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{JAPAN AND THE WORLD}

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{JAPAN AND THE WORLD}

Post by Akisame Era on Sun Jan 26, 2014 9:33 pm

Feudal Japan

SHOGUN

Okay, forget everything you think you know about the bakufu/shogunate in Japanese history. On MDA, we're using this term to refer to the rulers of each island (which isn't too far-fetched honestly). There are four. Under them are various Daimyo, and then under them are various samurai/ninja/soldiers/etc.

DAIMYO

(大名 daimyou) were the powerful territorial lords in pre-modern Japan who ruled most of the country from their vast, hereditary land holdings. In the term, "dai" (大) literally means "large", and "myou" stands for myouden (名田), meaning private land.

Daimyo were the most powerful feudal rulers from the 10th century to the middle 19th century in Japan. From the shugo of the Muromachi period through the Sengoku to the daimyo of the Edo period, the rank had a long and varied history.

The term "daimyo" is also sometimes used to refer to the leading figures of such clans, also called "lord". It was usually, though not exclusively, from these warlords that a shogun arose or a regent was chosen. Daimyo often hired samurai to guard their land and they paid the samurai in land or food. Relatively few daimyo could afford to pay samurai in money.

In regards to MDA, Daimyo are those who work under the Shogun of each island of Japan, protecting their own sector of land (much like they did for the actual/singular Shogun in Japan post-Meiji Era). See the Plot for more details.

SAMURAI

usually referred to in Japanese as bushi (武士 or buke 武家), were the military nobility of medieval and early-modern Japan. According to translator William Scott Wilson: "In Chinese, the character 侍 was originally a verb meaning to wait upon or accompany persons in the upper ranks of society, and this is also true of the original term in Japanese, saburau. In both countries the terms were nominalized to mean "those who serve in close attendance to the nobility," the pronunciation in Japanese changing to saburai. According to Wilson, an early reference to the word "samurai" appears in the Kokin Wakashuu (905–914), the first imperial anthology of poems, completed in the first part of the 10th century.

By the end of the 12th century, samurai became almost entirely synonymous with bushi, and the word was closely associated with the middle and upper echelons of the warrior class. The samurai followed a set of rules that came to be known as bushidou. While the samurai numbered less than 10% of Japan's population, their teachings can still be found today in both everyday life and in modern Japanese martial arts.

Most samurai were bound by a code of honor and were expected to set an example for those below them. A notable part of their code is seppuku (切腹 seppuku) or hara kiri, which allowed a disgraced samurai to regain his honor by passing into death, where samurai were still beholden to social rules. Whilst there are many romanticized characterizations of samurai behavior such as the writing of Bushido (武士道 Bushidou) in 1905, studies of Kobudo and traditional Budou indicate that the samurai were as practical on the battlefield as were any other warrior.

Despite the rampant romanticism of the 20th century, samurai could be disloyal and treacherous (e.g., Akechi Mitsuhide), cowardly, brave, or overly loyal (e.g., Kusunoki Masashige). Samurai were usually loyal to their immediate superiors, who in turn allied themselves with higher lords. These loyalties to the higher lords often shifted; for example, the high lords allied under Toyotomi Hideyoshi (豊臣秀吉) were served by loyal samurai, but the feudal lords under them could shift their support to Tokugawa, taking their samurai with them. There were, however, also notable instances where samurai would be disloyal to their lord or daimyo, when loyalty to the emperor was seen to have supremacy.

For more information look here. If you don't know anything about samurai, I suggest you watch The Last Samurai and read up some on Bushido.


EMPEROR

For now on MDA, there is an emperor, however, he isn't ruling. Leave him in the shadows.

NINJA

Speaking of shadows... A ninja (忍者) or shinobi (忍び) was a covert agent or mercenary in feudal Japan. The functions of the ninja included espionage, sabotage, infiltration, and assassination, and open combat in certain situations. Their covert methods of waging war contrasted the ninja with the samurai, who observed strict rules about honor and combat. The shinobi proper, a specially trained group of spies and mercenaries, appeared in the Sengoku or "warring states" period, in the 15th century, but antecedents may have existed in the 14th century, and possibly even in the 12th century (Heian or early Kamakura era).

For more information look here.


