Anime tourism: discursive construction and reception of the Studio Ghibli Art Museum

Rayna Denison

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


Anime tourism has been an important phenomenon within Japanese culture for the past decade. The signs of this global tourism can be read in the growing number of museums and theme parks in Japan dedicated to the history, and contemporary global success, of anime culture. However, the reputed aims and forms of these entertainment venues varies wildly, with some anime companies choosing to venerate animators, as with the Osamu Tezuka Museums in Kyoto and Takarazuka, while, alternatively, others are adopting theme park aesthetics, as with Sanrio Puroland. A common denominator among these anime venues is, however, an attempt extend the life and value of their products. The article argues that the Studio Ghibli Art Museum is an attempt to rebrand their hit films as ‘art’ products, but that the responses of the museum's international users display a tendency to perform a resistant tourist and consumerist gaze within the museum space. This article is an attempt to delve into the complex relationship between anime producers and global consumers, viewing the museum space as one in which the cultural meanings of anime are put to the test.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)545-563
Number of pages19
JournalJapan Forum
Issue number3-4
Publication statusPublished - 16 Dec 2010


  • anime
  • tourism
  • Studio Ghibli
  • Hayao Miyazaki

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