What is "Computer Animation?" Examining Technological Advancements and Cultural Aesthetics of Japanese Animation

Educators Paper
Thursday, 9 August
2:30 - 3:15 pm
Room 8

This paper examines three current narratives of computer animation in the United States:

  • The ideology driven by the search for a perfect representation of reality

  • The mythology based on the modernist paradigm of progression

  • The hegemony established by a habitual mode of production.
By investigating current computer animation in the United States and Japan, the paper argues that in different socio-cultural contexts, computer animation acquires different cultural meanings and styles, and re-constitutes a specific cultural aesthetic for the society in which it resides. By examining "Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children" (2005), it identifies divergent perceptions through which computer animation acquires its cultural meaning and aesthetics: the hyper-spectacle embedded in a superflat culture and the tradition of contingency.


Lien F Shen
Ball State University
lshen (at) bsu.edu