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Confessions of a Frigid Man
A Philosopher’s Journey into the Hidden Layers of Men’s Sexuality (2005, 2013, 2017 Tokyo Philosophy Project)

Masahiro Morioka

> General information about this book

(Foreword Preface Ch.1 Ch.2 Ch.3 Ch.4 Ch.5 Epilogue)

Confessions of a Frigid Man: A Philosopher’s Journey into the Hidden Layers of Men’s Sexuality

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Chapter 4
Delving into the Psychology of Men with “Lolita Complexes”

Section 1: Japan, a great “lolicon” power

1. Japan, a great “lolicon” power

Japan has become a “leading nation” when it comes to lolicon. This country has long been known internationally for its production of pornography featuring young girls. But pornography is not what I want to talk about here. Mainstream television and other media are full of instances in which young girls are viewed sexually to such an extent that the current state of affairs seems to me quite bizarre. Yukiko Hayami has identified lolicon as the “national illness” of Japan (Men Who Cannot Love [Ren’ai Dekinai Otokotachi], Daiwashobō, 2002, p. 40).

In this chapter I will examine lolicon, but this is a problem that is very difficult to discuss. Feminism views lolicon as an illness of adult men. This is of course not incorrect, but in fact it is not only men who are sexually attracted to pretty young girls; I am personally acquainted with adult women who are sexually attracted to beautiful young girls, and it is a well-known fact that young female entertainers acquire many adult women as fans. One young woman told me that other women look at her with sexual interest. Young girls seem to be the sexual targets of both men and women.

It may be assumed, however, that there are significant differences between cases in which men are sexually attracted to young girls and cases in which women feel this kind of attraction. Putting aside these differences as a topic for future inquiry, here I would like to begin by examining, with myself as an example, what occurs in the minds of men like me when they are attracted to young girls.

2 “I” understand how men with lolicon feel

In this book I am attempting to look deep inside myself and examine my own internal sexuality. By dispassionately analyzing what goes on inside myself, I hope to contribute to the elucidation of male sexuality.

When it comes to the topic of lolicon, however, this examination of my own internal sexuality is extremely difficult and painful, because in order to pursue it I must publically acknowledge that I understand lolicon, or, in other words, that I have experienced sexual attraction to young girls. I will discuss this in more detail later on, but I must begin by admitting that I have experienced erotic feelings towards still-innocent young girls around the age of twelve. I am also a professor at a university. For someone even slightly connected to education to openly declare that he is sexually attracted to young girls is one of this society’s greatest taboos.

But this is something I want to publicly admit. I understand the feeling of lolicon. Without acknowledging this, it would be impossible to elucidate lolicon’s internal psychological aspects. Of course, I have never actually engaged in sexual relations with a young girl or attempted to do so. But I cannot avoid acknowledging the fact that, however slight, this kind of sexual interest exists within me.

As I mentioned in Chapter 3, one of the professions that makes it hardest to publicly admit this kind of thing is that of a “teacher” at a school. Even if this kind of sexual interest in young girls exists within a teacher, at school he must act as if it does not, and he cannot discuss it even when he goes drinking with friends. These men’s lolicon swells under this pressure and may eventually erupt in the form of sexual behaviors like peeping or prostitution involving young girls. Of course, I have no desire to defend the men who commit these sorts of crimes. Individuals working in the field of education must indeed hold themselves to a higher moral standard in this regard.

If so, should we then say that “teachers” must not feel sexual attraction to young girls? Or that if they do have such feelings they must bury them deep inside themselves and never discuss them openly with other people? I myself do not have a definite answer, but sometimes I think that our response to these questions must simply be “yes.” But before arriving at this conclusion, I would like to thoroughly clarify the essential nature of the lolicon that existed within me. I would also like you to ask yourself whether there is not even a slight sexual attraction to young girls (or cute young boys) within you, and carefully examine whether you are being entirely truthful when you say “I find them cute but I am not sexually attracted to them at all.”

3 Girls harmed by lolicon men

Here I must note that there are many young girls who are sexually harmed by men with lolicon. There is an extremely large number of women who have painful memories of being molested by strangers or groped on the train when they were young, or who were repeatedly sexually abused by their fathers or other family members. The harm done to these women is indeed great. Detailed accounts of individual cases can be found in the excellent reportage of Takako Yoshida (See Children and Sexual Harm [Kodomo to Seihigai], Shūeisha Shinso, 2001).

As it is difficult to talk about this kind of incident with other people, there are presumably many women who have kept this damage they received as children to themselves and continue to carry it long after they have become adults. Some of the readers of this book may be women who have had this kind of experience, and others may have such individuals among their acquaintances. What will these women think when they read this chapter? Other readers may have a family member who was the victim of abduction by a lolicon criminal. When I imagine these sorts of readers I am reluctant to continue writing this chapter.

But in the end I keep going, because I think that in order to reduce these crimes it is necessary for us to better understand what is happening in the minds of men with these tendencies and how the mechanisms that give rise to these sexual crimes spread throughout society. For the sake of eliminating this kind of harm we must uncover, to the greatest extent possible, what lies buried in the minds of lolicon men. I do not want to conduct this investigation by harshly condemning these men from a distance while turning a blind eye to the susceptibility to lolicon I have within myself.

4 Dividing lolicon into two types

I would like to begin with a bit of clarification regarding the concept of lolicon. Lolicon is a mental state of being sexually attracted to young girls. The word is also used to refer to men who have this mental state (in this chapter I focus mainly on lolicon men).

Here I would like to divide lolicon men into two types. One type actually sexually abuses young girls or pays them for sex. There is nothing to stop us from describing these men as criminals who prey on actual young girls to satisfy their own physical desires. In Men in the Dark [Mænd i mørket] (Tiderne Skifter, 2003), Jacob Billing reports on the actual state of affairs regarding pedophiles in Denmark. I cannot in any sense support these individuals who tear apart the lives of real, flesh and blood children without compunction in order to satisfy their own desires. What I write in this chapter is in no way intended to defend these sorts of men.

The other type of lolicon men is those who feel sexually attracted to young girls but do not actually engage in sexual relations with them. This category includes men who collect photographs of young girls and videos of “idol bands.” Among such men, there are presumably those who are satisfied with consuming only images, those who refrain from engaging in sexual relations with young girls through rational self-control, and those who simply have not yet considered having sexual relations with an actual young girl. The chance that these men will at some point become criminals is of course not zero. There may indeed be this kind of “reserve corps” of sex criminals.

