Japanese "pulp" magazines

Structure, content, and function

By William Wetherall

Originally submitted as a term paper titled
The Structure, Content, and Function of Japanese 'Pulp' Magazines
in Anthropology 191, Winter Quarter 1969, instructor George De Vos
Department of Anthropology, University of California, Berkeley
Typescript, title page plus iii, 30 pages

Japanese pulp magazines 2017 preface | Preface | Structure | Content | Function | Conclusion | Sources and annotations
Tables Grading of Japanese pulp magazines | Structure of Japanese pulp magazines

Japanese pulp magazines

2017 preface

Reading this paper half a century later, I would grade it "C" on my overall scale, meaning "fair with quite a few serious problems". Knowing what I think I know better today than I did then, I wax between cynically disputing every assertion I made in the paper, and generously dismissing only 20 or 30 percent of what I wrote.

I wrote the paper to showcase a variety of real and imaginary research and analytical abilities, applied to topics and materials drawn from popular culture. Mass magazines and their content were totally beyond the scope of "serious" contemporary scholarship, which was supposed to be about economic, political, and social institutions, intellectual history, religion and philosophy, and the fine arts. De Vos's lectures, however, had left me with the impression that he might accept the subject matter of my paper -- and he did. I did not yet know him personally, and was prepared for a lower grade, but he gave my paper an "A" and wrote a number of remarks which indicated that he liked what I did or tried to to do. Tellingly, he did not comment on my odd jargon and pretentious style, nor mark a single spelling, grammar, or usage problem. This was a new experience for me, as most of my papers came back with at least some remarks about the mechanics of writing.

De Vos was amused by the colorful tables I created to show the "grading" and "structure" of my collection of magazines. He called them "mandalas" and would later joke, when referring to the need to reduce a jumble of multidimensional data to a single chart that revealed at a glance all its patterns and meanings, that "Maybe we could get Bill to make a mandala." To this day, I have a strong bent toward graphic representations, whether tables, charts, or graphs, or schematic diagrams.

In many ways, this single report sealed my fate at Berkeley. I was happy enough to be studying Japanese and Chinese, and then Korean, in the Department of Oriental Languages. The department's classical and modern Japanese literature courses were fun if not exactly exciting. And the few courses I was required to take in other departments were tolerable. But having abandoned my engineering studies, and decided not to pursue the interests in medical pathology I acquired during my military service, I was still looking for something to "do" and a "field" in which to do it. I found "Oriental Languages" and "History" and "Sociology" too confining. "Anthropology" was closer to where I felt I wanted to be, but I was not especially drawn to its "cultural" and "physical" focuses. Archaeology had always interested me, but not as a specialty.

I can't clearly remember whose idea it was that I petition for what was called an "individual major". I had seen the option in College of Letters and Science literature describing program choices, but whether I first approached De Vos with the idea, or whether he suggested it as a solution to my search for an academic "home", I can't recall.

As a major in Oriental Languages, and not Anthropology, my faculty adviser at the time was Frank Motofuji, who taught Japanese literature. But when it came to talk of what interested me most about Japan and its people, in relation to other countries and their peoples, I gravitated toward De Vos. His focus on comparative human behavior through what he called "cultural psychology" was intriguing. As an "approach" to understanding why people do what they do, because of or despite their social and cultural circumstances, it appealed to the "cosmological" viewpoint I acquired when asking What shall we do with Andromeda?" and synthesizing Cybernetics and semantics -- my recent efforts while in the Army, still on the run from my engineering studies, to understand the workings of the human condition and the problems humanity faces in an increasingly industrialized, nuclearized, and technocratic, yet still very tribal and nationalistic world. De Vos's illumination of the grandeurs (plural) of life through its darker windows appealed to me.

Enrollment at the University of California involved different levels. At the "college" level I had migrated from the College of Engineering to the College of Letters and Science. At the "departmental" level I had moved from the Department of Electrical Engineering to the Department of Oriental Languages. The Department of Anthropology was also in the College of Letters and Science, but like all departments, it had its own admissions rules and degree requirements. Creating an individual major, within the College of Letters and Science, required that I petition for recognition of a degree program in a non-departmental field, involving courses in two or more related departments. The petition had to be sponsored by a professor in one of the departments, who agreed to be my adviser, and supported by several professors in the related departments. De Vos agreed to be my adviser, and Motofuji and a couple of other professors also signed my petition for a degree in Japanese Studies.

Without De Vos's accommodation of my unusual academic interests when an undergraduate, I would never have been able to continue my studies at Berkeley. He, above all, understood my need for disciplinary freedom -- not freedom from the disciplines of academic rigour, but freedom from the limitations of departmental constraints regarding themes and methodologies. De Vos was himself an academic outlaw who didn't fit in the mainstreams of either Anthropology or Psychology, who insisted that personality was neither determined by nor free from culture, that cultures were subject to individual mediation, and no culture could be understood without examining "abnormal" as well as "normal" behaviors in their sociocultural and psychocultural contexts. Before taking courses from De Vos, I had acquired interests in "anti-social" behaviors such as racial discrimination, suicide, and crime. I understood that these were human behaviors found in every country. But it had never occurred to me such behaviors exposed the limits of cultural determinism -- to put it in a way would probably have triggered a long response from De Vos were he still alive and able to read this. De Vos rejected pat "national character" explanations, which generally hold that suicide in Japan is induced by a "culture of suicide". He (and Hiroshi Wagatsuma, his closest collaborator at the time) recognized that all suicide is motivated by common psychological factors, which cultural factors then affect, but on a case-by-case basis that belies the very notion of "national character" -- which encourages beliefs in lock-step, culturally driven mass behavior.

As a postscript to this wandering latter-day preface, I would add that all the magazines used in the following report are still in my possession -- in one of perhaps two hundred boxes of magazines collected over the years.

10 April 2017



'Pulp' magazines represent a sizeable [sic = sizable] portion of the magazine inventory in Japan, and they function significantly in Japanese mass media and popular culture. It is the object of this paper to describe some of these magazines and to analyze some of their connections with Japanese culture. The descriptive aspect will be carried out in two parts, the first a discussion of terms that frequent the paper followed by a look at the overall structure of Japanese popular magazines, and the second a general comment on the nature of topics featured in articles, caricature, gravure, and advertising in Japanese 'pulp' magazines followed by a description of some of the more bizarre ingredients of caricature and advertising. The analytical aspect, in a third part, will suggest how Japanese 'pulp' magazines service certain fetishes that attend the Japanese beauty paradigm and stimulate participation in the gendai no ukiyo (modern floating world) (現代の浮世) that has inspired some Japanese journalists to call the present period of Japanese cultural history Shōwa Genroku (昭和元禄).

The paper is not a quantitative account in any sense of the word. Vital statistics regarding Japanese magazine circulation and readership behavior would have been difficult to collect and organize in ten weeks even had the most efficient sources been known. The few statistics available in the United States are dated and in any case they do not give the type of information that would be relevant here. The effort I have made to dimensionalize my description of Japanese 'pulp' magazines with figures is intended to convey a general impression of how these magazines are composed and graded, and nothing quantitative is implied. Nor is the paper a content analysis except in the sense that I isolated the most readily observable features and described and analyzed them. My knowledge of Japanese culture and its attendant language is not such that an attempt to describe and analyze 'pulp' grade articles beyond discerning their general orientation would have been very productive at this level of enquiry. Caricature and advertising are not necessarily less difficult to analyze but are generally more susceptible to description if linguistic competency is lacking. A large percentage of the information transmitted by caricature is pictorial, and if information in advertising is not pictorial it at least tends to be concentrated in vocabulary rather than grammar.

