This course examines contemporary Japanese popular culture as a way of understanding cultural dimensions of globalization and its complex operation, which transcends traditional national boundaries. Narrowly defined, J-pop refers to a genre of music that has dominated Japan's music scene since the early 1990s. In this course we extend our investigation to include various other media, forms, and expressions of popular culture related to our interest, e.g., manga, anime, films, computer games, and distinctive fashions. These cultural industries together play an important role in the transnational production and dissemination of images and ideas about race, gender, and sexuality. We also examine the phenomenon from a consumers' side, by delving into the subcultures and subcultural praxis of people called "otaku" (nerd, geek, mania) who have supported and propelled the transnational trend through their compulsive consumption of both tangible and intangible commodities of J-pop and avid networking.