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May 25, 2008 8:55 AM Subscribe
Hello Kitty becomes Japan's ambassador to China.
posted by infini (18 comments total)
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The little half-Japanese, half-English cat has become so globally recognisable that it is, perhaps
, inevitable that the Japanese board of tourism has appointed her their official tourism ambassador to China and Hong Kong. This is not the first time
the world has looked to Hello Kitty to perform an ambassadorial role; she has been United States children's ambassador for Unicef since 1983.
"It seems predictable enough
to have her adopted as a diplomatic envoy," she says. "That has been the way of the 'Cool Japan
' bandwagon for a few years now, and relations with China are no healthier. It seems a bit farcical to select Hello Kitty, however: as if a dumbed-down cultural icon that was cool in her retro boom in the 1990s, and which Chinese teenagers dig, can somehow do something significant to alter the gnarly
and difficult state of China-Japan relations