Furusato and Emotional Pilgrimage Ge Ge Ge no Kitaro and Sakaiminato
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PublisherNANZAN INST RELIGION CULTURE
CitationGreene, Barbara. “Furusato and Emotional Pilgrimage: Ge Ge Ge No Kitarō and Sakaiminato.” Japanese Journal of Religious Studies, vol. 43, no. 2, 2016, pp. 333–356.
Rights© 2016 Nanzan Institute for Religion and Culture
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AbstractThe town of Sakaiminato, on the western coast of Japan, has revitalized its local economy through the transformation of the downtown into a tourist destination for fans of the popular manga creator Shigeru Mizuki. The strategy used by the local community closely replicates the traditional pilgrimage patterns established in Japan; however, the focus has been shifted from a religious to secular world view. While the iconography and meaning has changed, the emotional resonance has remained the same, with fans of the series developing a shared sense of community and a connection to some trans-societal force. This attempt to link older religious practices with modern fan cultures has been further strengthened by directly tying tourism with new releases of Mizuki's work.
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