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The Journal of Japanese Language Literature Studies > Volume 13(1); 2021 > Article
Border Crossings: The Journal of Japanese-Language Literature Studies 2021;13(1): 61-74.
doi: https://doi.org/10.22628/bcjjl.2021.13.1.61
Understanding Manga as a “Style” through Essay Manga’s Multimodal Literacies:And Its Relations to the Discourse on “local art style” in Malaysian Comics
Suraya Binti Md NASIR
Senior lecturer of Multimedia Creative Department, Faculty of Art, Computing & Creative Industry, Sultan Idris Education University
Understanding Manga as a “Style” through Essay Manga’s Multimodal Literacies――And Its Relations to the Discourse on “local art style” in Malaysian Comics
Correspondence  Suraya Binti Md NASIR ,Email: suraya.mn@fskik.upsi.edu.my
Published online: 30 December 2021.
Copyright ©2021 The Global Institute for Japanese Studies, Korea University
This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
The trans-cultural consumption of Japanese Manga in Malaysia has prompted a significant amount of manga-influenced local works. As an outcome, traces of Japanese Manga can be found through its iconic art styles, storytelling and Japanese culture in these works. While fans show the positive response for these manga-influenced local works, the artists’ community shows the opposite response, in particular, related to the representation of the “typical Japanese manga-style”, resulting in the idea that these artists are turning away from the “local art style” which has been pioneered by the predecessors. The sentiment of Japanese Manga as a “single art style” contributed to this misconception on what constitutes a Japanese manga identity. In which the researcher proposes the introduction of ‘Essay Manga’ (コミックエッセイ or エッセイマンガ) as a way to divert the attention of Japanese Manga’s art style, by shifting to the other attributes of Japanese Manga which is the story. Essay Manga is a manga work that describes the events that happened around the manga artist but without any specifications towards manga visual conventions. To illustrate the importance of story versus art style in Essay Manga, the characteristics, forms, examples are sketched out trough the works of Hosokawa Tenten and Azuma Hideo. A section on Malaysia “local art style” is also discussed and ties in with the discussion of Manga. Eventually, the study argues that Japanese Manga is not limited to visual representation; instead, it is accommodated by its engaging storytelling, thus justifying Essay Manga’s potential as a multimodal literacy works.
Keywords: Essay Manga, Art Style, Local Identity, Multimodal, Malaysia

キ―ワ―ド: エッセイマンガ, アートスタイル, ローカルアイデンティティ, マルチモーダル, マレーシア
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