Ecosplay in Mass Media: Decoding Power and Protest

Credit: Fusion Arts
 Ram Dwivedi
Director Research, CCGS

The term ‘Cosplay’ was coined by M Takahashi in the year 1984. Popularized by mass media it became a global phenomenon. Prefixed with ‘E’ to the cosplaying gives a complex reflection of meaning. What is that?  It becomes ‘Ecos’, meaning thereby is that, ecology added with costume playing. In contemporary global scenario Ecology has become an important issues to get addressed. It is propounded that a Cosplaying is always done under certain Ecological conditions and essentially provides a meaning to the coplayer. The cosplaying was working, effectively, much earlier than 1984 as a symbol of power and protest during public gatherings, formal meetings and mass movements. This research paper evaluates Ecosplaying as a social-Infuencer and as symbols of power and protest projected through various platforms of communication media. In this research the role of mass media in depicting Ecosplaying will also be discussed to examine its effectivity in environmental awareness and how these acts of ecosplaying are bringing substantial changes in the real life, opinion buiding and social movements. A qualitative research methodology has been adopted to elucidate the research problem.  


The term ‘Cosplay’ denotes the human-playing with the costumes, and establishes a strong relationship between reel and real life, particularly in Japanese society. Gradually the cosplaying emerged as an independent genre and became pupular in Western world. The emphasis in cosplaying was on the clothing, make-ups, accessories and the gadgets carried by the cosplayer.  The cosplaying was working, effectively, much earlier than 1984 as a symbol of power and protest and it is still influencing the daily life of common people. The life and act of Gandhi, who symbolizes self-reliance, nationalism and protest to brutal power, is an example of these phenomena. In recent movements, particularly in France and Hong Kong, costumes were used to raise the issues before their respective authorities. Yellow vests and black masks have become symbols of protests and widely covered by TV media channels. The regular broadcasts of these protests empowered the common people to get their voice heard. [Full Text at]

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