What I want to discuss in this chapter is mainly the second type of lolicon men. They cannot be called criminals, but it is because of them that the “loliconification” of society as a whole continues to progress. Such people may indeed be unimaginably numerous. They include the majority of men who like “idols” [“aidoru” in Japanese; cute young girls, mostly singers or actresses, who appear in various popular media including music, film and television]. I would not deny having belonged to this category myself. I hope that you too will reexamine what exactly your own feelings are as you read what follows. Research has been carried out concerning the psychology of people who commit sex crimes involving children, but up to now almost nothing has been said about this more general form of lolicon. I want to make this my objective here. With this end in mind, I will also discuss the psychology of criminals when necessary, as there is a great deal of overlap between what goes on in the minds of both of these types of lolicon men.

5 How old are the girls on whom lolicon men fixate?

So how old are the “young girls” I have been talking about? In his novel Lolita, Nabokov makes Lolita twelve years old. A website called “Moeeki” has put together a survey of the age distribution of young female anime and video game characters (characters who appear to be young girls). The results show five characters who are nine years old, nine who are ten, fifteen who are eleven, twelve who are twelve, nine who are thirteen, nine who are fourteen, and seven who are fifteen. It seems safe to conclude that popular characters of this type in Japan are mainly eleven and twelve years old, and the age range of girls who inspire lolicon is roughly ten to fourteen. This range extends from the fourth year of elementary school to the second year of junior high school.

It is very interesting to note that on average Japanese girls begin to menstruate at twelve years and a half of age. This almost perfectly fits the age range of girls who are the target of lolicon; lolicon men are fixated on girls who are just beginning to menstruate. In other words, these men could also be seen as impatiently waiting until girls are capable of bearing children. I would like to put this idea aside for now and return to it later.

Here I should note that men who are sexually attracted to girls (or boys) under the age of ten or so are often referred to as “pedophiles” and distinguished from lolicon men. Lolicon and pedophilia are completely different. I myself cannot imagine what kind of feelings or thoughts exist in the minds of pedophiles. I will therefore limit my discussion in this chapter to lolicon, something I can discuss based on my own experiences.

6 Why are they drawn to young girls?

I would like to note at the start that lolicon has been explained as being the result of immature men who cannot have romantic relationships with full grown women seeking to use young girls who are weak and obedient as sexual outlets. There are almost certainly some men who molest or sexually abuse young girls for this reason. This pattern may be especially prevalent in pedophiles who molest young girls who have just started elementary school.

At the same time, however, this does not seem an adequate explanation of the attraction to girls in junior high school or the upper years of elementary school. The teachers and school board employees arrested for buying sex from schoolgirls, for example, are often men who occupy a position of high social status and have families. These men bought sex with young girls while at the same time engaging in sexual relationships with adult women; they cannot be described as immature men who approach young girls because they cannot have a relationship with a full-grown woman.

In 2001, Tokyo High Court judge Yasuhiro Muraki was arrested for paying for sex with girls between the ages of fourteen and sixteen and sentenced to prison by the Tokyo District Court. Muraki was forty-three years old at the time. There is almost no position with a higher social standing than that of judge, and by the normal standards of society Muraki was a very successful man. A few years later, in 2004, a reasonably successful movie director named Akiyoshi Imazeki was arrested on suspicion of paying for sex with two girls aged twelve and fourteen and sentenced to prison by the Yokohama District Court. Why would Imazeki, who had produced a solid body of work as a film director, become involved in child prostitution? He is forty-four years old and therefore belongs to my generation. These men presumably sought out young girls because they were looking for something they could not find in adult women. We must try to clarify what this something is.

7 Is lolicon an “illness”?

The desire to gaze at and admire a pretty young girl you see in front of you is presumably a very normal emotion. However, lolicon men begin fantasizing about going on a date with her, becoming her lover, bringing her home, or making her their younger sister or daughter. As for how far these sorts of fantasies go, they eventually reach the point of wanting to touch the girl and ultimately ejaculate on her.

Put this way, most men would presumably say that lolicon is clearly an illness and something that has nothing to do with them. But what happens if you think about it in a different way? For example, imagine that an adult woman who is “your type” is standing in front of you dressed in a way you find attractive. Upon seeing her, you will presumably feel a spark of excitement and your heart will begin to beat a bit faster. Now imagine you are alone with her on a date. You have dinner, chat while staring into each other’s eyes, and go for a drink. It would not be strange for the idea that if possible you would like to have sex with her to begin to form in your mind. After dinner you take her for a ride in your car, and this is an implicit invitation. You may even want to take her somewhere right away if she doesn’t have any strong objection. You may have an erection at this point. An expectation of sexual intercourse and ejaculation begins to build in the mind of a man in this situation. There are surely few people who would criticize as an “illness” this kind of physical response in a man when it is directed toward an adult woman.

When a woman you find attractive appears in front of you and you notice this and your heart begins to beat faster, I think this is because in some corner of your mind you have a vague feeling that “I might have the chance to have sex with this woman and ejaculate, and it would be great if I could.” Even if you know that there is no way it could actually happen, a fleeting fantasy nevertheless crosses your mind. It is this vague feeling of anticipation that makes a man’s pulse quicken. But since the man is in a slightly excited state of mind, it is hard for him to be consciously aware of this psychological mechanism.

8 What lies at the bottom of the “feeling of excitement”

When a pretty young girl appears before the eyes of a lolicon man, or when he sees the image of a pretty young girl on TV, a DVD, or in a magazine, or even when he views a representation of a pretty young girl in manga, anime, or computer-generated animation, his pulse quickens and he experiences a “feeling of excitement” towards her just as described above. When a lolicon man feels this excitement, it is not as though he immediately gets an erection and wants to take the girl somewhere right away. This feeling of excitement fills his mind and he enters a slightly paralyzed, trance-like mental state; in nearly all cases this is all that occurs.

At the same time, however, when a man has this “feeling of excitement” towards a young girl, he begins to focus a thin, vaporous desire to have sex and ejaculate – a desire so indistinct he himself may not be consciously aware of it – on the young girl in question. This is exactly the same mechanism that operates when a man is attracted to an adult woman. Of course, there are presumably very few men who actually carry out these sorts of acts. But a man may have a vague sense of anticipation in the back of his mind even if he would never actually engage in these sorts of actions. This is the essence of the sexual gaze directed towards young girls.

Lolicon men are men who experience this “feeling of excitement” toward young girls or images of young girls. And I think that at the bottom of this “feeling of excitement” there is a hidden desire, not easily perceived even by the man in question himself, for sexual intercourse and ejaculation. If we redefine “lolicon” in this way, we cannot help but conclude that a truly enormous number of adult Japanese men are in some sense affected by this condition; Japanese mass media, including TV and magazines, skillfully portray young girls in a sexual light, and we are unknowingly being refashioned into people with the mental disposition to take pleasure in viewing them in this way.


