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Japan and Egypt: Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum
Perry Jackman



When asked to compare and contrast Egypt and Japan, many would find more differences than similarities. I don’t blame because when I think of Japan I think of sushi, Buddhism, and geishas and when I think of Egypt I think of pharaohs, pyramids and Muslims. To a person who has been to neither country, one would think that these two countries would have nothing in common. They are on different continents; they have different religions, and have different cultures. Fortunately for me, I have had a chance to visit both these countries. Oddly enough, I have found more similarities than differences.

            Both countries have been affected by globalization and are heavily influenced by the western world. Also both countries have a strong and well preserved history that has been unaffected by the outside world. To the naked eye Egypt and Japan seem to be complete polar opposites, but if one takes a closer look, they will find that Egypt and Japan are more parallel than they thought.

Field Reports

Japan: Vernacular and Transnational 
Egypt: Old vs. New


            After reading articles, “Supply-Side Sushi: Commodity, Market and the Global City” and “Relocation and Creation of a Global City” and visiting Japan and Egypt, I found that both countries are struggling with balancing their culture with globalization. When I was walking around in both cities, I felt that I was in a large westernized city, but when I looked across the street, I would find an ancient sight, like the pyramids or an ancient Buddhist temple. The cities of Egypt and Japan are developing and getting closer to Globalization. The closer they are to globalization, the closer they are to losing their culture. I hope that both countries find a way to preserve their history and culture and also find a way to be one of the global powers in the world.

            I have also found that both Egypt and Japan have kept their sense of culture even with the heavy influence of globalization. When I was in Egypt, I could hear the call of prayer echo through the streets of Cairo and see veiled women walking down the street. In Japan, I saw women proudly wear the Geisha costumes and monks standing frozen in the streets asking for money. Their pride for their past and culture has made Japan and Egypt unlike any other country.

            Globalization has played a huge role as the cities of Egypt and Japan develop. Both countries have global businesses stationed in their huge cities. However, I believe the major cities in Japan are more globilized than the major cities of Egypt. Japan has a stronger Economy and is more developed. There technology is more advanced and do not have poverty problems like Egypt. You can find examples of globalization in the cities of Egypt; however they need to solve their poverty problems before they can be one of the global powers like Japan. If they put an end of the housing problems in Cairo and work on the slums, Egypt could catch up with Japan. Their economy would increase, become more developed and modern.


Before going on this voyage, I thought that Egypt and Japan couldn’t be more different and that they have nothing in common. However, after taking this course I was able to find numerous similarities between the two when I visited each country.  The people who haven’t seen the cities of Japan and Egypt first hand wouldn’t be able to see the similarities between the two countries. For example, they wouldn’t notice that both countries are incredibly proud of their past and of their culture. They also wouldn’t have noticed how each country is heavily influenced by globalization. Luckily for me, I have had the chance to see how both countries correlate. 

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