Youth and Sexuality in Anime and Manga

In what has been an issue of contention in both Japan and the western world, the matter of sexualisation of young girls in the mediums of anime and manga is coming to the fore more than any time before. Especially in the light of new child pornography laws which were implemented last year, banning outright the possession of any pornographic material with underage youths involved. Many have wondered as to why anime and manga were excluded from such sweeping legislation. Over the past decades both mediums have expanded tremendously in a multitude of avenues. This would also include a vast increase in the number of titles in with youth are overly sexualised and/or placed in borderline pornographic situations.

Do anime and manga differ from other mediums due to their animated or illustrated means and thus should be excluded from notions of juvenile pornography? And if so why? The core issue to address in all of this is whether or not there is a significant set reasons to justify the exclusion of anime and manga from such notions. What aspects of the cultures of Japan, anime and manga have to play in all of this if any?

  • This is a great contradiction to address, much like how in western society it's more acceptable to glamorize violence than say, smoking. There's isn't a justifiable argument why we allow hentai over regular porn to display juveniles, and yet people stick by the decision. The only thing I can think of is that some people sleep better at night because like at the end of some movies they imagine the heading "no real people were hurt in the making of this"... but it's glamorizing it all the same! – Slaidey 8 years ago
  • Sexualizing is sexualizing, no matter if it is a drawing or live-action pornography. Explicit comics such as Tijuana bibles and artwork have always existed and were never seen as suitable for children or a youth demographic so logically, anime and manga should be no exception even if they are only animated and illustrated. On the other hand though, the fact that anime in particular is often mixed with children's cartoons despite some titles being labeled as hentai in Japan would surely be the cause of confusion in Western countries since animation is more familiar as a children's medium along with that "no real people were involved." Therefore, there is also a case of cultural differences at play since there have been many cases where parents buy an anime title for their children just because it's animated only to discover there is sexual content. – dsoumilas 8 years ago

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