Southeast Asia

Organized Panel Session

4 - Indonesian and Japanese Fashion Fusion: A Bridge of Cultural Connection or Cultural Appropriation?

Friday, July 6
2:40 PM - 4:10 PM
Location: Silveroak II, Ground Floor

Over the decades, Japanese cultural influence in Asia has changed dramatically, from actively promoting Japanese culture in the military occupation era, to cautiously avoiding the promotion of Japanese culture in Asian countries in postwar years due to fear of being considered as instilling cultural hegemony, and recently it has changed to supporting and encouraging the expansion of Japanese pop culture and art as national soft power.


Since the 1980s, Japanese culture has been appreciated by more and more people around the world, including Indonesians. One of Japan’s cultural influence in Indonesia is upon local fashion. Indonesia boasts a long tradition of fashion, but recently, Japan’s fashion industry appears to become an important player, able to blend its culture with Indonesian local fashion. The Japan External Trade Organization, in its latest project on the event of Japan Fashion Week 2017, had invited 21 Japanese fashion brands to visit Indonesia and invited Indonesian designers to collaborate and enhance acculturation of both cultures.


My research aims to examine the mutual influence of Japan and Indonesia that led to the practices of fashion fusion to strengthen the cultural connection between both nations. I argue that fashion fusion cannot be interpreted as a form of cultural appropriation, but enhancing diversity in the world of fashion and showing cultural synergy that favors both Japan’s as well as Indonesia’s cultural enrichment.


 

Rizki Hakiki Valentine

Universitas Darma Persada, Indonesia

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