What if all Marvel movies were only targeted at men / boys? That's a sort of weird thing that we think about as we get into this week's topic: Fans of anime and manga "for girls" (aka: Shoujo and Josei). What is the most popular shoujo / josei title? Do men read / watch it? How successful is it? All this and more on this week's episode with special guest, Caitline Moore ([I Have a Heroine Problem](https://heroineproblem.com/), [Anime Feminist](https://www.animefeminist.com/author/caitlinmoore/))!
Next week, we'll overthrow a dystopian goverment (WAKE UP, MEEPLE!) and probably grow a bunch of fields to feed our family to _not_ die in some medieval time; that's right, we'll be talking about fans of board games!
## Where can I learn more about Caitlin Moore?
Caitlin is the author of [I Have a Heroine Problem](https://heroineproblem.com/), a blog about critically examining media (particularly, shoujo and other anime / manga) from a feminist perspective. Right now, she is running a column examining abusive relationships in Shoujo, which is on week eleven as of this writing.
She is also a contributor to the [Anime Feminist](https://www.animefeminist.com/author/caitlinmoore/) as a columnist and ocassional Chatty AF (the Anime Feminist's podcast) guest.
She is also a multiple-time panelist at a variety of conventions, tackling topics such as _Awesome Women Making Anime_, _Romance and Abuse in Shoujo Manga_, _Isekai Shoujo of the 1990s_, and _Is This Feminist or Not?_
AND, if that's not enough, you can find her on Twitter: [@alltsun_nodere](https://twitter.com/alltsun_nodere)
## Episode outline
### Fandom Facts
**Origins and history:**
Anime and manga (animation and comics) are very broad categories of media, originating in Japan. Shoujo (_young girl_) is one of four main categories of anime and manga targeted at different groups also including shounen (for boys), josei (for women) and seinin (for men). Shoujo and josei are not so much a genre unto themselves as they are target demographics for reader/viewership.
Shoujo dates back to the earliest 20th century when magazines specifically for girls first appeared in Japan. The wide-eyed look commonly associated with shoujo dates back to early illustrations in these magazines. Until the mid-1960s, men vastly outnumbered women in terms of mangaka, and between 1950 and 1969 large audiences for manga emerged in Japan, as did a flood of young female mangaka. ([Wikipedia - Shōjo manga](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sh%C5%8Djo_manga))
Josei began to appear during the 1980s during a different manga boom when girls who grew up reading shoujo manga in the 50s and 60s wanted manga for adult women. ([Wikipedia - Josei manga](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Josei_manga))
The history of shoujo and josei would be an episode in itself, so we'll leave it at that for now!
Broadly, shoujo _tends_ to focus on romance and interpersonal relationships, and includes titles that you may know of like _Revolutionary Girl Utena_, _Sailor Moon_, _Fushigi Yuugi_ and _Ouran Host Club_. Josei _tends_ to focus on slice-of-life stories and more realistic relationships (as compared to idealized ones) and includes titles like _Kuragehime / Princess Jellyfish_, _Loveless_, _Paradise Kiss_, and _Honey and Clover_.
[// I also saw Yuri on Ice listed as Josei on My Anime List?? ]: #
Anecdotally, it would be easy to say now-ish is the time that Shoujo and Josei fandoms are most active with shows like Cardcaptor Sakura: Clear Card, Sailor Moon Crystal, and the [boom of Josei titles being released in North America](http://www.animefeminist.com/feature-josei-renaissance/).
...And [Google Trends data](https://trends.google.com/trends/explore?date=all&q=%2Fm%2F0751y) would mostly support that hypothesis. Interest in Shoujo and Josei manga by search volume had been mostly flat since 2004 until around 2013 where interest starting creeping up, with some large peaks around October 2014, May 2016, and April 2017.
**Size of Fandom:**
To give very rough approximations of size of the fandom (at varying levels of interest):
- The Sailor Moon series (highest selling shoujo series ever) has sold over 35 million copies worldwide
- In Japan, the top-selling Shoujo manga magazine has an average circulation of almost 1 000 000
- In Japan, the top-selling Josei manga magazine has an average circulation of almost 200 000
- In North America, Shojo Beat had an average circulation of almost 40 000 copies before being discontinued in 2009
We have limited demographic information this week due to the large surface area of the topic. That being said, we did manage to find some data on anime fans from the [International Anime Research Project](https://sites.google.com/site/animeresearch/past-results/2016-results). Of the more than 700 participants in the 2016 survey:
- 54.8% of participants identified as male
- The median age of participants was ~25
- Participants were fairly split on interest in interest in Josei: the largest group (~25%) did not know of the "genre", and roughly equal groups liked the genre and did not like the genre
- Participants overall liked Shoujo to some degree (~45%)
- Participants also indicated some of their other interest being: gamer (73.1%), sci-fi fan (50.1%), writer (38.1%), artist (33.2%), musician (23.3%), brony (7.9%), and furry (5.7%)
- The largest group preferred subtitles (49.5%), followed by folks who like both equally (40.4%)
[// interesting bit about significantly less hostile sexism and significantly less sexism ]: #
**Changes in Fandom:**
**Around the world:**
[Google Trends data](https://trends.google.com/trends/explore?date=all&q=%2Fm%2F0751y) lists the following countries as the top ten by search volume: Japan, Taiwan, Macau, Hong Kong, Phillipines, Chile, El Salvador, Singapore, Malaysia, Peru (Canada is 36th, and the United States of America is 46th).