Section 2: Adults Who Skillfully Package “Young Girls”

9 The “young girls filled with sexual desire” message

Nationally renowned idol groups such as Morning Musume are representative of this phenomenon. Morning Musume was formed in 1997, and in 2000, when a girl of the lolicon target age of twelve joined its ranks, it became a group that attracted attention throughout Japan. In 2003, XYX [Jikkusu], a group comprised of Mari Yaguchi and five girls in elementary school, made its debut. Its members included elementary school students as young as eleven. Around the same time a different company produced SweetS, a group of five eleven- to thirteen-year-old girls, and in 2004, Berryz Kōbō, a group of eight young girls, made its debut. The latter’s members included two sixth-year elementary school students, four fifth-year elementary school students, one fourth-year elementary school student, and one third-year elementary school student; the lowering of the age of members included in such groups had finally led to the appearance of a nine-year-old.

Superficially, these groups are sold with the image of cheerful young girls who like to sing, but under the surface, the “young girls filled with sexual desire” message is cunningly and subliminally constructed. This is immediately evident if we look at the debut photograph of XYX, for example, in which girls who are still in elementary school are dressed in feminine, revealing clothes of the sort normally worn by adult women and their navels and bared midriffs are emphasized. Adult men have been trained to automatically read “women filled with sexual desire” into images of this sort, and the result is that sexual gazes are concentrated and directed toward girls who are still in elementary school.

The same can also be said in the case of SweetS. These girls are photographed wearing adult clothing, baring their legs beneath miniskirts, and giving inviting, “come hither” looks towards the camera. The message that permeates these photographs is, “We are sexually mature children.” The title of their debut single, “LolitA,” is clearly suggestive. The elementary school students in Berryz Kōbō also wear full makeup like adult women, and present an appearance that would make it difficult, if you looked only at their photographs, to imagine they are elementary school students. Their audience is given the message that, although they are still in elementary school, their bodies are already those of adults; they are to be seen as women capable of fully engaging in romantic relationships. And the age of the girls presented in this way is getting lower every year.

There have of course been child actors and celebrities in the past. Idol groups like those mentioned above, however, do not appear in the media simply as children. They are presented as sexually awakened young women; they are, in other words, portrayed and constructed as women with whom you, the viewer, could conceivably have a sexual relationship. The clothing of a mature woman, full makeup, seductive gestures and glances, miniskirts, exposed midriffs, bare thighs: all of these things are part of a scheme that inundates the viewer with subliminal messages.

How many men are there who, when they see these girls in the mass media, actually view them just as “cute little girls”? I suspect that quite a large number of men have a somewhat shameful feeling towards these girls when they look at them. I have asked men I know about this, and there do indeed seem to be men for whom this is the case. In discussions on Internet forums like “2channeru” it is taken for granted that groups like Morning Musume are to be targets of sexual desire. 2channeru, the largest online forum in Japan, is a rare space where people can freely declare their lolicon feelings, and sexual fantasies involving young female idols are discussed there openly and explicitly.

10 Skillful creators of young female “idols”

In this way, “sexual gazes” directed toward girls around the age of twelve have been skillfully cultivated in the popular media, and this is now one of Japan’s largest industries. What men see when they look at these idols is nothing other than the “sex” of these young girls, skillfully presented and wrapped in a candy-like atmosphere.

I made this point at a meeting attended mostly by women and asked for their reaction. Many of these women responded that they had never noticed that idol groups are viewed sexually. Here we see the magic of mass media; both men and women are shown the same images, but what they take from them is very different. Upon seeing a model in a miniskirt, for example, the reaction of many women is to think, “What beautiful legs she has!”, while the reaction of a man who likes miniskirts is a shiver of excitement at the way in which her panties are hidden but seem about to be revealed. In the same way, when an actress of elementary school age appears on TV wearing red lipstick, while a normal woman may simply think, “Little girls are so precocious nowadays. How cute!,” a lolicon man superimposes an adult, fully mature woman on this red lipstick, reads it as a sign that it is OK to approach her sexually, and may for an instant even imagine her genitals, which presumably gleam with the same color.

The creators of young female idols make optimal use of this kind of “perception gap” (different messages being received by different viewers). They surreptitiously bury messages of sexual temptation beneath images of healthy young girls. As a result, lolicon men consume the images of cheerfully cavorting young girls they see on television as public displays of underage pornography.

11 The hidden message in a Minimoni video

An example of the sort of thing discussed above can be seen in a music video called “Minimoni – Jankenpyon!” (Zetima-Sony 2001) featuring members of Minimoni, a spinoff of the idol group Morning Musume. This was the video for a song that was a big hit when it was released, and it was frequently broadcast on Japanese television.

Minimoni is a group consisting of four members of Morning Musume, all of whom are under 150 cm in height. In the first half of the video, there is a scene in which two members of the group who lose a game of “jan ken pon” (rock, paper, scissors) are made to drink milk. Against a backdrop of footage of copious amounts of milk being poured, close-ups of the girls’ faces are shown as they drink milk from bottles with their eyes closed. The gleam of the girls’ lips after they have finished drinking is striking. What this imagery of young girls drinking a white liquid signifies is obvious enough to require no explanation. Another message of a very different nature has thus been skillfully buried beneath the superficial narrative of “Mari Yaguchi hates milk, so let’s make her drink some if she loses the game.” The video incorporating this message was broadcast over and over again on television (the same year also saw the release of a controversial collection of photographs in which idol Ryoko Hirosue was splattered with milk on her face).

What is the result of being subjected to many of these sorts of messages on a daily basis? The idea that “these girls are sexually mature, and they want you to view them sexually just as you would an adult woman” presumably becomes lodged in the back of men’s minds. These images of idols also function as a kind of template that ordinary young girls are supposed to imitate. Girls are brainwashed into thinking it is cool to project their sexual value like these idols who are as young as they are. These messages operate selectively on the men and young girls who consume popular media. Even though they see the same images, there may be many adult women and mothers who do not perceive the existence of these messages at all. Adult women may get no further than being intoxicated by the excitement of superimposing their younger selves on idols and thinking, “How cute!”

12 Sexual presentation used in collections of photographs of beautiful young girls

When it comes to other media like books of photographs, here too a large number of works that can be seen as targeting lolicon men have entered circulation. For an example of this sort of publication, let us look at an idol photograph collection published in 2000 (I will refrain from giving its title). This is a collection of beautiful photographs of a young female celebrity I will refer to as S who has also appeared in movies and TV programs. At the time the book was published, S was an eleven-year-old elementary school student, and the advertising sleeve wrapped around the book proclaimed “The debut of a very beautiful young girl.” There is indeed nothing false about this claim.

On the cover of the book there is a close-up of S, and her lips, set in a somehow adult-looking face, are covered in pink lipstick. She is wearing an elementary school uniform with shoulder straps. While employing the power of the uniform discussed in Chapter Three, the message that “even though this girl is still an elementary school student, sexually she is already an adult” is broadcast to the reader. This is the main theme of this photograph collection.

