While cultural acceptance of anime and manga has been always a divisive issue in the US, the mediums have always been extremely popular and influential – so much so that Bolivia’s Ministry of Education was recently caught plagiarizing a number of works for their latest textbooks.

Fruits Baskets

Tohru Honda, Akito Soma. Yuki Soma, Kyo Soma, Shigure Soma, Kagura Soma and Momiji Soma in Fruits Basket 2019 Season 2 Opening Song (2020), TMS Entertainment.

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According to a recent set of social media posts, the Ministry’s textbook releases for the upcoming 2023-2024 school year are adorned with artwork that was suspiciously reminiscent of images produced for various slice-of-life anime productions.

Hodaka Morishima

Hodaka Morishima in Weathering With You (2019), Toho

This apparent plagiarization was first detailed earlier this month when a number of Bolivians began sharing incriminating photos of the Ministry’s missteps to social media.

Sharing an image comparing the cover for Bolivia’s Learning Text for A Productive Community High School 2023-2024 – Level 3 and the a key visual produced by A-1 Pictures for their classic anime adaptation of Naoshi Arakawa Your Lie In April, former content coordinator and Historical Archive manager for the RTP Bolivia media outlet Sayuri Loza asserted (via DeepL), “How rich it is to plagiarize.”

Your Lie In April Plagiarism

Sayuri Loza via Facebook

In a follow-up post, Loza declared, “And there’s more, eh” and shared another side-by-side comparison, this time of the cover for her country’s Learning Text 2023 for A Productive Community High School – Level 6 and a key visual for TMS Entertainment’s 2016 animated adaptation of Ichigo Takano Orange.


Sayuri Loza via Facebook

Likewise, Facebook user Dayne Storm found more than a passing similarity between the cover of Learning Text 2023 for A Productive Community High School – Level 6 and the theatrical poster for Makoto Shinkai’s Weathering With You.

Weathering with you but in [the Bolivian town of] Roboré,” wrote Storm. “I think this is the otaku collection of the Ministry of Education.”

Shinkai plagiarism

Dayne Storm via Facebook

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Storm also noticed that Learning Text 2023 for A Productive Community High School – Level 5 featured four school children who were posed very similarly to a piece of keyart from TMS Entertainment’s 2019 adaptation of Natsuki Takaya’s Fruit Basket.

“And another book to the otaku collection of the Ministry of Education,” she added.

fruits basket plagiarism

Dayne Storm via Facebook

And per a post by Juan Galletas Martinez, the cover of Learning Text 2023 for A Productive Community High School – Level 2 appears to have taken inspiration from  one of Kyoto Animation’s key visuals for their adaptation of Kakifly’s K-ON!.

K-ON plagiarism

Juan Galletas Martinez via Facebook

In light of the covers unsurprisingly going viral, Bolivia’s Minister of Education Edgar Pary ultimately admitted that the artwork for some of their textbook covers had, in fact, been plagiarized.

A few days after the plagiarized covers went viral, the Bolivian online news publication reported that the Minister of Education Edgar Pary admitted that the covers for “some” textbooks distributed to students were plagiarized.

“At this moment the questioning goes out to the cover,” Pary said to Bolivian news publication Página Siete. “We regret very much that this plagiarism has occurred, however, it is worth mentioning that the images have their authorship signed by the person and it is that person who made the covers.”


Yui Hirasawa, Mio Akiyama, Ritsu Tainaka, Tsumugi Kotobuki in K-ON! Episode 3 “Cram Session!” (2009), Kyoto Animation.

After stressing to Página Siete that he would not allow plagiarism “by any of our officials,” Pary announced that the Ministry of Education was “taking knowledge of it and immediately we have made the corresponding administrative actions against those responsible based on internal procedures.”

“As a ministry we work with different people responsible for each of the areas,” he ultimately explained. “For this reason, administrative actions will be taken and a procedure will be established to sanction those responsible.  With this we are going to set a precedent so that it does not happen again.”

Your Lie in April

Kaori Miyazono playing Violin in Your Lie in April Episode 3 “Inside Spring” (2014), Aniplex

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