Jisho: Arts, Entertainments & Games

Amezaiku The Japanese art of sculpting taffy. See Wikipedia.

Amigurumi The Japanese art of knitting or crocheting stuffed animals and such. See Wikipedia or Everything2.

AMV See anime music video.

Anime See anime & manga page.

Anime Music Video Videos made by combining music with clips from various anime. AMVs are usually made by fans. See Anime Music Videos .Org, TV Tropes, Wikipedia, or Everything2.

Bijutsu The fine arts (painting, drawing, pottery, etc.)

Bonsai Tray gardening. Bonsai is the art of growing and pruning miniature trees, and not, as I always thought, the name of the trees themselves. See Wikipedia or Everything2.

Bunraku Japanese puppet theater. See Japan Zone, Web Japan, Wikipedia, or Everything2.

Chaturanga The first version of chess, which originated in India. See Chess Variants, Wikipedia, or Everything2.

Dance Dance Revolution, or DDR, is a music arcade/video game in which players have to... perform a series of steps on a dance pad, to the beat of a song that's playing and arrows that flash on a screen... I guess. I don't really know much about it, but it's very popular, in Japan and around the world. Not even sure if it has a Japanese name, though it seems to be part of a series of such games called Bemani (or Beatmania) and was created by Japanese video game company Konami. See Wikipedia, TV Tropes, or Everything2.

Domo-kun A small brown monster from a series of Japanese stop-motion shorts. See Domo-kun FAQ, Wikipedia, or Everything2.

Doujinshi See anime & manga page.

Enka Japanese musical genre often compared to country music. See Wikipedia or Everything2.

Eroge Short for "erochikku geemu," or "erotic game." Refers to video or computer games with erotic content. See Wikipedia or TV Tropes.

Gekiga "Dramatic pictures." Sort of more serious comics than manga, like saying "graphic novels" instead of "comic books." See Wikipedia or TV Tropes.

Go See: Weiqi. This game is the subject of the anime Hikaru no Go.

Haiku A form of Japanese poetry with 3 lines usually consisting of 5, 7, and 5 morae, which are sort of like syllables, but not really. Haiku also traditionally refer to seasons, but they don't have to. I suppose most non-Japanese poetry doesn't necessarily get haiku quite right, then, but... not being a poet, or a linguist, or anything like that... it's probably beyond my ability or understanding or... interest, really. I like haiku well enough just counting syllables, myself. But if you're interested in learning more about proper haiku, by all means, see Wikipedia or Everything2.

Hanafuda "Flower cards." A type of Japanese playing cards, which come in a deck of 48. A number of different games, such as Koi-koi, can be played with hanafuda. See Hanafuda.com, Hanafuda Flash, Wikipedia or Everything2.

Hanryu Korean Wave. Refers to the influx of Korean culture (TV, movies, K-pop, manhwa) into Japan. Though of course Korean wave pop culture has become popular throughout Asia, as well as other countries (including the U.S.) See Wikipedia.

Ikebana The art of flower arrangement. See Wikipedia or Everything2.

Irezumi Tattoo, or the art of tattooing. See Wikipedia or Everything2.

Janken Rock, paper, scissors. See Jan Ken Pon, Wikipedia, or Everything2.

J-horror Japanese horror fiction (books and films, etc.) See Wikipedia.

Jing ju Also called Peking opera or Beijing opera is... well... I guess a sort of amalgamated form of Chinese opera dating back hundreds of years. I don't know much about it, I'm afraid. See China Guide, Peking Opera, Wikipedia, TV Tropes, or Everything2.

J-pop is a type of Japanese music which is often, but not exclusively, heard in anime. See Jpop Central, Wikipedia, TV Tropes, or Everything2.

J-rock is like J-pop, except... rock. Actually, you can just tack a "J" on the front of pretty much any musical genre. J-techno, J-rap, J-dance, etc. But Jpop and Jrock seem to be the most common. See Wikipedia or Everything2.

Kabuki A traditional Japanese form of theater. See Japan Guide, Wikipedia, or Everything2.

Kaidan Ghost stories. The pre-modern pronunciation would be "kwaidan," which is the title of a film (Amazon; IMDb; Wikipedia; Everything2) consisting of four stories, which I'd like to see sometime.

Kaiju Big Battel actually started in Boston, I believe. I don't know much about it, but apparently people dress up in weird costumes, mostly the kind of monsters you'd find in Japanese monster movies, and wrestle. See the official site, Wikipedia, or Everything2.

Kakurenbo Japanese name for the game "hide and seek." There's also an anime short film by this title.

Kawaii noir An artistic style which mixes "cute" and "dark." May be seen in comics, on t-shirts, post cards, etc. The style is popular among followers of the Gosurori (Gothic Lolita) trend (see clothing page, under "fashion trends"). One artist well known for kawaii noir is Junko Mizuno (see people page).

Kemari A kind of Japanese football sport, based on the ancient Chinese sport of Cuju. It was introduced to Japan around the year A.D. 600. Kemari has been mentioned in various animes, including a couple of filler episodes of Bleach at the end of season 10. See Wikipedia or Everything2.

Khoomii (or Hoomei, etc.) Mongolian "throat singing," pretty hard to describe, but also pretty cool, if you like that kinda thing. I haven't heard much of it, but what I have I generally like. See Wikipedia or Everything2.

Kingyo-sukui Goldfish dipping, a popular game at Japanese summer festivals. At a kingyo sukui stall, people try to catch goldfish from a tank using paper scoops. See Wikipedia.