Turning the pages we find several pictures taken in the yard of what appears to be S’s elementary school. Unlike the first photograph, in these shots she does not appear to be anything other than a young girl in elementary school. But the pink lipstick is still carefully applied. One photo that stands out in this series shows S spraying water from a hose in the schoolyard. She is smiling mischievously as she enthusiastically shoots water from the hose, and the navy blue skirt of her school uniform is being blown quite high by the wind. The shot is contrived in such a way that while nothing is revealed anyone seeing it will wonder what is under her skirt. The subliminal intention of this photograph is clear. A girl with her skirt hiked up and water being energetically emitted by the hose. This can only be interpreted as an image of ejaculation towards the genital area of this young female elementary school student. The photographer presumably took a large number of photos in the schoolyard, and we cannot help but discern the intention of the creator of this collection in the selection of this particular shot.

Next there are several photographs taken at the school’s swimming pool. S is sitting on the diving board wearing a white blouse and a navy blue pleated skirt with shoulder straps. The toes of her bare feet are extended as though she is trying to touch the surface of the water in the pool. She is staring fixedly in the direction of the viewer, and her skirt is pulled up above her thighs in an unnatural manner that we can only suppose was the result of it being intentionally hiked up by the photographer or one of his assistants when the photograph was being taken. Her oddly bared legs and lipstick visible even at a distance combine to produce a sense of coquettishness. It is a photograph designed to have the viewer look at this elementary school student as they would an adult woman. Her uniform, hiked-up skirt, made-up face, and round eyes staring in the direction of the viewer – this sort of “presentation of a woman” is being extended even to a young girl still in elementary school.

Around the middle of the collection of photographs, the same girl is shown in regular clothing (not a uniform) standing in front of a traditional Japanese-style candy store. Her hair is braided and she is wearing a high-waisted cotton dress that emphasizes the fact that she is a child, but what she is holding in her hand is a freshly opened bottle of milk. She is bringing the bottle of white milk to her lips as though about to drink from it. Here the “young girl drinking milk” motif that appeared in the Minimoni video is once again being employed. There are all kinds of juices and soft drinks in the candy store’s fridge, so why did they decide to have her drink “milk”? I can think of only one reason. It does not need repeating.

Of course, this collection also includes many photographs portraying the everyday life of an innocent elementary school student. These include images of a pretty young girl playing and having fun. Amongst these, however, “contrived” shots like those described above are slipped in very naturally. This naturalness allows a subliminal message to circumvent our conscious judgment and imprint itself on our brains as we look at the photographs in the collection. The message is that this young girl is a child but sexually available; it signals to men that she is prepared to accept their semen.

Presumably, the men who receive this message subconsciously get a mysterious “feeling of excitement” from looking through the photographs in this collection. This “feeling of excitement” is an arousal born of their looking at a young girl sexually. I think it is the intention of the producers of these books to stimulate this sense of excitement and thereby cause men who see the photographs to buy the book without really knowing why. You do not have to go to some kind of specialty store to buy the book of photographs I have been discussing; you can easily find it in any bookstore’s “idol corner.” The girl who is the subject of its photographs is a “junior idol” who appears on TV and in films. The current state of Japanese society is thus one in which the gradual encroachment of this subliminal scheme occurs even in the broad daylight of mainstream culture.

13 Bold pink lipstick on a nine-year-old girl

Let us look at another book of photographs. This beautifully presented collection was published in 2004 and features a nine-year-old model I will call “K” (I will once again refrain from stating the title of the book in question). Like the book discussed above, this collection can also be found in regular bookstores. On the cover there is a picture of a young girl dressed in a white gymnastics outfit and navy blue bloomers, smiling at the camera. Her face does indeed look innocent and like that of a nine-year-old girl. But her lips are covered in lipstick. “First collection of photographs of this new little elementary school student junior idol” is written on the book’s promotional sleeve, and on the inside cover her date of birth is listed along with her height of 129 cm.

Turning the pages, we find several photographs of this girl dressed in regular clothing (not a uniform) and staring into the camera. Her hair has been neatly blow-dried and she has had makeup applied to such an extent that looking only at her face you might mistake her for a junior high or high school idol. Her immature body, however, is immediately recognizable as that of a child. The names of the hair and makeup professionals involved are listed on the book’s title page. The impression created is that this nine-year-old model has been photographed using the same sort of production techniques employed at a junior high or high school “idol” photo shoot.

Next comes the most shocking photograph. The girl has been made up like an adult woman with thick pink lipstick and mascara, and she has been posed staring at the camera with a red “randoseru” (a leather satchel or backpack used by elementary school students in Japan) strapped to her back. Her outfit of sneakers, white socks, a checkered skirt, and a red ribbon around her collar resembles a school uniform; a recorder and a stuffed animal hang from her randoseru, and she is staring at the camera with a seductive expression on her face, her eyes languidly half closed and her red mouth half open. With makeup the face of this young girl becomes that of an adult woman. While taken outdoors in the street, no matter how you look at it, this photograph cannot be seen as anything other than a sexual invitation to male readers. This sort of expression and pose is often seen in photographs of adult idols, but here exactly the same look is being given to a girl in elementary school. The large randoseru makes her body look small by comparison and heightens the sense of innocence and youth. She is nine years old; this means that she is a third-year elementary student.

Next comes a series of pictures in which K is posed holding a recorder. There are shots of her holding it in both hands and shots of her lying sprawled out on the veranda of an old-fashioned Japanese dwelling clutching the instrument and staring provocatively at the camera. The red randoseru is still strapped to her back. One the next page there is a photograph of her lying sideways on the veranda with her head resting on the randoseru. She is holding the recorder in front of her chest and staring up at the camera directly above her with her mouth half open. In this shot, the viewer’s perspective is that of someone looking directly down on the young girl’s upturned face and body stretched out on the veranda. It is as though the viewer is standing astride her and looking down at her body splayed out below him. Her skirt is hiked up exposing her white thighs. The next shot is a close-up showing her face as she softly places the thick tip of the recorder between her lips. The gaze of the girl with the recorder in her mouth is focused directly on the camera, the sunlight is blocked as though someone is standing over her, and her stuffed animal is tucked under her shoulder. The meaning of this series of photographs is once again obvious enough to require no explanation.

Next there are many typical school swimsuit shots and idol photographs. As I mentioned earlier, the creator of this collection demands from K exactly the same poses and clothing normally seen in books devoted to junior high or high school idols. Is it strange for this girl who clearly has the body of a child to show this kind of adult coquetry, or nowadays is it indeed not so strange? Towards the end of the book comes the most unequivocal close-up. Wearing a red blouse, the girl looks directly at the camera as she inserts a freshly-peeled banana into her mouth. Her lips are wide open and look as if they are being pushed apart by the white flesh of the banana. What more need be said? In the collection’s final photograph she is wearing a swimsuit and staring provocatively at the camera with her thighs open.