The numbers in the right margins correlate with SOURCES AND ANNOTATIONS given at the end of the paper. When some element of a sentence with which a number is associated is not explicitly mentioned in an annotation, then the source has been either quoted or paraphrased, or in some less direct way used for its information pertinent to the topic under discussion.



In the United States, where quality paper is comparatively inexpensive, magazines having wide circulations are commonly produced with relatively smooth, white paper, whereas others are generally produced with courser, newsprint paper. (Note 1) Total circulation is not, however, the ultimate determinant of the type of paper used. 'Pulp' magazines are characterized by a lower subscription-to-newsstand circulation ratio, an index that roughly correlates with the degree of sophistication or grade of a magazine. Consequently these magazines are unable to attract high-grade advertising and must resort to lower grade paper to be marketable. It is therefore generally possible to determine the grade of American magazines by their paper. Slicks are usually sophisticated (Saturday Review, Atlantic) or vernacular (Time, Life), whereas pulps are more-or-less unsophisticated (True Confessions, Stag).

The Random House Dictionary of the English Language gives three connotations for 'slick' as in 'slick magazines' and embeds a 'content' connotation of 'pulp' as in 'pulp magazine' in a 'structure' connotation. (Note 2)

  1. a magazine printed on papers having a more or less glossy finish
  2. such a magazine regarded as possessing qualities, as expensiveness, chic, and sophistication, which hold appeal for a particular readership, as one whose members enjoy or are seeking affluence
  3. such a magazine regarded as having a sophisticated, deftly executed, but shallow or glib literary content
  1. a magazine or book printed on rough, low quality paper made of wood pulp, usually containing sensational and lurid stories, articles, etc.

All of the above Interpretations apply to 'slick' and 'pulp' as these terms are used in this paper.

By vernacular I mean that which attracts the general society and seldom repels on the basis of education or taste. As Lantis suggests, vernacular culture is where gemeinshaft and gesellshaft come together. By sophisticated I mean that which attracts persons who are inclined towards intellectual experiences, and by unsophisticated I mean that which attracts persons who are inclined towards sensational experiences. (Note 3) By popular culture I mean a complex that encompasses both the vernacular and the unsophisticated realms, as opposed to high culture, which encompasses the sophisticated realms. These terms are defined for reference purposes only, and in using them I do not mean to imply that intricate cultures are so handily divisible into types.

The average American wage earner receives about $20 a day, and the average Japanese wage earner receives about 2000 yen a day, This means that in relative terms the penny is more-or-less equivalent to the yen whereas in comparative terms the penny is equivalent to 3.6 yen. (Note 4) Typical American magazines, weeklies or monthlies cost between 50¢ and $1, although some pulp magazines sell for less. Japanese weeklies vary between 50 and 100 yen, and monthlies between 100 and 300 yen. Magazines are clearly more expensive for Japanese than for Americans by an average factor of about two. Most Japanese weeklies cost 60 or 70 yen, which corresponds to a burden of 60¢ or 70¢ in the United States. Most Japanese pulp magazines are weeklies, in contrast with American pulp magazines, which are generally monthlies.

By Japanese pulp magazine is meant a Japanese magazine that is regarded as unsophisticated or sensational in the context of Japanese popular culture. Few Japanese magazines are manufactured out of high-grade slick paper, and so it is generally impossible to classify them by their paper. Moreover, Japanese are inclined to accept in their vernacular realm what Americans would reject as sensational, and so the criteria for grading Japanese magazines are not as sensitive as the criteria for grading American magazines. Consequently, 'pulp' is more precisely defined in the context of American popular culture than in the Japanese context, and an equivalent Japanese term is not readily forthcoming.

There are several Japanese terms that hit upon the meaning of 'pulp', but because they tend to overlap rather than juxtapose, they are not always interchangeable. One gets the feeling that taishū zasshi (popular magazines) (大衆雑誌) include vernacular magazines and upper grade pulps, whereas kudaranai zasshi (lowbrow magazines) (下らない雑誌) overlap upper grade pulps and extend into lower grade pulps. Yasuzasshi (cheap magazines) (安雑誌) and kasutori zasshi (pulp magazines) (カストリ雑誌) are apparently close synonyms of kudaranai zasshi. Hiwaina zasshi (obscene magazines) (卑猥な雑誌) and erozasshi (erotic magazines)(エロ雑誌) seem to include the lower grade pulps. If it is useful to correlate vocabulary, then kudaranai (下らない) broadly interpreted is probably the best Japanese equivalent of English 'pulp'.

The typical Japanese magazine uses two grades of pulp paper (zaragami) ざら紙, a common newsprint for feature articles, departments, serials, and most advertising, and a refined newsprint for black-and-white and color gravure (gurabiya) [sic = gurabia] グラビア and some advertising. Some magazines use a slick grade of paper (tsuyagami) (艶紙) for special gravure and higher grade advertising, but for present purposes it is sufficient to regard this third grade of paper as refined newsprint. Almost all covers are made of relatively heavy, slick paper.

The inside front and back covers and the outside back cover are invariably given to advertising, usually in color. Front cover illustration is commonly of a woman, regardless of readership. Chicness indicates vernacular type (Shūkan Asahi) (週刊朝日) whereas seductiveness indicates pulp type (Shūkan Taishū) (週刊大衆). Sophisticated, vernacular, and higher grade pulp magazines use furigana to resolve ambiguity when special readings of characters are intended. Lower grade pulp magazines are inclined to give furigana (振り仮名)for common readings, and some magazines are so heavy in furigana that little knowledge of characters is required to read them. (Note 5)

Structural indices that would help to grade Japanese pulp magazines are not readily forthcoming, but some suggest more than others. Japanese vernacular weeklies tend to be separable from pulp weeklies by their greater percentage of refined newsprint pages that are given to advertising. Refined newsprint pages that are allowed for gravure are usually reduced in number when they give in to nude or semi-nude display. Cosmetic surgery advertisements are more-or-less characteristic of middle grade popular magazines, or kudaranai zasshi The erozasshi types give a considerable amount of advertising space to outlets offering secret pictures (himitsu shashin) (秘密写真) and films, sex guide books, and erotic miscellany. Some caricature is found in practically all Japanese popular magazines, but is more frequent in some than in others, up to manga zasshi (comic books) (漫画雑誌). Manga zasshi of the type that are being examined here are inclined to be erozasshi.

Serialized novels (rensai shōsetsu) (連載小説) appear to characterize all but the manga zasshi and erozasshi. Serialization may inspire regular newsstand patronage, particularly at the train stations where magazine sales are high and transit time between stations permits the convenient reading of serial installments providing the reader has enough room to open the magazine. At the same time installments are short enough (average 4-6 pages) that the casual reader can follow one or two serials without ever buying a magazine by reading at the newsstand or borrowing from friends. Trading with friends is also a popular way to maximize reading but minimize expenditure.

Illustration density in the article sections manufactured out of common newsprint is not unlike that of American magazines like Time, Newsweek, or U.S. News and World Report, but resolution is comparatively low due to coarseness of the paper and because of economized technique. Quality of gravure is extremely high, equivalent to American gravure for a given quality of paper. American pulp magazines are inclined these days to incorporate gravure quality papers with common newsprint as their circulations increase and corresponding economic constraints permit. It can be assumed that a similar tendency is operative in Japanese magazines generally, sophisticated and popular.

