Could Anime Save The World ?

At a recent concert in Cairo, young Muslim women wearing head scarves jumped up and down and roared with delight. The crowd of more than 500 people were on their feet.

The star they had come to see? Hironobu Kageyama, a singer known for animation songs such as the theme tune of “Dragon Ball Z.”

Kageyama’s concert, his first in the Middle East, was part of the Grand Japanese Pop Culture Festival held in Cairo on March 8 and 9. Self-published manga magazines were given away, and a cosplay competition was held at the event, where the recent political uncertainty in Egypt seemed to have been forgotten for a while at least.

Ahmed Hisham, a 19-year-old Egyptian university student studying business administration, wore a Dragon Ball costume and had a picture of himself taken in front of the pyramids.

“My goal is to open an anime store,” he said.

Recharging Japan / Can pop culture recharge Japan?, The Yomiuri Shimbun, April 3, 2013

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