“China Is Masculine Japan Is Feminine” Says Japanese Scholar

Kondo Daisuke, author of "China is Masculine, Japan is Feminine" discusses Japan's relationship with China and Korea.

Originally published in the Chinese newspaper the Yanzhao Metropolis Daily, and then reposted on Yahoo! Japan after appearing in Japanese translation by Xinhua News, this interview with Japanese scholar Kondo Daisuke reviews some of the ideas that Kondo has explored in his research in recent years. It starts with Kondo expounding on his thoughts about what he considers to be “the most dreadful ‘Japanese disease’”, before moving on to the possibility of a China-Japan alliance, why Japanese women dislike “herbivore men”, before finally arriving at his ideas regarding the reasons why many Japanese women want to marry Korean men. Needless to say, many Japanese netizens did not see things from the same perspective as Kondo…

From Yahoo! JAPAN:

“Why Is It That Japanese Women Want To Marry Korean Men?: A Japanese Scholar’s Analysis

Kondo Daisuke, a Japanese scholar who has resided for a long time in Beijing, China, has presented a paper entitled ‘What is Japan lacking? What is China lacking?’ This article was reported in the Yanzhao Metropolis Daily.

While residing in Beijing, Kondo would ride the metro and the trams on a daily basis, positively observing the lifestyles of the common Chinese people. In China, it is the women who choose their partners for marriage.

Below is an extract from the data Kondo collected. Regarding China and Japan’s relationship he said, ‘China is like a man, Japan is like a woman.’ What are considered to be weaknesses in Japan are strengths in China, while the weaknesses perceived in China are seen as strengths in Japan, “It’s a complementary relationship for both countries”, he said.

— If both China and Japan were to join forces, Asia would have no competition.

Journalist: In your book, you identify that “the most dreadful ‘Japanese disease’ is closed-mindedness”, what would you consider to be the most dreadful ‘Chinese disease’?

Kondo: Chinese people need to have more self-confidence. Despite there being large amounts of extremely talented people all over the place, nobody seems to realise it. For example, one of the dishes in the local cuisine of Huzhou in Zhejiang, gantiaomian (a noodle dish), is excellent and delicious, but nobody seems to know it. The buskers on the metro and on the streets are performers of a high calibre. To be honest, insecurity in China itself causes people around the world to often get the wrong impression.

A regional noodle dish from  Huzhou in Zhejiang.

“Gantiaomian”, a regional noodle dish from Huzhou in Zhejiang.

Journalist: Six years ago you released a book entitled, ‘Japan Needs To Ally with China!’ Have any of your thoughts changed since that time? What’s the likelihood of both countries forming an alliance?

Kondo: First of all, what I need to make clear is that China’s might is in no way a threat. If China functions as the centre of Asia, then the other countries in Asia will benefit. Actually, the period of time during which the two countries were at war, when the relationship between the two countries worsened, is actually very short. Rather, the period of time during which Japan benefited from China’s power is much longer. I am not thoughtlessly advocating Japan-China friendly relations. Viewing it from Japan’s viewpoint, it’s being said after taking into consideration that Japan has thoroughly benefited. I haven’t changed the way I feel about that. From both a financial perspective and from a military perspective, China is the number one member of Asia, while Japan is number two. If these two countries were to join forces, Asia would have no competition.

Former Japanese Prime Minister Hatoyama Yukio's visit to a memorial for victims of the Nanking Massacre.

Former Japanese Prime Minister Hatoyama Yukio’s visit to a memorial for victims of the Nanking Massacre.

Journalist: What is the biggest obstacle for construction of an alliance? What would the strategy to solve it be?

Kondo: It would have to be the existence of America. Before the Opium Wars, China was the centre of Asia, but after the war the existence of America’s power and influence could not be ignored. The strategy would be for Japan to quickly have a ‘second Hatoyama Yukio’, and like Hatoyama, implement a diplomatic policy to build relations with China while distancing itself from the U.S.

Journalist: It could be said the generation of Japanese politicians who felt a sense of regret regarding the war have all passed away now, leaving the political ability to implement reconciliation between the two countries to continue becoming weaker as time goes on. What do you think about this?

Kondo: I don’t agree with that view. This is because the sense of values that those born in Japan during the 80s and 90s and those born in China during the 80s and 90s are very similar. They have watched the same animations and they have played the same computer games as they have grown up.

Korean actor <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hyun_Bin" target="_blank">Hyun Bin</a> in the drama "The Snow Queen"</a>

Korean actor Hyun Bin in the drama “The Snow Queen”

Journalist: Regarding the title of your book, ‘China is Masculine, Japan is Feminine’, why is it that you think like that?

Kondo: The position China occupies in the continent has a harsh natural environment and has been frequently open to attacks from foreign enemies. Therefore it’s important for males to be brave. In contrast, Japan is surrounded by the sea, so invasion from foreign forces is difficult. As a result, a feminine and sensitive culture was able to develop. Therefore there are a lot of men in Japan who like China. Then, why is it that Japanese women want to marry Korean ‘ikemen’ [handsome] men? At the time the Kamakura Shogunate came to be in 1192, the traditional notion of the ‘samurai’ was spearheaded for Japan as a military nation. Then after the Meiji Restoration, the ‘samurai’ was superseded by the notion of the ‘gentleman’, which itself was then replaced, following the end of the Second World War, by the ‘corporate warrior’. And then after the collapse of the Bubble Economy, there was the period of ‘the lost decades’, then the Tohoku earthquake, and these ‘corporate warriors’ became ‘herbivore men’. Nevertheless, Japanese women dislike looking after these herbivores, so recently they gaze longingly at the macho ‘ikemen’ in their neighbouring country.

Comments from Ceron.jp:


Well then, I suppose you’d be better off finding a Chinese bride then.


Looks like there’s more than one version of the country we know as Japan in this world…


The sudden change in context at the end. I laughed hard.


This Kondo guy, is he an asshole or just clueless? To talk about the 1192 Kamakura shogunate etc, this guy is definitely an asshole w


Have you ever found a Japanese woman like that? You can say that you have, but they’d be those zainichi gook women with their peninsula blood. Those people aren’t Japanese.


Nevertheless, Japanese women dislike looking after these herbivores, so recently they gaze longingly at the macho ‘ikemen‘ in their neighbouring country.


Ehーwww Oh really~www


These are the misguided women who have been corrupted by the Korean boom. Overall there’s probably not many of them. They’d probably end up fleeing back here after their North Korean husbands beat them up.


He’s talking about one case with a self-satisfied smile…It’s alright to say they like China, but to say that all of them do, well I wonder about that line of argument


This bloody stupid article, the person who wrote it is just out to stir things up w that’s what I think. Whatever the real motive of the article, the bastard who wrote it is a shit.


An extremely unpleasant article without any foundation.


If this Japanese scholar, Kondo Daisuke, were to get married it’d be to a Chinese woman. China is masculine and reliable, while Japan is feminine, and… He was definitely bribed.


I don’t wanna get married to a raping demon.


Really? I mean, the title and the contents don’t particularly match each other.


I laughed so hard at the ‘Korean ikemen’ part w There’s no one around me saying such things (´∇`) /


I only got halfway through this before I had to vomit. Yahoo shouldn’t be fucking putting these worthless articles on the front page, stupid bastards.


Who is this person? I haven’t heard of any women who want to get married to Korean men, but in the worst case scenario where one of my relatives do, we’d all oppose it!


This guy, is he genuinely stupid??


Fabricated report w


Has this scholar himself contracted this ‘Chinese disease’? I’m gonna completely ignore his overestimation of China.

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