It is at best difficult to specify reliable structural characteristics of Japanese pulp magazines. It is tempting to suggest that Japanese 'pulp' has more to do with earthiness of content than with any set of physical features, and even in this respect one may be on firmer ground simply to regard the whole lot of popular magazines as graded pulps rather than attempt some arbitrary division according to values implicit in American argot. Japanese are nevertheless inclined to rate the big-three newspaper weeklies and similar types in the vernacular range. In any case, the following tables are designed to summarily display the structural features of Japanese weeklies and to give some graphic indication as to how Japanese popular magazines might be graded.

Index numbers 19 and 20 are hi-teen (hai-tiin) (ハイティーン) type magazines, Numbers 21 and 22 are women's magazines and numbers 23 and 23 are men's magazines.

The figures under TYPE and CLASS in the grading table represent the number of Japanese out of seven examined who correlated the TYPE or CLASS nomenclature with the magazine. Several other terms were possible and some magazines were better known than others, so that the figures do not indicate popularity.

Of the seven examined, three (one man and two women) were college students, two (both men) were young high school graduates, and two were middle-aged housewives. The sample is in no sense conclusive but the survey does demonstrate a pattern that all other indications would verify. The figures towards the bottom of the TAISHŪ and MIDDLE columns are the contributions of the two housewives, who were inclined to grade higher than the other five examined. Also listed on the survey questionaire [sic = questionnaire] were Chūō Kōron (a monthly) (中央公論) and Asahi Jaanaru (Asahi [sic] Journal) (朝日ジャーナル), a weekly). Both of these sophisticated type magazines were designated sōgō zasshi (総合雑誌) and were rated high class. Several of the vernacular weeklies were also designated sōgō zasshi, particularly those of the big three newspaper publishers, but none of these were rated high class.

The structure table shows the per-hundred page representation of physical components in one issue of each of the 24 magazines surveyed. The representations will vary from issue to issue, and the figures arrived at may not be averages. Nevertheless the figures show tendencies that would emerge even considering a plus-or-minus variation of a magnitude the order of 20 percent. However, as pointed out in the preface, these tables are meant only to suggest, not quantify, the general manner in which Japanese pulp magazines are structured and graded.


Table 1

Grading of Japanese pulp magazines

Grading Table 1: Grading of Japanese Pulp Magazines
William Wetherall, "The Structure, Content, and Function of Japanese 'Pulp' Magazines"
Page 7 of 33-page report, Antropology 191, Winter Quarter 1969, George De Vos
Department of Anthropology, University of California, Berkeley


Table 2

Structure of Japanese pulp magazines

Structure Table 2: Structure of Japanese Pulp Magazines
William Wetherall, "The Structure, Content, and Function of Japanese 'Pulp' Magazines"
Page 8 of 33-page report, Antropology 191, Winter Quarter 1969, George De Vos
Department of Anthropology, University of California, Berkeley



The range of topics covered in Japanese pulp magazines is generally wider than in American counterparts. Both Japanese and American pulp magazines give more-or-less eqiiivalent space to expose, crime, romance, adventure, and confession, but it seems more common for Japanese pulps to give departmental status to sports, cinema, and night life. Japanese pulp magazines seemingly report wore about prostitution and promiscuity, and about homosexual and autocrotic practices particularly among women. There may be a tendency also for Japanese pulps to report more on 'foreign' events than American pulps report on European or Asian events.

Caricature in Japanese magazines is commonly of the comic strip rather than cartoon variety that frequents American counterparts, and generally there is more of it. Themes in Japanese pulp caricature range from the super erotic to the super grotesque. Occasionally political or social theses are embeded in some bizarre context that not all readers will fathom. This kind of double-layer phenomenon characterizes Manga Dokuhon (漫画読本). a monthly caricature-reader appealing to middle class Japanese males having ambivalent (sic = dual) interests in the serious and light, the humorous and grotesque, and satirical and sensual. Not unfrequently all of these qualities are fitted into a single formula, as in the following two-page caricature story about an American Soldier from Vietnam on Rest-and-Recreation leave in Japan.

Kiku no kasa Matsushita Ichio, "Kiku no kasa / Oh! Asia", Manga Dokuhon
September 1967 (Vol. 14, No. 9), pages 210-211, Yosha Bunko scan
  1. A Viet Cong is fording a stream somewhere in the jungles of Vietnam. The water is up to his waist. He is carrying his rifle across his shoulders behind his neck. He is wearing a conical sedge hat. (Note 6)
  2. An American soldier is hiding in the jungle at the edge of the stream. As though having expected the Viet Cong, he is smiling as he watches his enemy approach. His M-16 is ready.
  3. The American soldier is shooting the Viet Cong.
  4. The American soldier is watching the sedge hat floating downstream. He is still smiling.
  5. The American soldier is receiving a furlough from his commanding officer. The latter is smiling, but the former is jubilant.
  6. The soldier is leaning against the railing of a ship cruising for Japan. His view includes the coast of Honshu and Fujisan. A baloon reveals the contents of the soldier's mind: an Oriental woman who is wearing a smile above her low-cut dress. She is either a shimei (指名 "specified person"), in which case the soldier has been that route before, or she is Every-Japanese-Woman according to the mythology the soldier prefers to entertain. (Note 7)
  7. The soldier is approaching the 0tome baa (sic = Otome 乙女) [bar]. As though having expected someone, the woman is holding aside the noren (のれん) at the entrance, and is smiling as she watches her customer approach. Her body is ready.
  8. The soldier is in bed with the woman. It is suggested that he is sexually engaged with her but she is nonchalantly smoking a cigarette, apparently unexcitable by the scenery, having been that route too frequently. The soldier is looking out the window at the head of the bed. He sees a figure in a sedge hat bearing something across its shoulders behind its neck.
  9. The soldier is leaning out the window, firing a pistol at the figure.
  10. The soldier is standing outside, examining the figure at which he has fired several shots. The thing is still standing. It is a scarecrow, an Asian Strawman.
  11. In a field near that which the scarecrow was guarding, a young Japanese couple, in traditional rural attire, are lying dead, victims of stray bullets. A pair of geta (下駄) is on the ground beside the stricken woman. A sedge hat lies beside the man.

The title is itself a composite of two images. The second image is the Chinese character for umbrella, which is phonetically homonymous with the character for sedge hat (kasa) (傘). The first image is the mushroom cloud of a nuclear explosion. The composite could be read kaku no kasa (核の傘), which is a journalistic allusion to the Nuclear Umbrella feature of the Ampo (Anpo 安保) Mutual Security Agreement under which Japan is nominally protected by the United States against military aggression.

By phonetically homonymous I probably intended to stress the "phonetic" rather than "graphic" similarity of "kasa" (笠) referring to a conical sedge or a bamboo hat, and "kasa" (傘) meaning an umbrella or a parasol. They are pronounced the same way (homophones) but not written the same way (homographs). As spoken words, they are morphologically (semantically) the same in that both denote an object that protects the head from precipitation or sunlight. Different kinds of "kasa" are differentiated graphically. Linguistically, there is no confusion, as the different kinds of "kasa" are associated with different verbs. The "kasa" worn on the head is used with head-wear verbs. The "kasa" raised and held over the head is used with other verbs.

