken in the early 19th century; the term for puppetry is ayatsuri and puppetry theatre is more accurately rendered ayatsuri jōruri.
Kabuki, traditional Japanese popular drama with singing and dancing performed in a highly stylized manner. A rich blend of music, dance, mime, and spectacular staging and costuming, it has been a major theatrical form in Japan for almost four centuries. The term kabuki originally suggested the unorthodox and shocking character of this art form. In modern Japanese, the word is written with three characters: ka, signifying “song”; bu, “dance”; and ki, “skill.”
(Ningyō jōruri )
Ukiyo-e Artists
Kawanabe Kyosai (1831 ~ 1889)
The edict of Animal Protection Laws (1687)
Born in the Year of the Dog, Tsunayoshi was influenced by a Buddhist monk who told him he had been a dog in his previous existence.

As a result, Tsunayoshi decreed the death penalty for anyone who harmed a dog, insisted that dogs be addressed only in honorific terms, and kept an estimated 50,000 of them at government expense, feeding them on a choice diet of rice and dried fish.
8,600,000 sq. ft.
(800,000 m2)
Map of Dog garden in Nakano
Kago, the transportation for dogs.
Prohibition of killing or harming animals including dogs, cats, mice, birds, fish, and even mosquitoes.
Prohibition of selling and buying of a bird and fish.
Obligation of burying dead animals.
Leaving someone or animal who have injure or sickness.
Abandonment of both animal and human
Laws includes...
Gothic novel become prevalent
Hyakki Yagyō
Konkai-Zoshi Emaki
(Ikkei Ukita: 1858)
Utagawa Hiroshige
(1797 - 1858)
Utagawa Kuniyoshi (1798 - 1861)
Igyou Kamo Matsuri Zukan
A concept in Japanese folklore
"Night Parade of One Hundred Demons"
(ghost, phantom, strange apparition) are a class of supernatural monsters in Japanese folklore.
Often they possess animal features (such as the Kappa, which is similar to a turtle, or the Tengu which has wings), other times they can appear mostly human, some look like inanimate objects and others have no discernible shape.
Nishiki-e Shimbun
In the Meiji period, various nishiki-e shimbun illustrated new fashions, imported goods, events, the railroad, and other new topics.
Print designers created nishiki-e on topics picked up from the newspapers such as Tōkyō Nichinichi Shinbun or Yūbin Hōchi Shinbun.
Kohata Gitsune
Invention of Manga
The illustration with dialogues later called "manga" was invented during late 19th century.
anthropomorphic figures are often used as a motif of a character even today.
Norakuro by Suiho Tagawa (1931)
Osamu Tezuka
(1928 ~ 1989)
The father of manga
Created over 700 manga with more than 150,000 pages.
Jungle Taitei (1965)
W3 (1965)
Bagi, the Monster of Mighty Nature (1984)
Animation were adopted to Japanese culture during beginning of 1920's to 1930's.
Many anthropomorphic character appeal in a story mainly targeting child.
And it continue to be one of the largest industries in Japan even today.
Japanese Baseball Animation (1931)
(The Bat, 1930)
Appearance of "Kemono" culture
Launching of a book-fair event made less difficult to create and publish fan-fiction
Invention of the Internet made easy to make a social networking community
During mid-90's, online community mainly focus on interest in an anthropomorphic character were formed and call themselves "kemoner."
We are the "terminal" of the history.
Thank you for watching!
Presented by: Hachiri Imuhata
Director: Tachbana Calamansie
Encyclopedia Britannica
Shinbo Satoru, On the characteristics of Shugendo in mountain worship
"Kamimoto-Chakushoku Kumano Kanshin Jukkai Mandara"
Kyoko Motomuchi Nakamura, Miraculous Stories from the Japanese Buddhist Tradition: The Nihon Ryoiki of the Monk Kyokai
What is Noh and Kyogen? <http://www2.ntj.jac.go.jp/unesco/noh/jp/nohgaku.html>
Richard N. McKinnon, Selected Plays of Kyogen
MyNavi news, March 4, 2009
"Meet Bunraku," Sankei Photo news January 1, 2012
Teiri Nakamura, "Animals in Japanese"
Hideo Kuroda, "Sugata to Shigusa no Chuusei shi"
Shogakukan Koten Bungaku Zenshu, "Otogisoshi"
Satoru Sakakibara, "How to watch picture stroll"
Satoru Sakakibara, "Bessatsu Taiyo: Yokai Emaki"
Takeshi Nagasawa, "Mono to Ningen no Bunka-shi Doubutsu Minzoku 1"
Manabu Tsukamoto, "Shorui wo meguru Seiji"
Shoutaro Ashida, "Doubutsu Shinko Jiten"
Shoutaro Ashida, "Sasayama-Bon: Nezumi Soushi"
Gouichi Yumoto, "Meiji Yokai Shimbun"
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