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Book Launch & Talk: Schoolgirls, Money And Rebellion In Japan By Sharon Kinsella

Analysis of youth, girls culture, culture industries, corporate culture, social discourse, political change, and governance, in contemporary Japan!

Schoolgirls, Money and Rebellion in JapanDate: Friday, 6 December 2013
Time: Talk at 6.30pm followed by a drinks reception to 8.30pm
Venue: Daiwa Foundation Japan House 13/14 Cornwall Terrace, Outer Circle London NW1 4QP  MAP

Admission free, booking essential

Schoolgirls, Money and Rebellion in Japan analyses the cult of schoolgirls in contemporary Japan and the interaction of girls’ street fashions and male journalistic and subcultural forms organised predominantly around the fetishistic portrayal of young girls and schoolgirls. The book is divided into three parts, of which the first part unravels the sociological sources and mediated substance of the moral panic about compensated dating (enjo kōsai) in the late 1990s. The second part looks at kogyaru and ganguro street fashions and their reflexive and antiphonal interplay with a dominant stream of television and magazine journalism about deviant and sexualised girls emanating from male-oriented camps in the mass media. Throughout the book, the historical roots of the cult of girls from alternatively educated or lower-class social worlds are brought to the reader to deepen their grasp of the imagination and symbolism underlying contemporary poses. The third part of this book pursues deeper reflection on the schoolgirl conflagration in three directions: considering it as an instance of cultural appropriation and projection akin to the structure of nineteenth century black and white minstrelsy; secondly an analysis of the leftist tendency towards seeing girls as key figures of resistance against modern exploitation and appropriation; and finally, an exploration of the subtle political interplay between journalism about sexualised schoolgirls and reporting on the legal and political campaign for compensation of wartime Imperial comfort women.

* The book will be available on the day at the special price of £20

Dr Sharon Kinsella is Lecturer in Japanese Studies at the University of Manchester, and has been focusing on the cultural language and political symbolism of both mass media and mass cultural production and subcultural forms and reactions since the early 1990s. Her earlier work looked at cuteness and infantilism as rebellion; the educational and class sociology behind the institutional and commercial transformation and expansion of manga for adult men; otaku subculture and media framing and Lolita complex subculture. Schoolgirls, Money and Rebellion in Japan incorporates research on girls’ street styles and male journalism and cult formations around girls carried out in fieldwork and interviews over a protracted period of time from the late 1990s to the 2010s. Sharon Kinsella has a DPhil in Sociology from the University of Oxford and has worked in the US (Yale and MIT) and in universities in the UK (Oxford and Cambridge).

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