Skip to comments.The Samurai And The Ainu (Read This Before Seeing The Movie "The Last Samurai")
Posted on 01/17/2004 2:50:55 PM PST by blam
THE SAMURAI AND THE AINU
Findings by American anthropologist C. Loring Brace, University of Michigan, will surely be controversial in race conscious Japan. The eye of the predicted storm will be the Ainu, a "racially different" group of some 18,000 people now living on the northern island of Hokkaido. Pure-blooded Ainu are easy to spot: they have lighter skin, more body hair, and higher-bridged noses than most Japanese. Most Japanese tend to look down on the Ainu.
Brace has studied the skeletons of about 1,100 Japanese, Ainu, and other Asian ethnic groups and has concluded that the revered samurai of Japan are actually descendants of the Ainu, not of the Yayoi from whom most modern Japanese are descended. In fact, Brace threw more fuel on the fire with:
"Dr. Brace said this interpretation also explains why the facial features of the Japanese ruling class are so often unlike those of typical modern Japanese. The Ainu-related samurai achieved such power and prestige in medieval Japan that they intermarried with royality and nobility, passing on Jomon-Ainu blood in the upper classes, while other Japanese were primarily descended from the Yoyoi." The reactions of Japanese scientists have been muted so. One Japanese anthropologist did say to Brace," I hope you are wrong."
The Ainu and their origin have always been rather mysterious, with some people claiming that the Ainu are really Caucasian or proto-Caucasian - in other words, "white." At present, Brace's study denies this interpretation.
The person playing the "Last Samurai" is a tall guy that looks less 'Asian' than one would expect. This article may explain why.
"The Samurai were descended from the Ainu and were tall and somewhat Caucasian looking, tall, light-skinned and hairy (even today the Ainu are the hairest people). The Samurai were once the ruling class in Japan and some anthropologists suspect the Japanese practice of 'white-face' originates from that period as a way of emulating the 'royals'."
"Kennewick Man's DNA, although ruled 'inconclusive', showed a high relationship to the Ainu.
"Further, the Jomon culture (which precedes the Ainu in Japan) is identified with a specific type of pottery labeled 'Cord Pottery'. This 'Cord Pottery' has been found in Olmec (1400BC-300BC) ruins in Mexico. The oldest Jomon skeleton ever found in Japan is 13,000 years old. Some believe the migrations that put the Ainu in Japan began 7,600 years ago when the Black Sea (Noah's Flood?) was flooded with salt water. Small world, huh? "
Let me know if you wish to be added or removed from this ping list.
Well, we are one big happy family. /sarcasm
The level of racism in Japan never ceases to amaze me.
The Japanese go farther and designate occupations for the lesser races. No pure blood can be an undertaker, plumber, garbage collector, etc.-- those jobs are for the servant races.
It seems to work. I mean, nobody's ever yet managed to stage any sort of a successful demographic coupe against the Japanese in their own land and they've apparently had 13,000 years to try it. It'd be nice if we could say the same thing...
No, I haven't. I did propose to my son at Christmas that there is the making of a business here. I expect everyone has relatives they don't want to know about though.
IM very HO their culture is neither that old or that strong, but it is that monolithic. A Japanese reporter was quoted in the Economist about how he was amazed when he was asked for directions at an airport in New York. He said that no Japanese would ever ask a Caucasian directions at a Japanese airport.
A picture of an Ainu taken in the 19th century.
Modern Ainu seem like a cross between oriental and caucasian. Archeological evidence indicates that they were a fishing/hunting culture. It would not be too outlandish to think that a fishing culture would expand along the coastline of the Middle East, past south Asia, eventually hitting the Japanese Islands, and continuing on up the coast of asia and across to the west coast of North America
Depends on who you call 'the Japanese.' Seems (to me) like the Asians that now call themselves the Japanese have done a pretty good job of 'displacing' the original (Ainu/Jomon) Japanese people, huh?
I knew a female engineer from Okinawa who said that the Japanese discriminated against them terribly. She 'looked' Asian to me except that she had real curly hair.
I believe the Hakka are mixed blood descendents of these folks, The Curse Of The Red-Headed Mummy.
There are records of their migration all the way across China and the Hakka with curly hair or high nose-bridge were killed during this/these migrations. They are related to the 'red-headed' folks via than Han, Xiongnu, Miao, Yuezhi and ultimately the Schythians, all Indo-Asian steppe people.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.