Ampo Mutual Security Agreement reflects my awareness at the time that "Ampo" (安保) was short for the long Japanese name for the Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security between Japan and the United States, which included the phrase "Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security between the United States and Japan, which included the phrase "Anzen Hoshō" (安全保障) meaning "safety assurance" or "security". The year I wrote this paper -- 1969 -- student demonstrations against the Vietnam War, and related campus and off-campus violence, were at their peak in both the United States and Japan. In Japan, slogans like "Ampo funsai" (安保粉砕) or "Destroy Ampo!" were used by anti-war groups in Japan when protesting the treaty, which allowed the United States to maintain military bases, hospitals, supply depots, and other military facilities in Japan, and to use such facilities to support the Vietnam War in the same way they had been used to support the Korean War.

Some grotesque humor might be found in the sedge hat fixation, and some anti-American reaction might be evoked by the American-male/Japanese-female bed scene. The politically sensitive might see Japan as an Ampo mistress being statutorily raped, or the sedge hat fixation as an American belief that all Asians look alike. It Is probably felt, in any case, that there are times when Japanese will be treated like other Asians, despite the Nuclear Umbrella.

So-called vegetable metaphors figure prominantly (sic = prominently) in Japanese phallic folklore, and are frequently used in erotic pulp caricature to suggest sexual mood. (Note 8) Among these are the matsutake (松茸 マツタケ) (mushroom, or phallus) and the momo (桃) (peach, or kteis). For example, in a take-off on mushrooming (matsutake-kari) (松茸狩り), limp mushrooms become erect when a mini-skirted maiden comes to gather them. (Note 9) In another caricature, a man is stroking the cleft of a peach with a calligraphy brush when the peach turns into a woman. (Note 10) The delta shape is used in baloons to indicate what occupies the male mind, corresponding to verbal allusions like harukusa (春草) (spring grass) and shigemi (茂み) (thicket). In one caricature a man opens his lunch box to find a delta shaped rice ball, a message from his wife.

Delta   Rice balls are typically round or rectangular. The humor in the above manga hinges on the orientation of a rectangular rice ball. Ordinarily it would be presented with the base down. In the lunch it was presented with the base up and the apex down -- hence its appearance.

Scatological expressions are significant in Japanese humor and abound in pulp caricature. (Note 11) Urination in a gutter or against a wall, not an uncommon practice particularly of drunks, may mean "am having a good time and don't give a damn". Flatulation may symbolize a "go to hell" attitude in response to an order or insult. But urination and flatulation not unfrequently signify nothing more than humor in the acts themselves. There is a scene in The Honorable Picnic that succinctly portrays the Japanese attitude towards these and other biological functions. (Note 12)

    After nursing him, I held Taro-San at the window while he did his little duty, and then I let the two little girls play with him for a minute before I dressed him. That was amusing to me but not to Taro-San, who began to cry. So I told the little girls that when Taro-San was bigger and if he liked, I would let them play together in a more satisfactory fashion. A simple joke to be sure, but very merrily received. The little girls did not understand, they were too young. But we women burst out laughing and the mother and the grandmother in particular.

It is somewhat in this vein that Japanese readers of a recent issue of Shūkan Asahi 週刊朝日 could appreciate a two page gravure showing a small boy with his shorts down piddling in a huge fountain in front of a new government office building. (Note 13)

Advertising display in Japanese pulp magazines is generally similar to that in American counterparts, but some differences are notable. The most dramatic of these differences is perhaps the appearance in Japanese pulp magazines of advertisements for medical clinics that perform cosmetic surgery and treat venereal disease. A curious feature of Japanese erozasshi (エロ雑誌) is the frequency of display that advertises erotic gaijinmono (外人物)secret pictures, that is, erotic photographs and films of Caucasian models, and American and European figure magazines. Related to this is the frequency of nude or semi-nude Caucasian models in gravure display of Japanese pulp magazines generally.

Books and magazines are more widely advertized (sic = advertised) in Japanese than in American mass media, and this holds generally true for popular magazines. Upper grade pulp magazines advertise particularly novels and other magazines published by the same company. Also advertized (sic = advertised) in these magazines are books having titles like '100 Varieties of Domestic and part-time Work' (naishoku 内職, arubaito アルバイト, and mēru ōdā メールオーダー). 'A Guide to Complete Marriage', and 'How to Win at Pachinko'. Book and magazine advertising in lower grade Japanese pulp magazines gravitate towards the erotic, and here it can be said that corresponding American magazines are similar. At this level are found advertisements emphasizing technique of the bedroom variety, having titles ranging from the conventional 'Techniques of Sexual Love' to the more bizarre 'Petting Reader'. (Note 14)

As mentioned before, many of the secret pictures and films advertised in lower grade Japanese pulp magazines are of gaijinmono, meaning that they are of Caucasian models, unless specifically Kokujinmono 黒人物), in which case they are of Negro models, rarely but occasionally seen in Japanese pulp magazines. (Note 15) Some of these products are Western imports, but others are of Japanese manufacture. A number of these magazines also review current American pulp magazines, and some advertise American and European nude gravure magazines, for sale through Japanese outlets. For the connoisseur (aikōsha (愛好者) or nihonjinmono, (sic = Nihonjinmono) (日本人物)there are in addition to the routine materials bizarre photographs featuring homosexual and scatological activities, and also grotesque or sado-masochistic photographs commonly of nude or semi-nude models roped to pieces of furniture or otherwise being subjected to some form of torture. (Note 16)

Medical cards (igaku kaado 医学カード)) are widely advertised in Japanese pulp magazines, sometimes reviewed in articles, and not unfrequently (sic = infrequently) a subject of caricature humor. These are typically a set of 48 cards showing as many positions for sexual intercourse on one side and contrasting the advantages and disadvantages of the positions on the other. Usually only the woman's position is shown posed by a professional model wearing dancing tights or similar clothing. The quality of the sets varies considerably in terms of photographic composition and verbal description. Sets advertised in magazines are generally 'tasteful1' or 'respectable' but in the pornographic underworld only the imagination of the photographer and the willingness of his model, neither of which quality is reportedly lacking, are said to determine the low limits. Some of the advertised sets are well known for their quality, and it [is] not uncommon for a newly married couple to receive of one of these sets as a wedding gift from an anonymous friend. This practice is a continuation of the custom in which appropriately executed shunga ukiyoe served the same purpose.

Ukiyoe (浮世絵) reproductions, particularly of the shunga (春画) (spring pictures), are advertised in a number of pulp magazines. Several symbolic features of these shunga continue to function in erotic pulp caricature. For example, the success of an amorous act portrayed in a shunga was indicated by the number of paper handkerchiefs (hanagami 鼻紙) shown attending it. (Note 17) One way of signifying the climax of a love scene in erotic caricature is to show a baloon (sic = balloon) in which a request is for 'paper'. The intensity of the climax is suggested by a request for more 'paper'. Pulp stories having ukiyo (浮世) themes, and they are numerous, are commonly illustrated in modern technique using traditional symbols suggesting sexuality, for example the small mouth and curly hair, and the partly untied obi (帯).