14 What are the parents of these girls thinking?

What I have discussed above constitutes just a tiny sample of the many “junior idol” photograph collections that are currently in circulation. A solid market for these sorts of publications has been established, and they are openly sold in normal bookstores and online shops. On seeing these sorts of photographs, one cannot help but wonder what the parents of these girls could be thinking. Of course, there are presumably some cases where the girl’s parents are deeply in debt or are somehow threatened or coerced. But it is impossible to believe that such circumstances always exist. We can only speculate about the reasons parents would consent to their children being photographed in this way, but it may be that mothers superimpose themselves on their daughters, who as “idols” will presumably enjoy public adulation and the glow of the mass media spotlight, and in doing so vicariously experience a feeling of achievement as a woman.

But what about these girls’ fathers? Do they not object to this sexual treatment of their daughters? If we consider the age of fathers with nine- to fourteen-year-old daughters, however, they will presumably be somewhere in their late thirties to mid-forties. That’s right – the same age group as the man arrested on suspicion of looking up the skirts of high school students and the man sent to prison for paying a twelve-year-old girl for sex mentioned earlier. In other words, there is a possibility that the fathers of these girls are lolicon men. These fathers themselves may be turned on by these photographs of their daughters. Considered in this light, the situation is extremely disturbing. The parents make no objection and the girls themselves are happy to have their pictures taken. The reach of “junior idol” photo collections and DVDs will thus presumably expand and continue to drive the loliconification of society as a whole.

15 People who flock to “child pornography in disguise”

The phenomenon discussed above is currently limited to a certain type of photography collection, but in the future its range may expand to include the mainstream media. Morning Musume has already opened this door. With lolicon having permeated teachers, scholars, film directors, and people in other such influential professions, and taken hold among men in the age group that forms the central pillar of Japanese society, it feels as though there may even be no going back. What is to be done if lolicon has deeply and silently penetrated the men whose age gives them social responsibility for advocating and embodying social norms?

Of course, even today there are more explicit photographs and videos of the sexual abuse of young girls circulating below the surface of this society. These images violate the human rights of the girls involved in their creation, and have the potential to lead the inveterate lolicon men who buy them to further criminal acts. Pornography depicting the sexual abuse of young girls must be strictly prohibited. This is something I would like to make absolutely clear before proceeding any further.

Having said this, what I would like to focus on in this chapter involves a force that is promoting the loliconification of society by a completely different route. This is the force that disseminates, in the form of perfectly legal photography collections and TV programs that on the surface carry no hint of sexuality, the kind of subliminal sexual presentation of young girls I have described, and, without running afoul of any laws, engages in large scale advertising of these “big hits,” openly marketing and selling this “child pornography in disguise.”

As our society values freedom of expression and freedom of taste, as long as no young girls are actually being sexually abused it is difficult to regulate these products. The result of this is a structure in which many men quietly draw shameful sexual pleasure out of works that on the surface bear no sign of being child pornography. This is the scheme I see when I look at projects like Morning Musume. I cannot see it as “the story of a group of happy and cheerful young girls learning to sing and dance.” We who have an internal psychological response to this “child pornography in disguise” and seek sexual gratification on the sly while saying, “Aren’t those girls cute?” must take a hard look at ourselves.

16 The loliconification of society won’t stop!?

So far we have looked at books of photographs and DVDs, but the same state of affairs can also be observed on the Internet. For example, there is a certain site that offers access to photographs and videos of girls under fifteen years of age for a fee. The youngest girls featured are ten years old. The images include photographs of girls in school uniforms and swimwear, and here too girls can be seen wearing makeup. In the title sequence of the sample video, a girl in a school swimsuit, her thighs open, is shown from the waist down, and the message being sent to viewers is extremely direct. Another related site also markets girls under fifteen, and once again the youngest girls shown are ten years old. These Internet sites are not so-called “adult” websites. Anybody can view them without restriction, and their presentation is clean and cute. The models appear to be Japanese “junior idols.” Recently, even photography collections of the sort I have discussed are often sold together with a DVD. It would seem that going forward there are various routes by which videos of young girls will be disseminated for sexually oriented consumption.

This is how things stood as of the summer of 2004. The entertainment industry changes very quickly, so the specific circumstances surrounding the commoditization of young girls can shift in a very short period of time. The viewing of young girls in a sexual light, however, seems certain to continue for the foreseeable future without any fundamental change.

What will happen if the degree to which “child pornography in disguise” permeates the mainstream media steadily increases? For one thing, it seems likely that these girls will be troubled when they become adults and realize the meaning of what they did as children. This is a major problem that is not openly addressed. Second, just by watching normal TV programs and reading normal magazines, men will be subjected to a barrage of stimulation from this “child pornography in disguise,” and as a result, even men who do not acquire actual child pornography will gradually and unknowingly develop a sexual sensitivity to young girls. There is thus a danger that the loliconification of society as a whole will continue unabated, with ever larger markets for products related to young girls being created and ever more skillful schemes of stimulation being implemented.


Section 3: Why Do Lolicon Men Desire Young Girls?

17 Analyzing the thoughts and desires of lolicon men

Now let us attempt to look inside the minds of people with lolicon, because the causes of this phenomenon are to be found not only within society but also within the minds of the individuals who experience it. In order to bring these causes to light, I will attempt to dispassionately analyze the lolicon feelings I myself have experienced.

In The Frequently Occurring Prostitution of Young Girls: Men Who Buy Children (Tahatsusuru Shojyokaishun: Kodomo wo Kau Otoko, Shinhyōron, 2001), Setsuko Inoue examines men who buy young girls both in Japan and overseas. In her book she speculates as follows on the reason these men pay young girls for sex:

[W]hen a woman cannot build a strong interpersonal relationship with the man to whom she is married, she tries to find a substitute for this in her son, a person of the same gender as her husband, and becomes an “education mama” [a Japanese term for mothers who are obsessed with ensuring their children’s educational achievement] who, in the name of what is best for her son, pursues her own self-realization through her child. While at first glance this behavior may appear to be motivated by love for the child in question, these actions are in fact those of a mother who cannot attain independence stoking her own self-love. As a result, in order to sever this emotional connection with their mothers, these sons try to protect themselves by engaging in behaviors that separate love from sex. One of these behaviors is engaging in child prostitution. (pp.79-80)

This alone, however, does not explain why these men turn to “young girls” rather than “adult women.” Elsewhere Inoue writes that “men who like cute little girls are themselves childish and immature” (p.79), but this seems to be a weak explanation of why the sexuality of these men is focused on little girls (Inoue’s focus on a son’s separation from his mother in her investigation of the cause of child prostitution is interesting, however, and I will return to it later).

