Placeholder Image

Subtitles section Play video

  • Sometimes I spend my time thinking.

  • Sometimes I do it while jogging.

  • Thinking.

  • Jogging.

  • Thinking.

  • Jogging.

  • Drinking.

  • Recently I've been thinking a lot about this.

  • What makes a Japanese person Japanese?

  • Is it the blood that runs through their veins?

  • A parent they were born to?

  • The country they grew up in?

  • Is it how they look?

  • How they act?

  • How they speak?

  • By law, what makes a Japanese person Japanese is their citizenship.

  • So, in a sense, it's that simple.

  • I shouldn't be thinking so much about this.

  • But in reality, it just doesn't seem that easy.

  • Like most people think Japan is this homogeneous country.

  • Even some former Japanese Prime Ministers.

  • "One nation, one civilization, one language,

  • one culture and one race,

  • the like of which there is no other on this earth"

  • Taro Aso

  • This really hasn't been true in the past

  • when Ieyasu Tokugawa united the country in 1603,

  • putting it on the path to close its doors 3 decades later.

  • It wasn't during the Meiji restoration

  • when the Emperor was reinstated in 1868

  • and the doors reopened.

  • It wasn't after world war 2

  • when in 1946 Douglas MacArthur and staff drafted the new Japanese constitution.

  • It isn't today as the immigrant population, while small, continues to grow.

  • There are so many people from all over the world

  • that have shaped who the Japanese are today.

  • From the indigenous Ryukyuans in the south and Ainu in the north.

  • To the Koreans who came from across the sea.

  • To the Chinese who make up the biggest percentage of immigrants.

  • To the Vietnamese who are now Japan's number one source of new technical intern trainees,

  • kind of a mouthful, I know.

  • There are the Japanese who left for Brazil generations ago,

  • to return to Japan in the 1990s as the economic miracle was bursting.

  • There are second generation American Japanese,

  • some who find success in their new country,

  • others who return home and find it.

  • "You are always going to be my love." You are always going to be my love

  • There are the children of two nationalities, like my kids,

  • who are both Japanese and Canadian simultaneously.

  • And then there are those with no official ties to Japan

  • yet want nothing more than to be called Japanese.

  • Now don't get me wrong, Japan is a very homogeneous country,

  • but if you look beneath the surface, I think you'll find a diversity of people and ideas.

  • A lot of Japanese food, items, and culture are remixes of others.

  • It started with rice, continued with cars, and is present in so many Japanese things.

  • On the other hand, as much as Japan is made up of, and inspired by, other cultures,

  • it's also uniquely its own.

  • I'm creating a documentary trying to answer the question of what it is to be Japanese,

  • and what the future of Japan might be like.

  • This is a journey that will take me around Japan,

  • and, maybe a bit about the world as well.

  • If this is something you'd like to see,

  • I'd love your support:

  • whether it's your time, your story, your language skills,

  • or hey, even your money.

  • Just head on over to Indiegogo to learn more.

  • Thanks to all of you, all over the world.

  • Peace.

Sometimes I spend my time thinking.

Subtitles and vocabulary

Operation of videos Adjust the video here to display the subtitles

B1 US japanese jogging homogeneous thinking country world

Being Japanese

  • 74 6
    ayami posted on 2019/11/11
Video vocabulary