Content warning: mentions of violence, alcohol and drugs.


Yankii consisting of young men and women who dye their hair blond or orange, wear trashy clothes and smoke, drink before they're out of high school. They are famous for being loud, rude and refusing to take part in the strict manners of Japanese society.

This subculture flourished in Japan in the '80s and '90s. Yankii could be recognized by punch perms or pompadours, shaved eyebrows, altered school uniforms, popping squats, being poor students and causing violence or trouble.  Yankii is a term that applies to both boys and girls. Although it is rumored that yankii would be recruited into the yakuza (the Japanese mafia), this is not always true. Many yankii simply joined the regular workforce and lived regular, productive lives after high school.

The name "yankii" (ヤンキー) is borrowed from the English word "Yankee", a name taken from the American GIs who gave the Japanese their first glimpse into the world of rock ‘n’ roll.[1]

Fashion

  • Altered school uniforms
    • This includes making school uniforms look excessively oversized.
  • Dyed hair - red and blonde are popular.
  • If associated with Bosozoku gangs: long jackets with kanji that represent their group name and motto.
  • Pompadour
  • Miniskirts (women)
  • Shaved eyebrows

Lifestyle

Yankii tend to be part of a tight-knit community that was created during middle school and stayed together through adulthood.

Some stereotypes (throughout the late 1980s and early 1990s) included men entering the field of construction, while women were teen mothers who dropped out of highschool.

Yankii also maintain a strict social code with specific customs. Groups tend to have fighting codes that are focus on limiting violence.

Cars and motorcycles can also be a part of the Yanki lifestyle.

Related activities

  • Bullying
  • Drinking
  • Petty crime
  • Posing in a squat-like position
  • Pranks
  • Smoking and doing drugs

Gallery

References

  • https://www.japantimes.co.jp/life/2002/07/05/language/our-yankii-are-different-from-your-yankees/
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