Last edited by Akisame Azusa on Tue Aug 05, 2014 12:58 am; edited 9 times in total

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Re: {JAPAN AND THE WORLD}

Post by Akisame Era on Tue Jan 28, 2014 2:20 am

Clothing

I don't expect you to know all this; it is just for personal use and accuracy.

Most Japanese people still dress traditionally; however, upcoming and younger generations have acquired taste for western clothing too.

WOMEN'S KIMONO

Literally, kimono means “a thing to wear,” and though the acceptable English plural of the word is kimonos, typically in Japanese the plural of the word is still kimono. There are multiple styles for both men and women, and the style worn depends on the formality of the occasion.
Spoiler:


  • Furisode
    (振袖): Furisode literally translates as swinging sleeves—the sleeves of furisode average between 39 and 42 inches (110 cm) in length. Furisode are the most formal kimono for unmarried women, with colorful patterns that cover the entire garment. They are usually worn at coming-of-age ceremonies (seijin shiki) and by unmarried female relatives of the bride at weddings and wedding receptions.
  • Houmongi
    (訪問着): literally translates as visiting wear. Characterized by patterns that flow over the shoulders, seams and sleeves, houmongi rank slightly higher than their close relative, the tsukesage. Houmongi may be worn by both married and unmarried women; often friends of the bride will wear houmongi at weddings (except relatives) and receptions. They may also be worn to formal parties.
    Pongee Houmongi were made to promote kimono after WWII. Since Pongee Houmongi are made from Pongee, they are considered casual wear.
  • Iromuji
    (色無地): single-colored kimono that may be worn by married and unmarried women. They are mainly worn to tea ceremonies. The dyed silk may be figured (rinzu, similar to jacquard), but has no differently colored patterns.
  • Komon
    (小紋): "fine pattern". Kimono with a small, repeated pattern throughout the garment. This style is more casual and may be worn around town, or dressed up with a formal obi for a restaurant. Both married and unmarried women may wear komon.
  • Edo Komon
    (江戸小紋): is a type of komon characterized by tiny dots arranged in dense patterns that form larger designs. The Edo komon dyeing technique originated with the samurai class during the Edo period. A kimono with this type of pattern is of the same formality as an iromuji, and when decorated with kamon, may be worn as visiting wear (equivalent to a tsukesage or houmongi).
  • Mofuku
    Mofuku is formal mourning dress for men or women. Both men and women wear kimono of plain black silk with five kamon over white undergarments and white tabi. For women, the obi and all accessories are also black. Men wear a subdued obi and black and white or black and gray striped hakama with black or white zori.
    The completely black mourning ensemble is usually reserved for family and others who are close to the deceased.
  • Tomesode Irotomesode
    (色留袖): single-color kimono, patterned only below the waistline. Irotomesode with five family crests are the same as formal as kurotomesode, and are worn by married and unmarried women, usually close relatives of the bride and groom at weddings and a medal ceremony at the royal court. An irotomesode may have three or one kamon = family crests. Those use as a semi-formal kimono at a party and conferment.
  • Kurotomesode
    (黒留袖): a black kimono patterned only below the waistline, kurotomesode are the most formal kimono for married women. They are often worn by the mothers of the bride and groom at weddings. Kurotomesode usually have five kamon printed on the sleeves, chest and back of the kimono.
  • Tsugesage
    (付け下げ): has more modest patterns that cover a smaller area—mainly below the waist—than the more formal houmongi. They may also be worn by married women. The differences from houmongi is the size of the pattern, seam connection, and not same clothes at inside and outside at "hakke." As demitoilet, not used in important occasion, but light patterned houmongi is more highly rated than classic patterned tsukesage. General tsukesage is often used for parties, not ceremonies.
  • Uchikake
    (打掛): a highly formal kimono worn only by a bride or at a stage performance. The Uchikake is often heavily brocaded and is supposed to be worn outside the actual kimono and obi, as a sort of coat. One therefore never ties the obi around the uchikake. It is supposed to trail along the floor, this is also why it is heavily padded along the hem. The uchikake of the bridal costume is either white or very colorful often with red as the base color.
  • Susokiki/Hikizuri
    Susohiki literally means "trail the skirt". Where a normal kimono for women is normally 1.5–1.6 m (4.7–5.2 ft) long, a susohiki can be up to 2 m (6.3 ft) long. This is also why geisha and maiko lift their kimono skirt when walking outside, also to show their beautiful under kimono or "nagajuban"


MEN'S KIMONO

In contrast to women's kimono, men's kimono outfits are far simpler, typically consisting of five pieces, not including footwear. Men's kimono sleeves are attached to the body of the kimono with no more than a few inches unattached at the bottom, unlike the women's style of very deep sleeves mostly unattached from the body of the kimono. Men's sleeves are less deep than women's kimono sleeves to accommodate the obi around the waist beneath them, whereas on a woman's kimono, the long, unattached bottom of the sleeve can hang over the obi without getting in the way.