Homosexual indulgence was one of the sanctioned pleasures of priests and samurai before the practice was outlawed during Meiji. (Note 18) Male homosexuality is still strong in Japan but rarely appears as a theme in pulp magazines. On the otherhand [sic = other hand], lesbianism is a common theme in pulp literature and caricature. (Note 19) Autoeroticism (onanī オナニー) has been a traditional relief measure for hysteria (hisuterī ヒステリー) in women, and several implements, natural and manmade (sic = man made), are famous for the pleasures they can be made to induce. For the modern woman that is so inclined, appropriately shaped battery operated vibrators (jidō anmaki 児童按摩器) are advertised in several pulp magazines for about 1500 yen. (Note 20)

Advertising practices in Japanese popular magazines do not for certain sustain the myth that Japanese are more hypochondriacal than Americans, but nevertheless some pharmaceutical advertisements are interesting. (Note 21) A number of these advertisements expound the wonders of all sorts of sign and symptom relievers, hormone concoctions, vitamin concentrates, motion sickness pills, contraceptive creams and condoms, and various panacean miscellany. One pulp magazine advertisement in particular epitomizes the panacean miscellany. (Note 22) It describes what must be the most appropriate pill in the world for the super man. Its ten advertised ingredients are extracts of various plants and animals, including the Korean carrot (Chōsen ningen (sic = Chōsen ninjin) 朝鮮人参), the viper (mamushi マムシ、蝮), and musk deer (jajōjika (sic = jakōjika) ジャコウジカ、麝香鹿). Among the nearly thiry (sic = thirty) maladies it claims to relieve if not outright cure are decline in sexual desire (seiyoku teika 性欲低下), neuralgia (shinkeitsū 神経痛), insomnia (fuminshō 不眠症), loss of appetite (shokuyoku fushin 食欲不振), loss of energy (seiryoku gentai 精力減退), ringing in the ears (miminari 耳鳴り), impotency (bokkiryoku gentai 勃起力減退), alcohol and nicotine, etc. poisoning (arukouru, nikochin nado chūdoku アルコール、ニコチンなど中毒), eyestrain (tsukareme 疲れ目), liver difficulties (kanzō shōgai 肝臓障害), arteriosclerosis (dōmyaku kōka 動脈硬化), rheumatism (ryūmachi リューマチ), and up to sixteen others, depending on the version. The pill is Tengū Jūōsei (sic = Tengu Jūōsei) (天狗十王精). Tengū (sic = Tengu) is a long nose goblin, by extension a conceited person. (十) is ten, ō (王) is king, and sei (精) is something like vitality. At the risk of exceeding the semantic value of Tengū Jūōsei (sic = Tengu Jūōsei) with the understanding that Tengū (sic = Tengu)is more like a tradename (sic = trade name) while Jūōsei refers to traditional medicinal ingredients, it can be interpreted to mean that taking the pills will give one the manly vigor of a king and reason therefore to be proud.

Other advertisements claim ways to reduce or increase weight, improve muscle tone or figure, trim calves or thighs or enlarge the chest or breasts, or remove hair or stimulate its growth, by special exercises or with the help of patented devices or medicines. One full page advertisement that appears regularly in several low grade pulp magazines features do-it-yourself techniques to increase masculinity by enlarging or in some other bizarre way enhancing the male organ. Another advertisement tells in two pages of a medicine that would make the reader as tall as a Japanese-American (Beikoku umare no Nihonjin Nisei to hodo onaji taii ni nareru! 米国生まれの日本人二世とほど同じ体位になれる!). (Note 23)

Japanese pulp magazines are particularly unique for cosmetic surgery advertisements that appeal to readers dissatisfied with their natural eyelids, nose, lips, skin, breasts, or reproductive organs. Many of the clinics that offer plastic services list among their capabilities EENT, dermatology, gynecology, urology, and even dentistry, and not a few list circumcision and treatment of venereal disease. Many actresses and models, and some actors, have their eyelids modified from the single-fold variety (hitoe-mabuta) to the double-fold variety (futae-mabuta 二重瞼). (Note 24) Japanese who feel self-conscious about unusually swollen or unsymmetrical eyelids can have them reduced or balanced by surgery. Saddle noses can be built up higher and aquiline noses can be straightened. Thick lips can be made thinner, and breasts can be lifted. Among the more bizarre operations available is one that reportedly reconstructs a ruptured hymen. It is difficult to estimate how many plastic operations are performed, but it is presumable that their popularity is much less than the frequency of pertinent advertising might indicate. Nevertheless these advertisements symbolize a deviency (sic = deviancy) in Japanese racial identity that deserves to be understood.



Beauty paradigms function psychodynamically by specifying tolerances and sensitivities that determine feature acceptibilities (sic = acceptabilities) , and by conditioning graded reactions to feature variations, not unlike the way that quality control criteria function in manufacturing. Features that feature in beauty paradigms range literally from head to toe, but commonly included in the inventory are features like [Beauty paradigms range literally from head to toe, but they commonly include features like] skin, eyes, nose, ears, lips, teeth, and hair, valued in terms of size, shape, quantity, texture, and color. Different paradigms may emphasize different features of the common inventory, or may emphasize similar features but value different qualities about them, and in either case may be attended by different fetishes.

Differences in beauty paradigms function interculturally by promoting or retarding the diffusion of standards according to how emphasis and value configurations fit together, not unlike the way that specificities determined by configurations of molecular topology and distribution[s] of charge function in genetics. Emphatic differences are apt to promote diffusion of standards, whereas value differences are apt to retard diffusion. For example, a culture valuing the same skin color but attributing less importance to the fact of skin color can easily attribute more importance to the fact of skin color. On the otherhand (sic = other hand), a culture valuing a different skin color but attributing similar importance to the fact of skin color cannot easily value another skin color.

The high social premium that modern cultures place on physical appeal, and the beauty paradigms according to which appeal Is determined, are among the significant effects of mass media. (Note 25) Furthermore, it is mainly through mass media that a paradigm of beauty practiced by one culture is introduced into another. Some forms of mass media are more efficient than others for this purpose, particularly films and television, and popular magazines that feature gravure, fashion display, and cosmetic advertising. Vernacular and upper grade pulp magazines cover the common inventory of features in beauty paradigms, whereas lower grade pulp magazines are inclined to service the attending fetishes.

Caucasion (sic = Caucasian) models are featured in Japanese nude gravure with such frequency that some explanation is needed. Large breasts but also blonde and red hair seem to be the main fetishes. Caucasion (sic = Caucasian) models in Japanese nude gravure commonly evoke strong 'dimensional' reactions (Maa sugoi! マー凄い!) from both male and female Japanese viewers. Oriental models are comparatively rare in American figure displays and then they are chosen for their 'exotic' rather than 'dimensional' appeal. Eurasian models are common in Japanese fashion display, and most mannequins in Japanese department stores exhibit ambiguous Eurasian features.

Black hair (kurokami 黒髪) is particularly prized in the Japanese beauty paradigm, but blonde (burondo ブロンド) and red hair, so regularly featured and so conspicuously associated with sexuality in American films, are inclined to be 'gravure' fetishes for Japanese. When Japanese children see a light blonde or bright red-headed foreigner for the first time, they are not uncommonly awestruck and stare at the mysterious gold in the black sea. On the otherhand, black hair is inclined to be 'exotic' to Americans, particularly that of Spanish and Orientals, but also of Greeks and Italians. The general attraction is one of black hair in combination with fair or slightly pigmented skin and dark eyes. These features are generally uncommon in America where the majority has lighter hair and eyes. Americans can easily accept extremes in hair color, blonde and black, since the middle range is so predominantly mixed. Light blonde and bright red are 'exciting' whereas jet black is 'exotic'. Japanese are extremely homogeneous in black hair and dark eyes. Blonde and red are therefore extremely 'exotic' for many Japanese, and medium browns stimulate only curiosity if not repulsion. Japanese have little propensity to accept medium color hair for their own people. Brownish hair with an otherwise Asian face symbolizes konketsuji (sic = konketsu) or mixed-blood, a condition that can evoke strong reactions in not a few Japanese. If it turns out that a mixed-blood [person] has black hair, so much less conspicuous is the person in the mainstream of Japanese society, and so much less a gaijin (外人) from the Japanese point of view, one that highly values racial 'purity'.