Steady progress has been made in research on men who sexually abuse young girls. One of the things this has brought to light is the existence of a “cycle of abuse” in which men who were sexually abused as children go on to sexually abuse young girls when they grow up. Other psychological factors such as leading an isolated lifestyle and having an underdeveloped self have also been identified (see, for example, Chapter Five of Yoshiyuki Ishikawa’s Sexual Abuse by Relatives (Shinzoku ni yoru Seigyakutai, Minerva Shobo, 2004). This kind of work must continue in order to reduce the number of young girls who become victims of sexual abuse, but one troubling aspect this of research is that its focus is almost entirely limited to men who have actually committed sex crimes. What I want to address in this book is the psychology of men who have never committed a sex crime but nevertheless carry lolicon thoughts and desires in their minds. The issue I want to examine is that the large number of men whose lolicon does not take them as far as breaking the law are promoting the loliconification of society and creating an environment in which young girls become objects of sexual consumption.

18 The “dangerous” cuteness of young girls

So what does lolicon feel like? Men who have abducted young girls have sometimes stated that they took them “because they were cute.” I can understand this feeling well. Girls in elementary school and junior high school are unfailingly cute, at least when seen from a distance. And this “cuteness” already contains a sexual element, because for me the feeling of “cuteness” elicited by a young girl is clearly different from the feeling of “cuteness” elicited by a young boy of the same age. When it comes to boys there is a straightforward feeling of “isn’t he cute!”, but when it comes to girls, in addition to this sort of feeling there is also the sense of a “dangerous” cuteness that cannot easily be put into words. This awareness of a “dangerous” cuteness comes from something being shaken deep within me, and intuitively it seems that it must be something sexual.

As I have already noted, lolicon men seem to most desire girls around the age of eleven or twelve. This corresponds to girls in their last year of elementary school and first year of junior high school. While this age marks the peak of desirability, the range of girls that lolicon men may be attracted to extends roughly from nine to fourteen.

In the photography collections discussed above, girls of nine and eleven years of age wear makeup and clearly noticeable lipstick. And in photos of them in their swimsuits and other outfits, they adopt the same sorts of sexy poses and expressions normally used by adult idols. What should we make of this? Sometimes girls around this age put on their mother’s lipstick and pretend to be grown-up, and one interpretation would be that these photographs are a depiction of this sort of behavior. But this cannot be anything more than a poor excuse offered by those who produce these images. Another interpretation is that making these elementary school students look like adult women implicitly signals that it is OK to have sex with them. This message appeals directly to the sexual interest of lolicon men, and accurately expresses the intentions of the producers of the photographs. The use of adult makeup such as mascara is saying to the viewer, “this girl is still a child, but you can treat her like an adult woman.” Lipstick, adult makeup, and provocative poses are all forms of “impression management” (deception through appearance) designed to raise the perceived age of the young girl in question.

Conversely, there are also “lolicon photos” taken using models that are over eighteen, and in such cases an exactly opposite phenomenon occurs; “impression management” is used to make the models appear as though they might be very young. These girls are photographed with braided hair, hardly any make-up, and intentionally innocent expressions. These models’ bodies are inevitably adult in shape, and this adultness must be obscured and their apparent age lowered through their hairstyle and clothing. As for how far this reverse aging is intended to go, for the most part these girls appear as though they might be junior high school students.

19 The meaning of “secondary sex characteristics”

So what is the significance of this age of eleven to twelve years old? What I would like to focus on here is the fact that this is the age when girls begin to show “secondary sex characteristics” and is also the average age at which girls begin to menstruate. Both of these facts are deeply significant, and I will address each of them in turn.

Secondary sex characteristics arise when gonadotropins are released by the pituitary gland and a child’s body transforms into that of an adult. In the case of girls their breasts grow larger, their bodies become more curvaceous, and their waists begin to narrow in comparison with their hips.

For example, a certain website that sells photographs of girls under fifteen features the following text about a twelve-year-old girl I will refer to as “A”: “Her eyes look straight ahead, emitting the light possessed only by young girls who remain unsullied. This earnest charm made me feel ‘she really is still a child,’ but on the other hand her slightly averted gaze when she posed in her school swimsuit and her slightly melancholy look in her school uniform gave me a foreshadowing of her transformation into an adult woman that made me very excited.” The following was written about the ten-year-old “T” on a different website: “But looking at this girl’s face and silhouette without focusing too sharply, it seems that before much time has passed she will begin climbing the stairway out of girlhood, and I felt as though these photographs might just have captured this exquisite moment.” What can be seen from these descriptions is the obsession-like desire on the part of the creators of these photography collections to witness the transformation from girl to woman occurring in eleven and twelve-year-old girls. It would seem that this desire is also shared by the people who buy these books of lolicon photography.

In other words, lolicon men have a strange fixation on the moment of transformation when a girl becomes a woman. They are not fixated on “grown-up women” but rather the “moment” at which an adult woman comes into being. So why do they feel such a strong attraction to this moment of transformation? Feminism may see a cause of this obsession in patriarchies that place a special value on the possession of virgins, but I would like to look at it from a different angle.

Secondary sex characteristics arise during the period in which girls’ bodies become “feminine” and boys’ bodies become “masculine.” The state of affairs before secondary sex characteristics begin to emerge is thus one in which the bodies of boys and girls, while their reproductive organs differ, are quite similar in size and general appearance. Statistics show that up until around the sixth year of elementary school the average height of boys is almost exactly the same as that of girls (146 cm for sixth-graders). At this point in their development most boys have not yet acquired much muscle and most girls’ bodies are still skinny and linear.

In fact, during this period, a boy dressed up in female clothing could pass for a cute girl. In Japan there used to be a custom of dressing young boys in the sort of attire normally worn by women. And since at this age boys’ voices have not yet begun to change, there is little discernible difference between the voices of male and female children. There may of course be differences in behavior and ways of playing between boys and girls, but when it comes to children’s bodies themselves there does not seem to be a pronounced difference between the sexes. While boys and girls at this age are well aware of the differences between their bodies, compared to the split that occurs when secondary sex characteristics begin to appear these differences are negligibly small. Considering customs like dressing boys in the clothing of the opposite sex, it can be suggested that at this age both boys and girls have a seemingly “unisex” body (a body of undifferentiated sex) that could still become either male or female.

It is the emergence of secondary sex characteristics, triggered by the release of gonadotropins, that all at once transforms this unisex body into either a “female body” or a “male body.” From a state of affairs like that of a bud whose ultimate form is unknown, a “male body” or “female body” suddenly blossoms. Images of puberty of this kind are evocatively depicted in many books and movies. It is an experience everyone can relate to.