In the modern era, the principal distinctions between men's kimono are in the fabric. The typical men's kimono is a subdued, dark color; black, dark blues, greens, and browns are common. Fabrics are usually matte. Some have a subtle pattern, and textured fabrics are common in more casual kimono. More casual kimono may be made in slightly brighter colors, such as lighter purples, greens and blues. Sumo wrestlers have occasionally been known to wear quite bright colors such as fuchsia.
The most formal style of kimono is plain black silk with five kamon on the chest, shoulders and back. Slightly less formal is the three-kamon kimono.


ACCESSORIES AND RELATED GARMENTS

Spoiler:

  • Datejime/Datemaki
    (伊達締め)/(伊達巻き): A wide under sash used to tie the nagajuban and the outer kimono and hold them in place.
  • Eri-sugata
    (衿姿): A detached collar that can be worn instead of a nagajuban in summer, when it can be too hot to comfortably wear a nagajuban. It replaces the nagajuban collar in supporting the kimono's collar.
  • Fundoshi
    (褌): The traditional Japanese undergarment (loin cloth) for adult males, made from a length of cotton.
  • Hakama
    (袴): A divided (umanoribakama) or undivided skirt (andonbakama) which resembles a wide pair of trousers, traditionally worn by men but contemporarily also by women in less formal situations. A hakama typically is pleated and fastened by ribbons, tied around the waist over the obi. Men's hakama also have a koshi ita, which is a stiff or padded part in the lower back of the wearer. Hakama are worn in several budo arts such as aikido, kendo, iaidō and naginata. Hakama are often worn by women at college graduation ceremonies, and by Miko on shinto shrines. Depending on the pattern and material, hakama can range from very formal to visiting wear.
  • Hanten
    (袢纏): The worker's version of the more formal haori. Often padded for warmth, as opposed to the somewhat lighter happi.
  • Haori
    (羽織): A hip- or thigh-length kimono-like jacket, which adds formality to an outfit. Haori were originally worn only by men, until it became a fashion for women in the Meiji period. They are now worn by both men and women. Men's haori are typically shorter than women's.
  • Haori-himo
    (羽織紐): A tasseled, woven string fastener for haori. The most formal color is white.
  • Happi
    (法被): A type of haori traditionally worn by shop keepers and is now associated mostly with festivals.
  • Hiyoku
    (ひよく): A type of under-kimono, historically worn by women beneath the kimono. Today they are only worn on formal occasions such as weddings and other important social events. High class kimonos may have extra layers of lining to emulate the appearance of hiyoku worn beneath.
  • Juban/Hadajuban
    (襦袢)/(肌襦袢): A thin garment similar to an undershirt. It is worn under the nagajuban.
  • Nagajuban
    (長襦袢): A kimono-shaped robe worn by both men and women beneath the main outer garment. Since silk kimono are delicate and difficult to clean, the nagajuban helps to keep the outer kimono clean by preventing contact with the wearer's skin. Only the collar edge of the nagajuban shows from beneath the outer kimono. Many nagajuban have removable collars, to allow them to be changed to match the outer garment, and to be easily washed without washing the entire garment. While the most formal type of nagajuban are white, they are often as beautifully ornate and patterned as the outer kimono. Since men's kimono are usually fairly subdued in pattern and color, the nagajuban allows for discreetly wearing very striking designs and colors.
  • Kanzashi
    (簪): Hair ornaments worn by women. Many different styles exist, including silk flowers, wooden combs, and jade hairpins.
  • Kimono Slip
    (着物スリップ kimono surippu): The susoyoke and hadajuban combined into a one-piece garment.
  • Koshihimo
    (腰紐): A narrow sash used to aid in dressing up, often made of silk or wool. They are used to hold virtually anything in place during the process of dressing up, and can be used in many ways depending on what is worn. Some of the karihimos are removed after datejime or obi have been tied, while others remain worn beneath the layers of the dress. The karihimo that is worn around the hips to create the extra fold or ohashori in women's kimono is called koshihimo, literally "hip ribbon".
  • Netsuke
    (根付, 根付け): An ornament worn suspended from the men's obi.
  • Obi
    (帯): The sash worn with kimono.
  • Obi-age
    (帯揚げ): The scarf-like sash which is knotted and tied above the obi and tucked into the top of the obi. Worn with the more formal varieties of kimono.
  • Samue
    (作務衣): The everyday clothes for a male Zen Buddhist monk, and the favored garment for shakuhachi players.
  • Susoyoke
    (裾除け): A thin half-slip-like piece of underwear worn by women under the nagajuban.
  • Tabi
    (足袋): Ankle-high, divided-toe socks usually worn with zouri or geta. There also exist sturdier, boot-like jikatabi, which are used for example to fieldwork.
  • Geta
    (下駄): Wooden sandals worn by men and women with yukata. One unique style is worn solely by geisha.
  • Zouri
    (草履): Traditional sandals worn by both men and women, similar in design to flip-flops. Their formality ranges from strictly informal to fully formal. They are made of many materials, including cloth, leather, vinyl and woven grass, and can be highly decorated or very simple.
  • Waraji
    (草鞋): Straw rope sandals which are mostly worn by monks.
  • Yukata
    (浴衣): An unlined kimono-like garment for summer use, usually made of cotton, linen, or hemp. Yukata are strictly informal, most often worn to outdoor festivals, by men and women of all ages. They are also worn at onsen (hot spring) resorts, where they are often provided for the guests in the resort's own pattern.
  • Layering
    In modern-day Japan the meanings of the layering of kimono and hiyoku are usually forgotten. Only maiko and geisha now use this layering technique for dances and subtle erotic suggestion, usually emphasising the back of the neck. Modern Japanese brides may also wear a traditional Shinto bridal kimono which is worn with a hiyoku. Traditionally kimonos were worn with hiyoku or floating linings. Hiyoku can be a second kimono worn beneath the first and give the traditional layered look to the kimono. Often in modern kimonos the hiyoku is simply the name for the double-sided lower half of the kimono which may be exposed to other eyes depending on how the kimono is worn. Old-fashioned kimono styles meant that hiyoku were entire under-kimono, however modern day layers are usually only partial, to give the impression of layering.

