Japan Times last Sunday, April 29, 2007:
Japan's love affairs with sex
By MICHAEL HOFFMAN
Special to The Japan Times
Michael Hoffman delves deep into the carnal history of these islands from the Age of the Gods to the lovelands and soaplands of today
The logical conclusion upon reading Michal Hoffman's "deep delving" into past and present Japanese sexual moral history is that he is in the wrong place, at the wrong time, writing a wrong analisys in the wrong newspaper, intended for the wrong audience.
The right place for Mr Hoffman is somwhere in the US bible-belt, the right time about the discovery of America, and the right audience The Church of Christ Historical Society . As for the right newspaper he could write for Boston Pilot, Christian Mirror, Waterville Intelligencer, Watchman-Examiner, Zion's Advocate or the Zion's Herald (which still exists).
When it comes to analizing and understanding sexuality in non-christian and spiritualy free, "non-syphilized" (sorry "non-civilized") cultures all Mr. Hoffman have to do is look into classic Greek-Roman-Etrusc mythology and find the world of Eros, Aphrodite, Zeus (he married his sister Hera, but had many affairs and children with many other women, both goddesses and mortals) very similar to Japanese and pre-christian Nordic mythologty. ( Thor, Odin, Freja -sexual relationship with her brother Freyr in Lokasenna). Zeus by the way was son of Kronos a Titan, son of Gaia and Uranos. Kronos children with his sister Rhea besides Zeus are Demeter, Hades, Hera, Hestia, and Poseidon all of them having a very exiting, creative sexual life.
Mr. Hoffman, goes on describing Edo-Meiji-Showa- sexual life and " lewed behaviour " in Japan and with the help of Janet Goodwin, Richard Bowring, James Murdoch, William Lindsey, Theodore de Bary, Sheldon Garon, John Stevens tries to navigate the reader thru Japanese law permitted the sale of women and children into prostitution, licensed prostitutes peaked in 1916 at 54,049, shocked Western observers of Japanese sexuality, Yonosuke by the age of 54 had slept with 3,742 women and 725 men and......his boat stocked with "20 crates of Women Delighter Pills, . . . 250 pairs of metal masturbation balls for women, . . . 600 latticed penis attachments, 2,550 water-buffalo-horn dildos, . . . 200 erotic prints . . . " to some sort of conclusion that suspiciusly reminds one of the legendary Sodom and Gomorrah.
Smoothly arriving at Heisei Mr. Hoffmans moral-biblical index-finger grows even bigger and he laments:
liberated at last from the crushing poverty that once drove parents to sell their daughters to the licensed quarters, what was to prevent sex from recovering its innocence and becoming what it so rarely is -- simple, healthy, natural, loving and happy?
It was not to be. Prostitution for survival has given way to prostitution for brand-name fashion accessories. Pleasure quarters have yielded to garish love hotels and fuzoku -- the modern erotic-entertainment network of host clubs, hostess clubs, imekura image clubs, terekura telephone clubs, kyabakura cabaret clubs, "delivery health" call-girl services, lovelands, soaplands, Internet virtual-sex sites, Internet deaikei encounter sites, and so on and so on -- an endless array of game-center-like "sexy services" whose combined annual turnover, the biweekly magazine Dacapo estimates, is 2.3 trillion yen. Perhaps when official and corporate Japan accords women their due respect as professionals, commercial sex will cease to draw them with remuneration an "office lady" can only dream if.
He does not like that 30 percent of junior high school students have had a sexual experience by the time they graduate" at age 15. and he disapprove that34.6 percent of married couples have not had sex in at least a month and that 55.2 percent of married couples over 40 as "sexless" -- meaning they engage in sexual relations less frequently than once a month.
Based on Mr. Hoffman's writings it is difficult to identify his exact ambitions. He seems to aspire to be a baptist missionary, history professor, english teacher turned japan-watcher, women-rights crusader, and gender-equality income labour-union official all rolled into one. His sunday-school universe seems to consist of refraining from sex until marriage, strict monogamous "until death us part" Hollywood illusions and generally postponing sexual activity until age 50 and beyond. Only hypocrisy hinders him in going a step further, demanding the Japanese illegalize love-hotels, mobile-phone- and internet dating and of course call-girl services as well as soaplands. Who knows? May be he would like to introduce some Iran-like dress code to Dogenzaka and Shibuya enforced by uniformed christian/islamic MGA (Moral Guarding Angels). Additionally he may feel Japan should liberalize the gun law, forbid sexual activity until age 21 so the high school students can shoot each other instead of fornicating.
Yes Mikey, you are definitely in the wrong place at the wrong time. You should consider a radical change. In case your mental puberty hinders that you can get a job at some gospel-radio or Louisiana puritan christian weekly, you may consider moving to Teheran getting a job in the islamic moral street-patrol. Checking under the khimar, hijab, abaya, jilbab could be fun for you. You could then write a book say "Secrets of the Khimar!" and you may even get published and read by the christians back home. The rednecks in Mississippi and yellowhammers in Birmingham will be able to say: It's much worse in Iran.
by Gabor Fabricius
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