The increase in emphasis on breasts in the Japanese beauty paradigm has come almost spontaneously with the introduction of Western mass media. Men in particular are interested in large breasts, at least in what they would see if not in what they would partake of. Gaijinmono photographs and films and nude gravure featuring Caucasian models have already been mentioned. Another example of Japanese interest in Caucasian flesh is found in the Tokyo theaters where Caucasian strippers command premium pay for having little 'talent' but an ability to display their bodies to audiences of gawlking (sic = gawking) students, laborers, clerks, and salarymen, among others. The female breasts have traditionally been recognized by Japanese for their primary function, but their secondary and tertiary applications were appreciated rather quietly, without much pomp and even less shame, until the invasion of Western notions of beauty and eroticism, together with Victorianism. Nevertheless, Japanese women are inclined to accept their breasts as they are, but it is felt that many would increase the size of their breasts were an effective, non-surgical method available. (Note 26)

Leg shapes became important in Japan as Western skirts began to replace the kimono (着物), and are becoming more important today as mini-skirts and even micro-skirts are beginning to displace their longer predecessors. The traditional way of sitting has frequently been cited as the cause of so-called bandy leggedness, and not a few Japanese mothers take care to encourage their daughters not to sit for long periods of time in the traditional fashion, particularly when they are young. (Note 27) And unless one acclimates to this position when young, it will not likely be a comfortable or otherwise favorable position when older. Many advertisements in Japanese popular magazines feature nylon stockings designed to make the knees of Japanese Office Ladies (0-L) as attractive as possible. (Note 28)

The extreme to which some of the above mentioned features of the American beauty paradigm have managed to generate fetishes in the Japanese beauty paradigm is perhaps most dramatically exemplified by an article that appeared in a recent issue of Shūkan Manga Eesu entitled 'Made in Japan' blondes (Wasei burondo bijo no SEX seisaku shimasu) (sic = 'Indicating the sex policies of made-in-Japan blonde beauties' (Wasei burondo bijo no SEX seisaku shimesu 和製ブロンド美女の SEX 制作示す). (Note 29) The article describes a class of Japanese prostitues (sic = prostitutes) who reportedly undergo plastic surgery to 'Westernize' their eyes and noses and enlargen their breasts. In addition, these women receive a series of injections to lighten their skin color. are fitted for blue-tinted contact lenses, dye their hair blonde, including their body hair, acclimate themselves to Western food and furniture, and practice an English-Japanese lingo that would give them the appearance of a foreigner struggling to learn Japanese. So converted or compromised, these women are supposedly able to command high fees of Japanese gentlemen who wish to sample the rumored delights of a Caucasian female body. (Note 30) How factual these allegations are is less important than the mere 'presence' of such a mode of operation in the Japanese 'pulp' mind.

Gossip is circulated in all human societies by a spontaneous application of language in the vernacular complex. To greater or lesser degree all people talk about the doings of others and the goings on about town. Gossip differs from so-called higher forms of conversation only as some differentiation is made in reference to the sophistication of content. Intellectual discourse may range from what a colleague is doing in the laboratory to what is happening in the galaxies, but even this is talk about doings and goings on, and in its own context functions as gossip does in the mass media -- it communicates information that is thought to matter.

The general function of pulp magazines in popular culture is the circulation of information that somehow matters to the people that read these magazines. The scandal expose (sic = exposé) and crime reports, the adventure tales, confession stories, and all the other sensationalia, somehow figure in the cultural metabolism of the reader. Pulp magazines are as functional in socio-cybernetics as their slick or scholarly counterparts in perpetuating or changing basic cultural values in their respective realms. (Note 31)

In this sense mass media is an institutionalized form of gossip. The publishers, broadcasters, and producers are institutionalized sources and the public is an institutionalized receiver. The total culture provides feedback that keeps the mass media more-or-less efficient in economic terms, but the way that mass media functions in the total culture is determined by the responsive activity of public participation in the affairs about which the mass media reports.

Cybernetically speaking, responsive activity is a measure of a receiver's compulsion to do something as a necessary completion of the act of receiving information from a source. In the case of popular magazines, responsive activity is a measure of a reader's compulsion to want something or want to do something, to perhaps buy some brand of toothpaste or appliance, or go somewhere for some form of service or entertainment, as a necessary completion to the act of reading a magazine. (Note 32)

It is tempting to suggest that Japanese pulp magazines compel a greater activity than their American counterparts, in that the Japanese reader may find it easier than his American counterpart to get involved in the sort of activities that are reported to him. It is in this sense that Japanese pulp magazines might participate more than their American counterparts in the perpetuation of the sort of activities about which they report. The difference between Japanese and American 'pulp' activities might be that the Japanese 'pulp' activities are more institutionalized. To be sure, both Japanese and American pulp magazines expose scandal and report crime, and carry adventure tales and confession stories, but Japanese pulp magazines give considerable space to the deeply entrenched and to that extent highly organized floating world (ukiyo), a formidable sub-culture for which there is no equivalent in America. Moreover, it is in this floating world that scandal and crime commonly breed and about this world that adventure and confession commonly center.

The modern Japanese floating world is an entertainment complex that centers somewhat elliptically on the mizu shōbai or water trade. The world of the mizu shōbai (水商売) is one of tens of thousands of cabarets and bars employing hundreds of thousands of hostesses that tend to the liquid passions of millions of customers. It is the night world of Tōkyō and Nagoya and of hundreds of cities and towns from Sapporo to Fukuoka. The day world is a commercial one of department stores and small shops clustered around the train stations that service nearly every city and town in Japan. When night falls the back alleys light up and myriads of cabarets and bars ranging from closet-sized operations large enough for three or four customers and as many attendants to multi-story establishments employing a thousand hostesses.

In various ways organic to the mizu shōbai are the turkish (sic = Turkish) baths, date clubs, nude studios, gay bars, love inns, and coffee shops, with pan-ma (パンマ) (prostitue-masseurs) (sic = prostitute-masseurs), call girls, strippers, homosexuals, mamma-sans (sic = mama-sans), and waitresses. Touts sweep the streets and chinpira (チンピラ) (young punks) hang around the pachinko (パチンコ) parlors. Men come to the amusement areas on girl hunts, and some women come on man hunts. Most find what they come looking for, figuratively a form of escape from the narrow day world in a climate of fluid companionship that not unfrequently (sic = infrequently) transcends a simple game of money and sex.