Koi-Koi A popular Japanese card game played with hanafuda. The game constitutes an important plot point in the anime movie Summer Wars. See Wikipedia.

Kosupure Cosplay, dressing in costumes to play characters from anime or video games. I guess it's done at conventions or whatever. I don't really know anything about it and I'm not even sure how I feel about it. Could be cool or it could be stupid. I suppose it depends on how good a recreation the costume is, and how good the players look. See Cosplay.com, Wikipedia, TV Tropes, or Everything2.

K-pop Korean pop music. See Wikipedia.

Light novel See raito noberu (lower this page).

Majiang (aka Mahjong, etc.) A Chinese game played with tiles. I'm afraid I don't really know anything about it, though I'd like to learn someday. See Kejimajiangmi's Home Pages, Wikipedia, TV Tropes, or Everything2.

Manga See anime & manga page.

Manhwa Korean comics and cartoons, similar to Japanese manga and anime. See Wikipedia or TV Tropes.

Mushiking: King of the Beetles An arcade/trading card game in which players win barcoded trading cards, allowing them to make customized beetles to battle with in arcades. Mostly popular with boys, but there's a similar game for girls called Oshare Majo. See the official website or Wikipedia.

Noh A traditional form of Japanese theater, famous for its use of masks. See Japan Zone, Wikipedia, or Everything2.

Oekaki "Scribble" or "doodle." On the internet oekaki refers to a message board for computer art, often fan art based on anime. See Wikipedia or Everything2.

Origami is the Japanese art of paper folding. See paperfolding.com, Wikipedia, or Everything2.

Oshare kei A subset of visual kei, but with brighter, happier fashion, colors, and music than is common to the usually darker visual kei style...

Oshare Majo: Love and Berry Fashionable Witch: Love and Berry. An arcade/trading card game for young girls, similar to Mushiking. Players can win barcoded cards with different outfits, hairstyles, etc., to dress up their arcade characters. See the official website or Wikipedia.

Pachinko is an extremely popular form of gambling which is a cross between pinball and a slot machine. See Japan Zone, Wikipedia, or Everything2.

Raito Noberu (or ranobe for short) Light novel. Short novels typically aimed at junior high and high school students. Many light novels are adapted into manga or anime. See Wikipedia or TV Tropes.

Sentai means "corps," but is also used to refer to Japanese live-action shows about a young task force that battles some evil group. Power Rangers would be an example of the genre. Sentai is a subset of the tokusatsu genre. See Wikipedia, TV Tropes, or Everything2.

Shibori Includes various methods of dyeing cloth, something like tie-dye but more complex. It may include pressing, twisting, folding, stitching, etc. See Wikipedia.

Shogi means "general's game." It is a Japanese variant of chess, which evolved from Chaturanga, the original version of chess, from India. See Chess Variants, Wikipedia, TV Tropes, or Everything2.

Sudoku A kind of puzzle, in which numbers or (sometimes) letters are placed in a 9x9 grid with nine 3x3 subgrids. Each letter or number can appear only once in each row, column, and subgrid. See Wikipedia or Everything2.

Suikawari Watermelon splitting. A game Japanese people play at the beach. Kind of like a cross between a piņata and, um, Gallagher, I guess... See Everything2.

Sumi-e Ink and wash painting, a style of painting similar to calligraphy, but with pictures rather than letters. See Wikipedia or Everything2.

Tamagotchi See stuff page.

Tokusatsu means "special effects," but is also used to refer to Japanese live-action sci-fi/fantasy shows. See Wikipedia, TV Tropes, or Everything2.

UFO Catcher A claw machine for trying to catch prizes of various sorts, usually plushes (especially super-deformed anime characters). I guess it may also refer to the prizes themselves. Of course, we have these things all over the place in America, but they're also quite popular in Japan. See Wikipedia or Everything2.

Ukiyo-e "Pictures of the floating world." A genre of woodblock prints which originated in Japan's Edo period (see history page). See Wikipedia or Everything2.

Visual Kei "Visual type," a genre of J-Rock in which bands wear dramatic costumes, makeup, and imagery. See Wikipedia, TV Tropes, or Everything2.

Weiqi Ancient Chinese board game played with white and black stones. In Korea it is called Baduk, and in Japan it is Igo from which comes the English name for it, Go. See The American Go Association, GoBase.org, Sensei's Library, Wikipedia, TV Tropes, or Everything2.

Wuxia Pronounced "wa-shaw." I first heard this word in a Geico commercial that made it sound like this was some kind of ancient martial arts text. But in looking it up on Google, it seems it's more a genre of Chinese martial arts fiction (literature or films), which can also be used in RPG's. I suspect some anime could be referred to as "wuxia," as well. ...A footnote I read more recently in a magazine blurb about House of Flying Daggers defined it thusly: "This Chinese genre, established in the 1950s, only arrived in Hollywood with Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. The movies' heroes have powers that let them float in the air or scale walls. Star Wars and The Matrix borrow heavily from it." While I like this explanation, I think it may be a bit over-generalized. I think wuxia stories need not necessarily always involve such powers.... See An Introduction to the Wuxia Genre, Wikipedia, TV Tropes, or Everything2.

Xiangqi means "elephant game." It is a Chinese variant of chess, which evolved from Chaturanga, the original version of chess, from India. See Chess Variants, Wikipedia, TV Tropes, or Everything2.

Xi You Ji (or Hsi Yu Chi) Journey to the West. A famous Chinese novel by Wu Cheng'en, published in 1592. The story has been adapted many times over the years, in China, Japan, and the West. See Wikipedia, TV Tropes, or Everything2.


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