FOREIGN CLOTHING

Anything and everything is allowed at this point. Keep it simple.


Last edited by Akisame Azusa on Tue Aug 05, 2014 12:26 am; edited 4 times in total

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Re: {JAPAN AND THE WORLD}

Post by Akisame Era on Tue Jan 28, 2014 2:42 am

Food

I don't expect you to know all this; it is just for personal use and accuracy.



JAPANESE FOOD

Japanese foods are not very common abroad.

Every culture and country has delicious food! Japan has a wide variety of food and regional specialties. Generally, Japanese cuisine is based on combining the staple food of rice with one or several side dishes and sometimes a soup as well, and each course item served in its own small plate or bowl to keep them from touching. Even meals at home are served this way, allowing each food to retain its individual flavor (in contrast to Western dishes that are all served on the same plate, and Chinese dishes where putting foods on top of rice is standard).

The seasonality of ingredients plays a key role in local dishes, and vegetarian dishes make up a large number of the dishes on each island. Given that it’s an island nation, fish is often the main source of animal protein, and it is said that the cultural diet has always relied on grains with vegetables or seaweed as the main, fowl meat as secondary, and mammal meat in slight amounts. Cattle and livestock take a lot of room to herd and raise, making them less common, and slightly taboo to eat under Buddhist practice.


This is a list of some of the common dishes and regional specialties. There are many, many more, and this is just for reference material. However, if you want other dishes to use, please use this link, this link, or this link.

  • Gohan: (rice) Just plain cooked white rice
  • Mochi: a rice cake
  • Ochazuke: hot green tea or dashi (fish broth) poured over white rice and served with savory ingredients.
  • Onigiri: rice balls with a filling in the middle
  • Tomago kake gohan: Rice with a raw egg
  • Okayuu: rice porridge that’s fed to infants and sick people since it’s easy to digest and keep down (similar to Chinese jook or congee)
  • Donburi: a big bowl of rice topped with savory things, such as seasoned beef (Gyuudon), tuna sashimi (Tekkadon), or eel with vegetables (unadon).
  • Sushi: Vinegared rice topped topped or mixed with various fresh ingredients, often vegetables and seafood. Nigiri-zushi refers to the ingredients being on top of a block of rice; maki-zushi encases ingredients inside the rice and is rolled into a cylinder and wrapped with seaweed; inanri-zushi are small pockets of tofu skin with rice stuffed inside and fried.