Organized crime and the floating world have an almost symbiotic relationship, and the chinpira find the door to this way of life an easy one to open if it is not opened for them. Nor is becoming a chinpira as difficult as being born poor. Regardless of birth and community, most Japanese youth have opportunities to experience some aspect of the floating world. It is not an otherworld roped off by boulevards no self-respecting Japanese would cross. Rather it is a world that any young Japanese can read about in vernacular and pulp magazines and see the fringes and shadows of when going to school or shopping. De Vos describes the socio-cybernetic relationship between crime in the floating world and the public transportation system: (Note 33)

    Rather than being a delinquency pattern related to ethnic minorities living in transitional neighborhoods, the statistics on delinquency, in Tokyo at least, are related to the influence of the public transportation patterns, the flow of people through the city, and the development of large amusement-area complexes around each of the major transfer points in the traffic flow of the city.

    Many of the youth who have developed more or less delinquent identity patterns congregate in these amusement areas -- the residence areas whence they came are scattered throughout the city. These centers are readily reached by public transportation. As they become involved, youth tend to spend an increasingly large part of their lives in these amusement areas.

Suffice it to say that these are not American patterns. To be sure, syndicated crime in America is organized around night entertainment particularly in big urban complexes like Chicago apd in resort and gambling centers like Miami and Las Vegas, but if these American scenes are somehow organized within themselves, they are not highly organized in American culture. With the exception of old port cities like New York and Louisiana, and of newer ones like San Francisco, the American floating world is at best shallowly rooted in [the] post-Victorian decades of the late 19th century, whereas the Japanese floating world is deeply rooted in traditions that are centuries old. The American floating world is essentially lacking of a literature or art, and rarely functions in American folklore, but the Japanese floating world has a strong tradition in ukiyo-zōshi (浮世草子) and ukiyoe, and in drama, and is rather prominent in Japanese folklore. It is difficult to imagine with what similarly momentous tradition American pulp magazines could be considered extensions of, but a strong case could be made that Japanese pulp magazines are genetically related to the Japanese floating world, not that they are somehow offspring of ukiyo-zōshi, but rather organized forms of floating world gossip and vehicles for passions, most native but some foreign inspired, not a few of which can be serviced by the modern ukiyo.



American pulp magazines are sold in cigar stores, liquor stores, drug stores, and supermarkets. They are most commonly monthlies and are typically concerned with sensational happenings in comparatively private contexts. The arena in which scandal and crime are enacted in America is not highly integrated with other social institutions, and the reader of American pulp magazines cannot very easily become a gladiator. For example, the occasional prostitution reported in the American pulp press is commonly regarded as a social anomaly at odds with moral tradition. The reader will observe that the profession is still being practiced, but he will find little opportunity in the American scene to conveniently engage the services of a prostitute.

Japanese pulp magazines are sold at book stores, miscellaneous other shops, and at train stations. They are most commonly weeklies and are frequently concerned with life in or near the modern floating world. The reader of Japanese pulp magazines does not experience great difficulty in sampling the pleasures reported available at the amusement centers. If he is so inclined, it is a fairly routine matter to engage the services of a prostitute if not a willing hostess. Even if the reader does not wish to participate directly in the pulp world, there is at least a probability that the background of this world will seem historically familiar. If the gingerbread of the modern floating world is somewhat different from that of its Tokugawa predecessor, the modern roles are little changed from their Genroku prototypes.

Sexual fetishes entertained by American pulp magazines are almost wholly derived of Caucastan beauty paradigms. Very few of these magazines, high grade or low, service minority paradigms, and when they do the indulgence seems more in the vein of curiosity than fetish. In any case, American nude and semi-nude display does not feature minority paradigms to such an extent that the Caucasian American could be said to have a problem about racial identity. On the other hand, Japanese pulp magazines suggest that the Caucasian beauty paradigm has raised serious questions in the minds of not a few Japanese with regards to what is desireablc in physical features. The tensions between the Japanese and American paradigms have generated fetishes for the Japanese, some of which are simply amplifications of traditional eccentricities (large breasts and white skin), while others are entirely new for the Japanese and are inclined to be highly exotic (blonde hair).

All of these factors suggest that Japanese pulp magazines play a larger socio-cybernetic role in Japanese mass media than American pulp magazines do in American mass media. This role is characterized not by the frequency and level of sensationalism but rather by the way that peculiar forms of sensatitionalism activate readership participation in convenient institutions and stimulate racial self-consciousness. Activation of readership participation in the modern floating world merely continues a centuries-old tradition, but stimulation of racial self-consciousness poses a problem of acclimation to a heterogeneous world with which the old traditions seldom had to cope. From these observations at least two meaningful conclusions are possible, subject a more objective examination of Japanese pulp magazines in the context of Japanese popular culture. Barbarian religion has had little effect on Japanese sensuality, but Barbarian physique has challenged the definition of Japanese sexuality.


  1. Bakeless, John. MAGAZINE MAKING.
    Viking Fress, New York, 1931.

    This source, though dated, gives a viable account of magazine economics, most parameters about which can be assumed to control Japanese magazines.
    Random House, New York, 1967.
  3. Lantis, Margaret. VERNACULAR CULTURE.
    AMERICAN ANTHROPOLOGIST, Vol. 62, 2, April, 1960.
    p. 203.
  4. The usual procedure is to reduce yen values to dollar equivalents, which informs the American reader how well he could live in Japan but tells nothing about what the yen value means to the Japanese. On the basis that one-yen is the relative equivalent of one-cent, the American reader can feel the burden of cost that Japanese themselves must bear, rather than learn what only a tourist would need to know,
  5. Children's magazines also use furigana to help the young readers learn their Chinese characters. The furigana used in a number of low-grade pulp magazines is for the benefit of readers who have not learned their kanji (漢字).
  6. Matsunoshita (sic = Matsushita) Ichio. Crazy World Series.
    Manga Dokuhon. Vol. 14, No. 9, September 1967.
    Kabushiki Kaisha Bungeishunju, Tokyo.
    Pages 210-211.

    The caricature has 12 frames, including the title frame. There is no dialogue, so that only the caricature itself has been described.

    松下井知夫 (1910-1990)、漫画讀本、昭和四十二年九月号、第十四巻、第九号、東京'文藝春秋
  7. A shimei (指名) is a hostess that a customer regularly patronizes. In a large cabaret or turkish bath, a customer will be asked if he has a shimei before another hostess or masseur is assigned to him. Otome (乙女) means virgin. Noren (のれん) is the curtain that hangs in the entrance way of small shops and bars throughout Japan.

    In a Turkish bath, a "shimei" may also be a person a customer names or numbers after examining photographs in a book or on the wall, or at times from a line-up of seated or standing girls.
  8. Buckley, Edmund. Phallacism in Japan.
    Stone, Lee Alexander, M.D. The Story of Phallicism.
    Pascal Covici, Chicago, 1927.
    Vol. 1, pages 300, 306.

