This study critically investigates the construction of gender on a Japanese hologram animestyle social robot Azuma Hikari. By applying a mixed method merging the visual semiotic method and heterogeneous engineering approach in software studies, the signs in Azuma Hikari’s anthropomorphized image and the interactivity enabled by the multimedia interface have been analyzed and discussed. The analysis revealed a stereotyped representation of a Japanese “ideal bride” who should be cute, sexy, comforting, good at housework, and subordinated to “Master”-like husband. Moreover, the device interface disciplines users to play the role of “wage earner” in the simulated marriage and reconstructs the gender relations in reality. It suggests the humanization of the objects is often associated with the dehumanization and objectification of the human in reverse.



Author ORCID Identifier

Jindong Liu 0000-0002-5456-0148