Noodles are also a popular staple in dishes, and are handmade. Noodle dishes you’d find at shops most commonly would be soba (buckwheat noodles), udon (thick white wheat noodles served hot), and somen (thin white wheat noodles served cold with a dipping sauce).

Other common main dishes might include:

  • Tempura: batter-fried vegetables and seafood
  • Tonkatsu: breaded and fried pork chop
  • Agedashi dofu: cubes of deep-fried silken tofu
  • Gyoza: potsticker dumplings filled with pork and vegetables
  • Okonomiyaki: a savory pancake with meat and vegetable ingredients
  • Takoyaki: a batter dumpling with octopus inside
  • Shabu-Shabu: a hot pot dish made with beef, veggies, and tofu cooked at the table
  • Kakuni: Chunks of pork belly stewed with daikon and whole eggs
  • Nikujaga: beef and potato stew
  • Sashimi: Raw, thinly-sliced foods served with dipping sauces; usually shellfish and fish.
  • Miso soup: soup made with tofu, seaweed, and dashi broth
  • Dangojiru: soup made with dumplings, seaweed, lotus root, and other veggies.



Regional Specialties:

Hokkaido
Spoiler:


  • Ishikari nabe: A dish of salmon pieces stewed in miso broth with veggies
  • Chanchan-yaki: a specialty of fishing villages, this is miso-grilled salmon with veggies
  • Ruibe: thin-sliced raw salmon served frozen and eaten like sashimi


Honshu - Tohoku Region
Spoiler:


  • Harako-meshi: rice cooked in salmon and soy stock and topped with ikura (salmon caviar)
  • Gyutan: Grilled beef tongue


Honshu - Chubu & Kanto Regions
Spoiler:


  • Houtou: udon noodles stewed in miso soup with vegetables such as pumpkin, potatoes, or mushrooms.
  • Sushi: A specialty of the Edo Bay area



Honshu - Kansai & Chugoku Regions
Spoiler:


  • Yudofu: tofu simmered in hot water with kombu
  • Kitsune udon: hot udon with sweet aburaage
  • Dotenabe: a dish of oysters, tofu, and veggies stewed in a miso-based broth


Shikoku
Spoiler:


  • Sanuki udon: Udon specially made in the Sanuki Province
  • Katsuo no tataki: finely chopped skipjack tuna and spring onions seasoned with rice vinegar
  • Sudachi: a tiny lime-like citrus that is often grated and added to fish dishes


Kyushu
Spoiler:


  • Mizutaki: dish of chicken and veggies cooked in broth and served with dipping sauce
  • Mentaiko: spicy fish eggs
  • Chicken Namban: battered and fried chicken dipped in a vinegary sauce
  • Toriten: tempura chicken served with a soy sauce based sauce



FOREIGN FOODS

Foreign foods are acceptable in Japan; imported, but acceptable. If you don't have access to imports, you don't have access to imports. I don't really care about the foreign foods being historically accurate either. And honestly, we won't really be too much of a stickler over it. With that, KFC and McDonald's is really popular in Japan.


Last edited by Akisame Azusa on Tue Aug 05, 2014 12:41 am; edited 6 times in total

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Re: {JAPAN AND THE WORLD}

Post by Akisame Era on Tue Jan 28, 2014 2:47 am

Atmosphere

SHRINES

Unlike temples, Shrines cater to Shintoism rather than Buddhism, however it should be noted that Shinto isn't so much a defined "unified religion" as much as keeping to the beliefs tied heavily to folklore, history, and mythology. A Shinto Shrine is a structure whose main purpose is to house one or more Shinto kami, and its most important building is to house sacred objects, not for worship.

Shrines vary in size, from mini shrines (hokora) found near roads and portable shrines (mikoshi), to quite large buildings. A Shinto shrine is usually characterized by the presence of a sanctuary (honden), where the kami is enshrined. The honden may however be completely absent, as for example when the shrine stands on a sacred mountain to which it is dedicated, and which is worshiped directly. The honden may be missing also when there are nearby altar-like structures called himorogi or objects believed capable of attracting spirits called yorishiro that can serve as a direct bond to a kami. There may be a haiden (hall of worship) and other structures as well. There are an estimated 100,000 Shrines throughout Japan.