    Embree, John F. Suye Mura, A Japanese Village.
    Eniv. of Chicago Press, Chicago, 1939.
    Pages. 41, 180, 279

    Freud, Sigmund. A General Introduction to Psycho-Analysis
    Translated from the German by Joan Riviere.
    Liveright Publishing Corporation, New York, 1935.
    Pages 139, 147
  9. Shūkan manga eesu, Vol. 6, No. 25, Issue 131, 15 November 1968.
    Page 2
  10. Manga Sutoorii, Vol. 9, No. 8, Issue 192, 13 April 1968.
    Page 2
  11. La Barre, Weston. Some Observations on Character Structure in the Orient
    Silberman, Bernard S., Ed. Japanese Character and Culture
    University of Arizona Press, Tucson, 1962.
    Page 352.
  12. Raucat, Thomas. The Honorable Picnic
    Translated from the French by Leonard Cline.
    The Viking Press, New York, 1927.
    Page 178.
  13. SHUKAN ASAHI, Vol. 73, No. 45, Issue 2595. 25 Oct 68.
    pp. 8-9.
  14. Naishoku is work done in the home, and in this case would include mail order (mēru ōdā) work. Arubaito commonly refers to the part-time work of students, but in floating world argot more often means the extracurricular work of female clerks and secretaries in the bars and coffee houses, as hostesses and waitresses. The meaning here, however, is the more general one, simply 'part-time work'.
  15. The Japanese pulp press seldom features the Negro in articles, but when it does, the Black woman in particular is seen as a super-sexual being. The myth that a strain of 'African Wilderness' runs through the race is not lacking in popularity in Japan.

    My use of "the" reflects my own unquestioned acceptance, at the time I wrote this, of the practice of collective generalization that essentially reduced all individuals to the racial, national, or sexual "groups" to which they "belonged" as a matter of social "classification". Even after I became aware of this habit and its implications, it took me many years to reprogram my brain to the point that it reflexively rejects this practice.

    At the time I wrote this, "Negro" was the standard term in magazines like Ebony and Jet, which I occasionally read, and was still commonly used in other media, although it was quickly being replaced by other terms. This was at the height of the "Black Power" movement, which was prominent on and off campus in Berkeley, as well as in Oakland and other parts of the Bay Area, and elsewhere in California and the United States. In Japanese advertising at the time, "blacks" were mostly featured in "African "settings and costuming to suggest something "natural" or "innocent" or "primitive" within the human condition.
  16. Torture by binding the victim in various contorted positions was not uncommon in pre-Meiji Japan.
  17. Ihara Saikaku, THE LIFE OF AN AMOROUS WOMAN.
    Translated from the Japanese by Ivan Morris.
    New Directions, Connecticut, 1963.
    pp. 298 (note 39), 310 (note 434), 334 (note 336). 337 (notes 359, 360, 361).
    Meridian Books, The World Publishing Company, Cleveland, 1967.
    p. 187.
  19. Ibid. pp. 188, 284-5.
  20. Also called dendō anmaki. The onanī use of these vibrators is not explicitly advertised, but their common use for this purpose is indicated in articles that report about masturbation practices and in caricature that satirize the hysterical woman who resorts to a vibrator.
  21. La Barre, op. cit.
    p. 350.
    1.     Hypochondriasis is a very prominent ingredient in Japanese cultural life. The advertisements in Japanese magazines are sufficient evidence of this. Any claim, however extravagant or naive, finds credence if only it hits upon the deep-seated anxieties of the public.

    La Barre made this observation in 1945, but I don't think that a lingering Japanese propensity towards Chinese medicines should be associated with hypochondriasis at any time if this propensity is thought to be a 'naive exercise of deep-seated anxiety'. Certainly Americans are as highly susceptible to the irrational appeal of pharmaceutical advertising as the Japanese. Rather hypochondriasis must be measured by the extent that external affects are attributed to internal causes, and should not be measured by the extent that the efficacies of^traditional medicdnes are believed to be mythical according to so-called 'scientific' values. Advertisernents like the one I have described in some detail are curiosities to an American like myself who is not accustomed to seeing this sort of appeal, but I would hesitate to conclude that the presence of such ads signals hypochondriasis.
  22. Two versions of the advertisement were used here, from the following magazines:

    SHUKAN JITSUWA, Vol. 12, No. 1, Issue 526, 6 Jan 69.
    pp. 170-1.

    SHUKAN ASAHI GEINO, Issue 1126, 4 Feb 68.
    p. 73.
  23. SHUKAN MYOJO, Vol. 11, No. 3, Issue 496, 21 Jan 68.
    pp. 106-7.
    DAEDALUS, Spring 1967, COLOR AND RACE.
    p. 417.
  25. Mac Gregor, Frances Cooke, et. al. [sic = et al.] FACIAL DEFORMITIES AND PLASTIC SURGERY, A PSYCHOSOCIAL STUDY.
    Charles C. Thomas, Illinois, 1953.
    pp. 3, 64, 69.

    Mac Gregor is concerned with deformities resulting from accidents and congenital defects, but a large part of his analysis can apply as well to any physical characteristic that deviates from an established norm. He talks, for example, about feature stereotypes like the 'Jewish nose' and how in some instances this can generate interpsychic [sic = intrapsychic] tensions that can be resolved by plastic surgery.
  26. Japanese women with unusually large breasts are inclined to be self-conscious of the fact and do not necessarily regard their breasts as assets.

    Edited and Translated by Hidetoshi Katō.
    Charles E. Tuttle Company, Tokyo, 1959.
  27. Gorer, Geoffrey. THEMES IN JAPANESE CULTURE.
    Univ. of Arizona Press, Tucson, 1962.
    p. 312.

    Tanizaki Junichirō. THE KEY.
    Translated from the Japanese by Howard Hibbett.
    Alfred A. Knopf, New York, 1961.
    pp. 122-3.
  28. O-L (oo-eru) means Office Lady in modern Japanese parlance. It replaces the earlier B-G, which stood for Buisness Girl, although B-G is still used, particularly in lower grade magazines. Evidently B-Girl connotations [i.e., "bar girl"] began to encroach on the meaning originally intended for B-G, particularly as it is reported that a number of secretaries and clerks supplement their incomes as bar hostesses.
  29. SHUKAN EESU, op. cit.
    pp. 79-85.
  30. Tanizaki, in SOME PREFER NETTLES and A FOOL'S LOVE, features a Japanese male who has fetishes for Caucasian female features. The woman in the former is a Eurasian prostitute who lightens her skin with powder so as to mask the fact that she is Eurasian. The woman in the latter is actually Japanese but because of her features is mistaken for a konketsuji.

    At the time I wrote this, I was not sufficiently familiar with the Japanese texts. The earliest texts show graphs for 混血児 (konketsuji), meaning "mixed-blood child/person", with furigana for あいのこ (ainoko), meaning "inbetweener" or "hyrbrid". LInguistically, then the "word" was "ainoko" and its "meaning" was "konketsuji". In contexts of "Westerner" or "White", translations commonly anglicize both of these terms as "Eurasian", a different metaphor, which constitutes an "interpretation" rather than a "translation" of the these Japanese terms.

    Another note of interest here is the way that erotic caricature portrays women, usually with voluptuously exaggerated figures. More often than not the faces are totally Caucasian, with large eyes and light hair (in black and white to indicate blonde). Large eyes are somewhat characteristic of Japanese caricature generally, and are routinely employed in children's comics.
  31. Cybernetics means 'control', 'comunication', and 'information'. It is convenient in content analysis to use a cybenetic metaphor when talking about the function of mass media in culture and society, hence the terms SOURCE, RECEIVER, RESPONSE, ACTIVITY, and FEEDBACK, and finally the term SOCI0-CYBERNETICS. The term has been applied later on in the paper to the description that De Vos gives of the Japanese transportation system as an agent in Japanese delinquency patterns.
  32. Jarrell, Randall. A SAD HEART AT THE SUPERMARKET.
    p. 361.
    1.     When one finishes (reading a popular magazine)[,] buying something (or) going somewhere seems a necessary completion to (the) act of reading the magazine.
    Aldine Publishing Company, Chicago, 1962. p.156.