Saturday, April 19, 2008

Essays on Animé

While my blogging hiatus grows on account of my preparation for graduation, I've been doing a little reading in between the writing, photgraphing, and installing. Japanese Visual Culture: Explorations in the World of Manga and Animé is a collection of essays about the relation of animé to culture. Its a good read, and convenient when you have little precious moments to keep a book on your lap.

Heres a couple of sentences from "Opening the Closed World of Shoujo Manga" by Mizuki Takahashi about what "shoujo" means. It was shocking to me but makes the genre so much more sensical:

"Usually glossed with the English word "girl," the term shoujo specifically indicates a young woman who is not allows to express her sexuality. While a shoujo may be sexually mature physically, she is socially considered sexually immature and is therefore identifiable as neither male nor female."

That shoujo refers to a sexually immature condition, rather than an age or gender, makes a lot of sense.

The history that follows this passage is amazing and quite scary. I reccommend anyone interested in the history of the genre read this essay.

An exciting exhibition came and went in the past couple of years called Shoujo Manga: Girl Power! That is worth investigating if you're interested in the art related to the genre.

Another week or so and I'll be back in action. Thanks for reading!

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