TEMPLES

Buddhist temples exist side by side with Shinto Shrines, and share the same architecture as well as the Shinto Torii gates at many temples. Roumon, a Buddhist gate, can also be found at both Shrines and Temples alike. And like shrines, the most important building is used for the safekeeping of sacred objects and isn't accessible to worshippers. A temple is also a monastary. There are specialized buildings for certain rites, but these are usually open only to a limited number of participants. Religious mass gatherings do not take place with regularity as with Christian religions, and are in any event not held inside the temple. If many people are involved in a ceremony, it will assume a festive character and will be held outdoors.

The clear separation between Buddhist temples and Shinto shrines, which today is the norm, emerges only as a result of the shinbutsu bunri ("separation of kami and Buddhas") law of 1868. This separation was mandated by law, and many shrine-temples were forced to become just shrines, among them famous ones like Usa Hachiman-gu and Tsurugaoka Hachiman-gu.

Because mixing the two religions was now forbidden, jinguji had to give away some of their properties or dismantle some of their buildings, thus damaging the integrity of their cultural heritage and decreasing the historical and economic value of their properties. For example, Tsurugaoka Hachiman-gu's giant Nio (the two wooden wardens usually found at the sides of a temple's entrance), being objects of Buddhist worship and therefore illegal where they were, were sold to Jufuku-ji, where they still are. The shrine-temple also had to destroy Buddhism-related buildings, for example its tahoto, its mido, and its shichido garan.

TORI GATE

A torii (lit. bird abode) is a traditional Japanese gate most commonly found at the entrance of or within a Shinto shrine, where it symbolically marks the transition from the profane to the sacred. The presence of a torii at the entrance is usually the simplest way to identify Shinto shrines. They are however a common sight at Japanese Buddhist temples too, where they stand at the entrance of the temple's own shrine, called chinjusha (tutelary god shrine) and are usually very small.

Torii are most commonly made of wood or stone, and their function is to mark the entrance to a sacred space. For this reason, the road leading to a Shinto shrine (sando) is almost always straddled by one or more torii, which are therefore the easiest way to distinguish a shrine from a Buddhist temple.

STORES

Spoiler:

  • Konbini: Convenient stores, or otherwise commonly known as konbini are stores that house snacks, ice cream, magazines, ATM machines, and various other things one might need. They are found throughout Japan on pretty much every block. In the world of AOA, we have no inclination to say otherwise, except that perhaps their construction may appear different than the typical concrete cut out konbini. Instead, it probably will look like a typical house, but with aisles and a little glow sign out front.
  • Public Bath Houses: Sento is a type of Japanese communal bath house where customers pay for entrance. Traditionally these bath houses have been quite utilitarian, with one large room separating the sexes by a tall barrier, and on both sides, usually a minimum of lined up faucets and a single large bath for the already washed bathers to sit in among others. Another type of Japanese public bath is onsen, which uses hot water from a natural hot spring. They are not exclusive: A sento can be called an onsen if it derives its bath water from naturally heated hot springs. A legal definition exists that can classify a public bathing facility as sento.

    The Japanese public bath is one area where the uninitiated can upset regular customers by not following correct bathing etiquette designed to respect others. In particular; not washing before bathing, introducing soap into the bath water and horseplay. Sento commonly display a poster describing bathing etiquette and procedures in Japanese or occasionally in other languages for international customers. Some bath houses reserve the right to refuse tattooed customers as a means of helping keep Yakuza members out.
  • Tea Houses: In Japanese tradition a tea house ordinarily refers to a private structure designed for holding Japanese tea ceremonies. This structure and specifically the room in it where the tea ceremony takes place is called chashitsu (literally "tea room"). The architectural space called chashitsu was created for aesthetic and intellectual fulfillment.

