beithsidhe comments

Posted in: Tokyo Girls Collection 2008 A/W See in context

"Tokyo Girls Collection"?? LOL are they all on their way out to a bullpen out the back to be sold off to slavers?

I assume since it's been fashion week it has something to do with clothes for underage female humans but wow put either AW or the word fashion or a designer's name or even a shop's name between the words 'girls' and 'collection' if it's going to be used in English lol!

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Posted in: I think many Japanese women feel that they can never live up to the refined beauty that they feel Western women strive for. So, instead, they shoot for a cute look, one that doesn’t require tall, curv See in context

It is possible to be womanly and not obese and also girlish and obese - this has nothing to do with obesity, it has to do with girlish cuteness versus womanly elegance - neither of which are exclusive of any country. The designer is talking about body shape and the style adopted, not body size.

Frankly, DanManjt you prove the point that there are men whose idea of what is feminine is severely twisted if you automatically assume that anyone who is larger than a perfect example of kawai is obese. Clearly, those who hold this attitude believe that once a woman (including Japanese women) is fully grown and/or not wearing clothing to titilate men then she is no longer feminine. There is a looong way between a perfectly kawai girl and obesity which is a medical definition not just anyone's idea of "too fat" for them to be aroused by.

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Posted in: I think many Japanese women feel that they can never live up to the refined beauty that they feel Western women strive for. So, instead, they shoot for a cute look, one that doesn’t require tall, curv See in context

Perhaps what ExPrinceska needed to do was begin her post with the word "many" - of course it is not all men, nor even all Japanese men. Many men, like theneworder66 and my own husband, prefer grown women with strong personalities and opinions but, like most fashions, the "kawai" fashion would not have taken hold so completely if it had not had the "patronage" of many, many more men with the opposite view. The desire for partnership and to be acknowledged as beautiful is something even the strongest of women desire (and most teens to early adulthood women are not at their strongest) and to deny that fashions that men don't like die a fast death and vice-versa is simply to deny reality.

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Posted in: I think many Japanese women feel that they can never live up to the refined beauty that they feel Western women strive for. So, instead, they shoot for a cute look, one that doesn’t require tall, curv See in context

The ideals are different, but it is not as if cuteness is some sort of second best.

While I agree that the ideals of "kawai" are not second best to "western" beauty ideals (*see note below), this infantilism is definitely not a benign fashion phase. Leaving aside (solely because it is often discussed) the dangerous issue of equating childhood with "sexy", at its heart the ideals (I would argue purpose) of "kawai" are to make a woman harmless or declare her worthless. "Kawai" directly undermines the ability for a woman to be both attractive and taken seriously - in other words: it is the perfect antidote to feminism in a society which has not yet come to terms with it.

"Elegance" has its fashions too, of course, but in any era or society, whatever the fashion specifics "elegance" is a beauty which expresses a woman's personal strength - one cannot express one's personal power or accomplishments while being "kawai". At this point I'm sure many would point to the sexual "power" that "kawai" girls have but the manipulation of the sexually feeble is a poor substitute for true self determination.

*Note: This trend toward "cute" and therefore harmless is not lost on western women, by the way. For a long time, now, the main-stream fashion trends have been toward having a tiny, hairless, curve-less, childish figure. The "curvaceous" beauty ideal is long gone from western society outside the pornography or pageant industries.

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Posted in: What do you think is causing the recent spate of random stabbings in Japan and how can society address the problem? See in context

I haven't lived in Japan long but I have noticed how absolutely prescribed life is here and I wonder if this is part (and only part) of the problem.

I don't simply mean people reacting adversely to being so controlled (clearly that is not an issue with most Japanese) but rather that if everything you are supposed to do every day is structured for you (to the point as even as a professional, white collar, adult your lunch hours are regulated by bells) you simply never learn to regulate your own behaviour. Thus, when it occurs to you that you could kill someone with a knife (and that strikes you as either a solution to a problem or just something interesting to do) and there is nothing specifically regulating you in the moment not to do it then it is likely you will do it.

The answer is not more social regulation from without (which can never be sure of addressing every situation and, history show, will eventually cause rebellion) but to teach people to honour others equally with themselves so that there is an internal regulator which stops such crimes.

In other words, despite getting there in a different way, exactly the same thing that needs to be taught in countries with higher crime rates, too.

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