Consuming Japan

Popular Culture and the Globalizing of 1980s America

By Andrew C. McKevitt

288 pp., 6.125 x 9.25, 16 halftones, notes, bibl., index

  • Paperback ISBN: 978-1-4696-3447-0
    Published: October 2017
  • Hardcover ISBN: 978-1-4696-3446-3
    Published: October 2017
  • E-book EPUB ISBN: 978-1-4696-3448-7
    Published: August 2017
  • E-book PDF ISBN: 979-8-8908-4994-6
    Published: August 2017

Studies in United States Culture

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This insightful book explores the intense and ultimately fleeting moment in 1980s America when the future looked Japanese. Would Japan’s remarkable post–World War II economic success enable the East Asian nation to overtake the United States? Or could Japan’s globe-trotting corporations serve as a model for battered U.S. industries, pointing the way to a future of globalized commerce and culture? While popular films and literature recycled old anti-Asian imagery and crafted new ways of imagining the “yellow peril,” and formal U.S.-Japan relations remained locked in a holding pattern of Cold War complacency, a remarkable shift was happening in countless local places throughout the United States: Japanese goods were remaking American consumer life and injecting contemporary globalization into U.S. commerce and culture. What impact did the flood of billions of Japanese things have on the ways Americans produced, consumed, and thought about their place in the world?

From autoworkers to anime fans, Consuming Japan introduces new unorthodox actors into foreign-relations history, demonstrating how the flow of all things Japanese contributed to the globalizing of America in the late twentieth century.

About the Author

Andrew C. McKevitt is assistant professor of history at Louisiana Tech University.
For more information about Andrew C. McKevitt, visit the Author Page.


“Has much to teach about the effects of consumption of Japanese culture in America.” —American Historical Review

"This provocative, timely, and well-written book offers abundant insights and is sophisticated in its own right. Consuming Japan truly merits a wide audience — one that is both scholarly and public." —Thomas W. Zeiler, University of Colorado

"Using compelling and effective narrative devices, Andrew C. McKevitt has written a book grounded in original and imaginative research and presented in eminently readable prose." — Sayuri Guthrie Shimizu, Rice University