A young girl is a being who, at the point of puberty’s bifurcation into “man” or “woman,” is attempting to bend itself towards the body of a woman. Lolicon men are those who carry aspirations toward girls in this state and fixate on them. So why are these men so interested in this moment when a child begins to turn towards the “female side”?

20 The idea of having grown into a “man’s body” by mistake

I will use my own case as an example. There is an idea that has settled at the bottom of my consciousness. This idea is that at the point of bifurcation during puberty I may have taken the wrong path. Perhaps I was supposed to have blossomed into a “female body” but by some mistake I took a wrong turn toward the “body of a man,” or, to put it more accurately, I was forcibly compelled to take the path leading to the body of an adult male without my conscious will having any say in the matter. This is the sort of thing you often hear from people with gender identity disorder. I would speculate, however, that a much wider range of men are also able to understand this feeling.

As for why I have this idea of having grown into a man’s body by mistake, I think it is because ever since I hit puberty and my body began to change I have been unable to affirm myself as a being with a “man’s body.” As my body became that of an adult, it began to produce male hormones, grow muscles, acquire a more rugged, angular shape, grow more hair, and dirty itself with seminal fluid, and a strange odor began to emanate from somewhere inside me. That I was becoming this sort of body was something I could not accept at all during my adolescence. Even now I cannot honestly say that I am really happy to have the body of a man. Of course there is nothing to be done about it now, but I suspect there are in fact many men who feel as I do. They have perhaps remained silent about it because it is an extremely difficult thing to say out loud. They also probably try not to think about it very much, as in our society, having sufficient confidence in one’s own male body is connected to male honor.

Deep down inside me, there is a longing to return to the body I had when I was a young boy, a body that had not yet been transformed by male hormones, muscles, body hair, and semen. There is also a longing to take the other path, if I could, at the point of bifurcation during puberty and make a sharp about-face towards a “female body” that does not have any of these attributes. Deep within my consciousness I ruminate on these longings over and over again. And I am drawn to the bodies of eleven and twelve-year-old girls that stand at puberty’s point of bifurcation and are just beginning to turn towards a “female body.” I think to myself, “I wish I could have taken that other path like the body of this young girl,”and I feel a desire to slip my consciousness into her body and while inhabiting it experience her puberty from the inside. This is how my lolicon mentality arises. Here we see once again the psychological mechanism described at the end of Chapter Three.

21 “I am the young girl, the young girl is me”

I wish I could try living in a girl’s body. Uniform fetishes and lolicon have this sentiment in common. I am the young girl, the young girl is me. Uniforms and lolicon are the things that can, for a brief moment, make this aberrant fantasy come true. Most men have not spoken about this psychological secret out loud, but there must in fact be many who will immediately understand what I am trying to say. In his well-known book Folklore of Young Girls (Shōjo Minzokugaku, Kōbunsha, 1989), Eiji Ōtsuka writes, “Inside of me, and inside of you, the reader, there is a ‘young girl’” (p. 112), and I think the true meaning of this statement must be understood in the sense described above.

Regarding the cause of lolicon, my hypothesis is thus that it can be found in lolicon men’s inability to affirm their own bodies. In his imagination a lolicon man escapes his own body and secretly transports himself into the body of the young girl in front of him. It is said that most male “otaku” [geeks] are lolicon men, and this hypothesis can explain both why these men tend to be extremely indifferent to their own appearance and why they have a tendency to identify themselves with young girl characters on the Internet (on this identification with young girl characters see Hiroki Azuma, ed., Net Speech Revision F [Mōjyō Genron F Kai], Seidosha, 2003). Through this identification with young girl characters, a male otaku succumbs to the illusion that his appearance is that of a young girl and thus becomes indifferent to how he actually looks to others.

I would also suggest that these lolicon men spend a lot of time every day surfing the Internet, looking at magazines, and watching anime in search of bodies of young girls worth transporting themselves into. Mamoru Oshii’s animated film Ghost in the Shell (based on a manga series by Masamune Shiro) depicts a world in which a mind or spirit that has lost its own body can move from one new body to the next. The creator of this work calls these replacement bodies “prosthetic bodies” (“gitai” in Japanese), and for lolicon men I suspect that the bodies of young girls or young girl characters appear to be their own “prosthetic bodies” (in this sense, the final scene of Ghost in the Shell can be described as a rendering of a lolicon man’s dream come true).

With this in mind, the new meaning of “moe” becomes clear. When otaku see a young female anime character or figurine and say they feel “moe,” they are saying that they would like to implant themselves within the object of this attraction; they want to “wear” the body of a beautiful young girl. It is thus the wearing of a young girl’s body that constitutes the core of an otaku’s “moe.” A transvestite wears women’s clothing, but a lolicon man wears a young girl’s body.

Here I would like to mention The Murder of Childhood (Penguin Books, 1995), a book by Tim Tate and Ray Wyre about a British sex criminal named Robert Black. Black was reputed to have sexually abused hundreds of girls and killed at least a few of his victims. One very interesting passage reads as follows:

But tucked away at the end of the section, question 27 and 28 asked whether Black had ever enjoyed transvestism or sought to be a transsexual. Slowly he nodded. As to transvestism, he had sometimes dressed himself in little girls’ clothes. And as to seeking out the life of a transsexual, Black simply recorded: ‘Yes. I always wanted to dress up as a girl.’

. . . The second, and in some ways corollary, force was a powerful yearning not to be what he was, a young boy growing into a man. He would far rather have been born a girl: certainly he did not want, much less like, his own penis. (pp. 85-86)

In the mind of this lolicon criminal, the authors discovered a reluctance to become an “adult man” and a strong desire to have been born a girl. This agrees with what I have asserted so far. Tate and Wyre, however, do not seek a more penetrating explanation of why these feelings exist. I must go beyond their analysis and conduct a deeper investigation.

I suspect there will be critics who dismiss analysis such as that I have engaged in above as pertaining only to the lolicon tendencies of feeble “weaklings” who failed to become “real men.” But how would they explain the fact that a sense of having not wanted to become a man and a desire to have been able to experience being a girl has also been found in the mind of a brutal murderer like Black? It seems clear that a similar structure exists in the minds of lolicon men regardless of whether they are “well built” or physically weak.

I am sure there are also some readers who would doubt my account and suggest that, far from being unable to affirm their own bodies, most men on the contrary think too highly of their own powerful physiques, and it is because of this that they view women with contempt and commit rape. I will analyze these points in greater detail while referencing my own case in the next chapter.

