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February 2010
Wed, Sep. 20th, 2006 07:34 am
Mukokuseki diasporans


NOT Greta Garbo
Wed, Sep. 20th, 2006 09:17 am (UTC)
thinking about this in the context as an immigrant

But it's not enough for we diasporans to be confident, bold and narcissistic, or to bring sunshine into a grey, racially monolithic world with our mukokuseki children. We need an audience, darling, and they must not only be dull, but see themselves as dull before they'll shut up and pay attention to us, or smile back at our gurgling, gurning trans-national babies.

But still, I wonder if Tokyo is so closed in the artistic job market as Sweden can be, there is a protectiveness to the art world here... even if you have a degree from an internationally acclaimed art school, and there ARE in fact jobs (as in the UK) within "ART" however there is a catch, in spite of the so called "left-leaning" the art world here lays claim to, there is a certain threat being foreign has, so much so that one must work in the "area" for 3 years inside of the country before one can become part of the "protected job market".. a kind of "catch 22" situation, as you need access to what their closed market offers in order to really get a job, other wise, there is a dishwashing job available there..and you never get into the art market after 3 years of dishwashing.

Foreign-ness in any place which finds the appeal of "those others" exciting, often has a back lash, somewhere, because it is about being "too interesting" and even a threat.. I understand that when I go to a party, and people find out where I come from.

It gets that way just taking my son to school, as he is bilingual and very "different", perhaps he would be this way even if he wasn't multi-national, or lacking of nationallity. I wouldn't think it was based upon any difference of features, characteristics since physically, we don't really "stand out", as a foreign person in Japan would.

We speak the language, we do all the "Swedish" things, but we are still neither here, nor there. And this can not be blamed upon any sort of right/left thing happening here at the moment... as most immigrants were very supportive of the "socialist" right, party. (all are socialists, and will never be more than various shades of that, which suits me fine as they are nothing like Thatcher or Reagan or Bush)which is probably how they got elected in the first place after being so disapointed by the system in place.

I in fact see in other areas that Sweden embraces the foreign and this is why they close their job market to me (and others)... still struggling to find a way in, via the other methods, but starting your own buisness just to extend your employment opportunties is not an option at this time.

Maybe the whole problem with the back lash in the Tokyo thing is just that very same thing, just the difference is exciting and people are questioning themselves "why should it be that way?" and often it is about finding self confidence and excitement in one's own culture.. but often this is at the exclusion of other's culture.

Yesterday's paper had a comic strip in it focusing on the letter "X", and said "X" is for "Xenophobe" in Swedish.. it was just an illustation of how small and frightning the world is when you see everyone who is not like you as a threat.

Is the appeal of the foreign who leave their country for another more of a particpant observer showing a country what is so wonderful about themselves, or is it really about the difference, like monkeys in the zoo, "look how they are like us, but yet so different"-difference?

There are more than 1,000,000 immigrants in Sweden at this time so I assume that the market, although only 12%, for the most part, when it comes to jobs, is still that of a threat. Even outside of the art world.. and people have mentioned that they do feel discriminated against... in spite of our very open policies, anti-discrimination laws and other things in place.

I can't assume that Japan has such rules - nor as many immigrants.

Wed, Sep. 20th, 2006 09:29 am (UTC)
Re: thinking about this in the context as an immigrant

I think the shift in attitudes to immigration, globalisation and so on over the last five years has been very tragic, and I don't know what could reverse it. Of course, in the 90s people were shouting that it was a fig-leaf for imperialism, but now they'd be happy to see that "soft power" again, rather than today's terrorism, paranoia and closing down of options.

ReplyThread Parent
Wed, Sep. 20th, 2006 10:05 am (UTC)
Re: thinking about this in the context as an immigrant

Well, everyone connected with art in Liverpool seems to be a foreigner, so maybe you're looking in the wrong places for jobs.

ReplyThread Parent
NOT Greta Garbo
Wed, Sep. 20th, 2006 11:09 am (UTC)
well sure if I lived in the UK

it would actually work, in fact I have family that moved from Hamilton, Scotland to Liverpool.

But don't you get it? That's exactly why its harder, a protected job market within Sweden when it comes to areas of Culture. The KAF (Kulturarbetsförmildingen) web site I am not allowed to be a part of has a huge data base which promotes visual artists of all kinds and has enough memory to upload video, and all out of my access! But yet I understand, they have to protect the market from the "exotic" influence such as myself.. as we are far too strange and interesting..

ReplyThread Parent