Tanjiro Earrings Controversy Explained: Hanafuda Earrings Controversy.

About Tanjiro Earrings aka Hanafuda Earrings. 

Attack on Titan is a Japanese manga series which is written and illustrated by Hajime Isayama. The series is based on a world that is protected by 3 different walls which protects them from human-eating humanoids who are referred to as Titans. The manga and the anime series is widely followed and the most popular internationally. The series first premiered back in 2019. At that time the series gave rise to a minor controversy. The controversy was a result of the earrings won by the main characters. 

In the anime series the earrings are used as a medium to travel back and forth in time. It is one of the very interesting things used in the series. The earrings take us to the past and later explain the importance of the past in the current or the present times. The earrings were passed to Tanjiro together with the blessings of Hinokami Kagura also known as the dance of the fire God. The earrings get passed to the male heir in the family. The main character Tanjiro is seen wearing them since the first day. 


When Tanjiro carried his sister on his back the same was seen. Besides that, the same earrings were seen in the ears of Tanjiro’s father when he appeared in the flashback. 

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In the anime series, Tanjiro is seen wearing Hanafuda card earrings that depict the Japanese imperial flag. It is believed that the earrings are passed from one generation to the other. We can say that the earrings are hereditary. ‘Hanafuda’ is translated as ‘flower cards’. Which was a part of a traditional card game played in Japan. 

However, the red circle accompanied with rays that extend over an arc were not part of the official Hanafuda cards designed earlier in Japan. 

Tanjiro Earrings Controversy or Hanafuda Earrings Controversy.

This gave rise to the controversy. People say that the red color circle accompanied with rays extending over an arc was a symbol used by the Japanese military at the times when it colonized the Asian countries during world war 2. This symbolizes the aggression of the Japanese military. The symbol used in the earrings is very controversial in Asian countries. 

In chapter 68 of the manga, we had seen that Hashira busts out Tanjiro because he was wearing the Hanafuda earrings. He accused Tanjiro of insulting him. He said 

“You’re a practitioner of sun Breathing. I know those earrings. It was written down!”

So we can say that besides the military controversy the earrings in the series were the cause of fights and arguments between the characters. 

Demon Slayer Creator’s Reaction on Tanjiro Earrings Controversy.

As we all know the first people approached by the media and the audience were the showrunners and the producers. In response to the controversy, the showrunners immediately made changes to the earring design for those Asian countries where the series was getting aired.

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 Changes in Tanjiro’s original earring design were made in the Asian countries including China and Korea. From the red circle accompanied with the rays extending around an arc the design was changed into a red circle accompanied by mountains and horizontal lines in between them. 

In the series the earrings were used with the only purpose to pay homage to Japan and the Japanese culture. However, the flowers on the earrings gave a different message due to which the controversy rose. For the Asian countries that gave rise to the controversy the earrings are a symbol of power and remind them of the Japanese military crimes. 

Tanjiro Earrings Meaning.

However, in the series, the anime depicts the fact that there is some connection between Yoriichi Tsugikuni and Tanjiro’s ancestor from the Sengoku Era- Sumiyoshi. The earrings are only passed to the Breath of the Sun style and hence Tajiro and his father are seen wearing them. There is a long history that is associated with the earrings by the Kamado and the Yoriichi Tsugikuni family which is still unknown to the readers and viewers. It is a symbol of power and strength and hence only a few chosen ones are seen wearing them. 

The earrings are also associated with something life-threatening by Muzan. Who later sends 2 of his demon subordinates after Tanjiro. The earrings that he sees in Tanjiro’s ears come with a reminder that reminds him of his encounter with a powerful demon. 

Design of the Earrings.

Talking about the design of the earring.Then the earring holds the look of a paper talisman.The original earring has a red color circle on top along with rays or lines that extend from in different directions. The earring sin really has flowers on them but the red circle and the rays extending symbolizes the rising sun. But soon after the rise of the controversy in Asian countries the design of the earrings was changed into a red circle along with mountains and horizontal lines as I said earlier. 

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About Demon Slayer: Kimetsu No Yaiba.

The  Demon Slayer: Kimetsu No Yaiba is a Japanese manga series that was written and illustrated by Koyoharu Gotouge. It’s based on the life of a teenage boy named Tanjiro Kamado. He is struggling to become a demon slayer after he saw his family getting slaughtered. He also had to face the harsh reality of his sister Nezuko who was turned into a demon. 

It was serialized in the Shueisha’s Shonen manga magazine Weekly Shonen Jump. From February 2019 till May 2020. The manga chapters are collected into 23 tankobon volumes. This is published by the Viz media and manga plus platforms in English. 

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