Japanese culture essay

Document Type:Essay

Subject Area:Cultural Studies

Document 1

This essay is of my experience with the Japanese culture which I found to be exciting and an all-around culture. The Japanese culture is as a result of the old century traditions and the continual state of rapid change of lifestyle. Language. The people speak Japanese, and it's their national language as well as the written text. The old Japanese text or "Kanbun", as well as the earliest Japanese text, "Kojiki," originated from China hence the similarity with the ancient Chinese characters. It is easy to differentiate the dressing from other as it is a very unique robe-like type of clothing. The kimono has different shades where the men are expected to wear darker shades and women brighter shades. The kimono also differentiates the marital status in women, the one with patterns that do not go above the waistline are meant for unmarried women while the one with long sleeves are for married women — floral designs of the kimono change according to the seasons; spring, autumn etc.

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It is customary for dressing to match the environment of the particular season. And one obvious distinction from the modern clothing is that it does not come in specific sizes but come as universal approximates where a range of different sizes can fit into one. It is not customary for them to tip the attendant like other cultures; instead, one is required to politely say "gochisosama deshita" which means thank you for the meal. Gifting is mostly part of the culture, and each gift goes with its occasion and gifts in sets of 4 should be avoided as the word four is pronounced the same as death in Japanese. If you receive a simple gift, it is polite also reciprocate the gesture.

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Architecture. The Japanese architecture is unique but similar to the Chinese architecture, the Chinese greatly influenced it, but over time they developed their style that is native to the Japanese culture. Karate is a martial arts sport where opponents use punches, kicks, knee & elbow strikes and open-hand strike techniques to win. Aikido is a martial art that is less aggressive that pivots the defence by redirecting the power and energy of the attacker, where no participant comes in harm's way during the sport. Judo is the most spread Japanese martial arts where the principle lies in quickness, precision and prowess by which you use the size and strength of the opponent against themselves. All these forms of the sport have developed to professional sports and recreational activities all over the world.

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Cuisine. There are two types of Noh; Genzai (realistic) and Mugen (fantasy). United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization designated the art form as an Intangible Cultural Heritage. Most Noh players were men, but in the recent years' women players have also joined, the musical play has performers wearing masks during the performance and a "Waki" who is a stock character, acts both as a performer and musician. Kabuki comes from Noh, is a classical dance drama performed to townspeople and farmers. Kabuki is known for of its drama and the makeup on their performers; called "kensho". According to the faith, when humans die their families should cherish their spirits as ancestral kami. The belief differs with other religions, as it states that no action is entirely wrong or right, and nobody is perfect.

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