    In Japan during the Edo period, the term "tea house" could also refer to a place of entertainment with geisha or as a place where couples seeking privacy could go. In this case the establishment was referred to as an ochaya, which literally meant "tea house". However, these establishments only served tea incidentally, and were instead dedicated to geisha entertainment or to providing discreet rooms for visitors. This usage is now archaic. Contemporary Japanese go to modern tearooms called kissaten on main streets to drink black or green tea as well as (newly introduced!) coffee.
  • Red Light Districts: A red-light district is a part of an urban area where there is a concentration of prostitution and sex-oriented businesses, such as sex shops, strip clubs, adult theaters, etc. The term originates from the red lights that were used as signs of brothels. In Japan, there are 10 districts: Akasen, in Tokyo; Juso in  Yodogawa-ku in north central Osaka; Kabukicho in Shinjuku, Tokyo; Nakasu in Fukoka; Shimbara, Kyoto; Shinmachi, Osaka; Susukino in Chuo-ku, Sapporo, Hokkaido; Tobita Shinchi in Nishinari-ku, Osaka; Yoshiwara in Tokyo; and  Yuukaku in Tokyo.

Most stores are family owned on MDA. Other than those listed above, I'd say there's pet stores, big food stores, tech shops where they fix things or make things, clothing stores, etc. Really, anything you can find now you can probably find there.  

HOUSES

Spoiler:

  • Tatami: A tatami is a type of mat used as a flooring material in traditional Japanese-style rooms. Traditionally made of rice straw to form the core, with a covering of woven soft rush (igusa) straw. Tatami are made in standard sizes, with the length exactly twice the width, an aspect ratio of 2:1. Usually, on the long sides, they have edging (heri) of brocade or plain cloth, although some tatami have no edging.
  • Screens: In traditional Japanese architecture, a shoji is a sliding door, window or room divider consisting of translucent paper over a frame of wood which holds together a lattice of wood or bamboo.
  • Veranda: Engawa refers to the typically wooden strip of flooring immediately before windows and storm shutters inside traditional Japanese rooms. Recently this term has also come to mean the veranda outside of the room as well, which was traditionally referred to as a nure'en.


Last edited by Akisame Azusa on Tue Aug 05, 2014 12:44 am; edited 4 times in total

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Re: {JAPAN AND THE WORLD}

Post by Akisame Era on Fri Mar 07, 2014 11:34 am

Technology

Not everyone is trusting of technology as of yet.

Please just assume that all new technology is invented by the foreigners not at all by the Japanese; they are learning still. Sure, small things can be invented if you're playing a Japanese tech genius, but don't go over the top. Keep it simple; keep it now (that should be a new catch phrase)! Technology was all conjured ABROAD (save for Tera chips), and that is why foreigners from all over want to come and sell their awesome shit.

Have a question about what is available? PM me. Basically, picture old Japan but with new Japan's technology. And yes they are readily available in stores.

THE COMMONLY ASKED

  • Roads for cars: Okay, so there's like a couple hundred paved roads total per island (save for Shikoku; they have none). There's not much. It's hard to get around via car, and you have to jump through hoops to get places, but there isn't much traffic, so you can go in STYLE. BD Cars are EXPENSIVEEE.
  • Planes: Not in Japan. There's no airports. You have to travel by boat.
  • Helicopters: Not in Japan.
  • Space ships: I'll think about it. Right now, just stay away from that topic.
  • Cellphones: Yes.
  • Microwaves and the like: Obv.
  • Skyscrapers: There are a few, but only in major cities, and none in Shikoku.
  • Computers: Yes.

Suggestions? Help.


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Re: {JAPAN AND THE WORLD}

Post by Akisame Era on Sat Mar 08, 2014 9:23 pm

The Rest of the World

Okay, we all need to know what's going on in other countries in order to coherently conceive foreigner characters. Unfortunately, I'm currently too lazy to write up info pages for you here on every country in the world. Let's keep it short.

Note: Shikoku has it's ports closed to foreigners.

The rest of the world is 2015 status. Do your research. Look out your window. You got to Japan via boat cause planes can't fly there. Yes, you can bring your car.

At present in the world, very few civilizations remain "untouched" by the modern world. To the outside world, Japan is the largest of these and considered an anthropological dream, and the chance to explore and discover is worth the risks to the world's scientific communities. Except for Shikoku, it's entirely possible to find various researchers from the world over as they struggle to exchange ideas and information and report their findings in a timely fashion. An even greater struggle is the conflict of interest between helping the country "catch up" with the world at large and the need to preserve it. There's money to be made in both, and yet, the moral and ethical dilemma remains with scientists constantly underfoot  in the tug-of-war between sudden change and resistance to that change.

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