Japanese Mothers Complain About Expressions Of Sexuality In Anime

Complaints flooded the column emphasizing that the creators should know the difference between "stories and reality"

Sexuality in Anime

The Chunichi Shimbun in Japan published numerous comments from mothers in their “What should I do?” column, detailing their concerns about the expressions of sexuality within the manga and anime that is available to minors.

These mothers were not happy with the sexually suggestive content that was displayed in the series that their children watched or read. The common complaints included skimpy clothing and focus on sex among other things.

A 36-year-old woman from Gifu prefecture complained, “I am concerned about the sexually suggestive content of the anime series that my second grader watches. A boy touches a girl’s chest and her underwear is visible. There is also a girl in “Kimetsu no Yaiba” who emphasizes her breasts. This is a matter of concern. I wonder if anyone could expose this situation”

A 40-year-old woman from Toyohashi, Aichi, who has a second-grade daughter and an elementary-school-age son sympathized, ” I think the same.”

Every time she watches anime series or children’s commercials that emphasize sex more than necessary, such as breast size or clothing, she wonders, “ For whom is this? I feel offended ”

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More such complaints flooded the column emphasizing that the creators should know the difference between ” stories and reality”.

On the other hand, a 42-year-old woman from Nagoya said,“ It is natural for elementary school children to be interested in sex. It is impossible to remove it from the manga and anime.”

She revealed that she usually talks about sexuality with her daughter in first grade of secondary school and her son in sixth grade of primary school. In her opinion, it is better to be open about sex instead of the children having to find out by other means.

“ I hold talks about sexuality with my children, and I tell them what behaviors are not accepted by society. Sexuality is what makes people attractive, exposing them to various types of expressions will help them to have the power to decide themselves, “she concluded.

On this matter, Keiko Ota (45), a lawyer, familiar with media expression explained “sexual expression” is not bad, but “expression that makes sexual violence entertaining” is the problem.

She goes in detail to discuss that “turning a skirt” used to be regarded as a “prank”. However, the situation where “a girl is unwillingly looked inside her skirt” is not a “slightly naughty and funny episode”. It’s a type of sexual violence.

Yoko Shida (60), a professor at Musashino Art University who studies “freedom of expression” commented that sexual expressions that promote discrimination and abuse should be considered more problematic than obscene expressions.

“Children have a “right to develop”. If a child is the subject of a sexual photo or video, it is illegal as “child pornography”. However, even if you don’t go that far, there are expressions in anime that can be called sexual exploitation that you have ignorantly exploited. It would be nice to have a filter that prevents young children, such as elementary school students, who do not understand the meaning or good or bad from being exposed to such things. If there is an expression that feels “this is sexual exploitation,” parents can say NO to the creators and society,” said Shida.

Source: Chunichi Shimbun

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