Cuteness in Japanese Culture

Cuteness—kawaisa—is a prominent aspect of Japanese popular culture that first emerged in the 1970s, when teenage girls developed a new writing style using big, round characters decorated with hearts, smiley faces, and the like. To capitalize on this growing trend, companies launched cute merchandise lines. Today, cute elements can be found almost everywhere in Japan, as evidenced by the fact that even police departments have cute mascots. How has All Nippon Airways made its planes cuter?


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