22 What wriggles at the deepest level of the desire for young girls

We have seen that lolicon superimposes a wish to have been able to take the path towards a female body on top of young girls on the verge of making this transition from the unisex body of a child to that of an adult woman. This alone, however, cannot explain why lolicon men attempt to become “sexually” involved with young girls, and why they are “sexually” aroused by their photographs, because if superimposing themselves on the body of a young girl is all they want then simply fantasizing about transporting themselves into a girl’s body and being absorbed in that delusion while having a cup of tea should satisfy them. It should be enough to quietly savor this kind of fantasy as one might enjoy sitting in the South of France and taking in the beautiful scenery depicted in Van Gogh’s landscapes.

But the lolicon feeling I myself have actually experienced is not so calm and gentle. There is a shameful, thrilling sensation, as though sex with a young girl were always tacitly being assumed from the start. As I stated earlier, since I experience the same feelings towards a young girl that I feel during sexual contact with an adult woman, I cannot help but admit that ultimately these fantasies terminate in sexual intercourse and ejaculation.

To unravel this further, let us recall what has been pointed out so far. “Secondary sex characteristics” appear in girls between the ages of eleven and twelve. This age range is nearly identical to the “average age of first menstruation.” I have already sufficiently examined “secondary sex characteristics,” so here I would like to focus my investigation on the “average age of first menstruation.”

From this perspective, lolicon men exhibit a strange attachment to the age at which girls normally menstruate for the first time. What is the significance of this?

A girl getting her first period means she is capable of becoming pregnant. Her body is now able to take semen from a man, combine it with an egg, and conceive a child. Presumably this is what lolicon men are fixated on.

Now I will attempt to enter the deepest levels of lolicon desires. Please read the following as nothing more than a single hypothesis aimed at better understanding lolicon.

I think that what is hidden in the deepest level of the minds of lolicon men like me is a desire to be the first to insert their semen into a young girl who has now become capable of ovulation and make her pregnant by combining her egg with their sperm. So whose child would be born if this happened?

Let us think about it one more time.

What do I see in the young girl in front of me?

The answer is already clear. In the young girl’s body in front of me I see nothing other than an image of myself. In the body I am looking at, I see an image of “another me” that would have become a cute young girl if by some quirk of fate I had gone the other way at the point of bifurcation during puberty.

If this is the case, then my desire to have the young girl I am looking at give birth to my child is actually a desire to have “another me,” in the form of the young girl, give birth to my child. I want a child created by the synthesis of my sperm and the egg of another me. This would indeed be nothing other than my own rebirth; a new me born without the intervention of anyone else other than me.

This is the drama that unfolds at the deepest levels of my consciousness when I feel a desire to have sex with a young girl and ejaculate inside her. And this sexual intercourse must occur at the point of pubescent bifurcation when she is just beginning to turn down the path to the other side, because it was at this decisive moment I took the wrong path toward a “male body” and only by thus starting over again from this bifurcation will I have the opportunity to affirm myself.

In other words, what is in the back of my mind is a desire to have sex with “another me” in the form of a young girl and in doing so give birth to myself once again without the intervention of anyone else.

23 Why do I want “myself” to be reborn?

So what kind of self-affirmation could be achieved by having sex with a young girl and giving birth to myself once again? My thoughts on this are as follows. Since the new me would be conceived using my sperm and my egg and would be born out of my own belly, this newly reborn me would be completely cut off from any external “mother.” It would be “I,” not my “mother,” who gave birth to this me, and there would in fact be no “mother” involved in my birth. By giving birth to myself, I would be able to affirm my existence in a way that has no connection to a “mother.” I would thereby be able to completely separate myself from any kind of “mother.” This sort of drama is being played out inside lolicon men like me.

It is often said that men who cannot psychologically separate from their mothers become “lolicon men” (for example, one proposed explanation of lolicon is that men whose wives rebuff their demands for mothering may try to have these needs met by their daughters. See Yoshiyuki Ishikawa’s Sexual Abuse by Relatives, p. 243). But does this explanation not have it completely backwards? Is lolicon not in fact an attempt, in the convoluted manner outlined above, to achieve a separation from one’s “mother”? There are certain things that come to mind when the phenomenon is considered in this way.

I first came to know lolicon feelings directly when I was around twenty years old. At that time, so-called “lolicon magazines” and “lolicon manga” were beginning to be available at bookstores, it wasn’t until I reached this age that I suddenly started to pay attention to them. I first left the countryside and came to live on my own in Tokyo around this time, and it was a period of sudden self-awakening for me. For the first time in my life I was attempting to stand on my own two feet. And I began to fight with my mother. I will refrain from discussing the specifics here, but it was when I began fighting with my mother and severed my ties with her that lolicon feelings, as if to replace her, arose within me. In other words, the struggle with my real mother was over but the battle with “mother” as an abstract concept took the form of lolicon and continued within me after that.

If you really want to understand the feelings of lolicon men, I think you must attempt to understand psychological mechanisms of this kind from the inside. It is wholly inadequate to simply view this phenomenon as sexual violence committed against weak young girls by immature men who cannot obtain an adult female partner. Yukiko Hayami’s Men Who Cannot Love, for example, contains interesting reportage on lolicon men, but seems unable to break free of this prevailing picture of immature, “mother complex” men abusing young girls who cannot put up much resistance.

Of course, it goes without saying that the “rebirth theory” I have proposed cannot explain everything either. This hypothesis should, however, offer one means of more deeply elucidating the lolicon mind.

I have said that the ultimate goal of lolicon men like me is to transport ourselves into the body of a cute young girl who is at the point of pubescent bifurcation, live inside it, savor the experience of being inside it to our heart’s content, dress it up in various outfits and interact with other people from within it, be treated gently as something precious by other people, and come to truly love our own bodies. I then want to ejaculate into the girl’s womb from inside her, become pregnant, and give birth to myself. By doing this I will finally be able to escape from my mother’s sphere of influence. I will become an entity born of myself, and in doing so obtain absolute freedom without ever needing to be subordinate to anyone. I will obtain the physical ideal of the body of a young girl, feel self-affirmation towards my own body, and also obtain the internal freedom of psychological independence. The world will bless me, I will bless myself, and my existence will become one of perfect self-fulfillment and satisfaction.

But I cannot attain self-affirmation by clinging to this conceptual drama – life is not that easy. Lolicon results in a self-enclosed world in which this convoluted drama of self-affirmation is repeated over and over again like a tape playing in an endless loop. It is I who impregnate, it is I who am impregnated, and it is I who am given birth to. It is a self-centered labyrinth of extreme self-reference with no way out. A flesh and blood young girl is used as nothing more than a trigger or prosthetic body; once she is no longer needed she is to be discarded. She is also to be molested, abused, commoditized, and subjected to severe trauma. These are the consequences of lolicon. There is indeed no escaping them.

(End of Chapter 4)


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