### [Last Episode's](http://fanthropological.com/e/53-tales-of-fans/) Famous Last Words
In Japan, is Josei / Shoujo (Anime / Manga for girls) regarded as something filled with aspirational messages, or as a cultural edifice that tries to teach more traditional values?
Sailor Moon is the most popular Shoujo / Josei series.
[// I WAS RIGHT; ON BOTH COUNTS. Shoujo is generally more popular than Josei, and by sales, Sailor moon is TOPS ]: #
Is there a notable portion of the audience who are grown men (similar to Bronies)? If so, what's their deal?
What is the ratio of success of shoujo / josei to shonen (male equivalent) (by whatever measure)?
[// Shonen and Seinen are signficantly more successful by metrics such as sales, or magazine readership: ~2.7:1 for shonen / shojo manga magazine circulation by top groups, ~5:2 seinen / josei, of manga that has sold over 100 million copies, none are shoujo OR josei, and only 2 crack the 50 - 100 million copies ]: #
I'm wondering if it's very well regarded or if it's seen as something silly and frivolous in Japanese culture.
[// Just as serious as anything else? Hard to verify ]: #
[// "In Clothes Called Fat", Fumi Oshinaga "Ooku" ]: #
[// "All My Darling Daughters" Fumi Oshinaga]: #
[// Descending Stories: Showa Genroku Rakugo Shinju ]: #
[// Yona of the Dawn ]: #
### The Verdict
**T is in. Has some reading to do, especially josei.**
**G is in. Character driven stories is appealing.**
**Z is out.**
**Caitlin is in. DEEP in. There is no way out. Forever.**
### This week's spotlight
[// Women in Sakuga Programme... wrapped up by now? ]: #
[// might want to find an alternative? Anime Feminist! ]: #
> Anime Feminist explores Japanese pop culture through a feminist lens. This includes interviews, roundtable discussions, and visual analysis, broaching topics like gender, sexuality and representation. We have regular discussion posts, links round-ups, features and podcasts. We review new anime premieres every season, making sure to highlight any potential dealbreakers we can see for a feminist audience.
> — [Anime Feminist - About](http://www.animefeminist.com/about/)
**[Anime for Humanity](http://animeforhumanity.org/about/)**
> The mission of Anime For Humanity is to expand the awareness of Japanese animation to inspire the community to create good.
> We use Anime and Cosplay as tools to make a change for a good cause. Through hospitals, orphanages and disability center visitations, we engage children to express themselves artistically by providing joyful experiences and entertainment.
> — [Anime for Humanity - About](http://animeforhumanity.org/about/)
[// Plugs go here ]: #
### Famous Last Words
This week's famous last words around *next week's* fandom, Board Games!
The boom in board game creation over the last decade comes from people remembering unsatisfying board game experiences with Life, Trouble and Monopoly as a kid.
What board game has the most detailed, complicated, esoteric rules?
What is the most expensive non-monopoly board game (that is commercially available)?
~~...The change occured when Monopoly became public domain (and we started having dumb -opoly games)~~
Board games help popularize kickstarter.
## Where can you find us online?
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## What is "Fanthropological"?
How did you read this far without asking this question?!
Fanthropological is an anthropological (ish) podcast where we bring the fan's-eye view to you! Each week, we take a look at a different fandom, dig up interesting background, trivia, and history, and try to get to why it is that people are a fan. We also try to highlight good causes related to that fandom, and find interesting things that fans have created to share those to the world. Each episode is about an hour. Ish.
## Who is "The Nickscast"?
*We* are the Nickscast! Three products of late-80s / early-90s pop culture who love exploring fandom and everything geek ... who also happen to have been best buddies since high school, and all happen to be named Nick. Yes, we are super creative. Dare we say, the most creative.
We are Nick Green, Nick Terwoord, and Nick Zacharewicz: We started the Nickscast as a labour of love, and as a place to entertain and to discuss our love of fans and fandom, and all that is shiny and interesting in that realm. It's what lead us to start our first podcast, our satellite podcasts, Fanthropological, and so much more.
We want to help others learn more about different fandoms, and to create empathy with other fans: We dream of a world where other fans aren't "those Weird-o's", but just folks with different tastes. A world where fandom is full of discourse and analysis, and there are plenty of tools and resources to help. Fans building communities to do good in the world. *Because everyone's a fan.*
Thanks again to Caitlin Moore for taking the time to chat with us and share her knowledge and experience with us about shoujo and josei! We definitely have some recommendations to follow-up on, and it was informative to get more details about the shoujo boom in North America in the early 2000s (among other things).
- [Wikipedia - Shōjo manga](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sh%C5%8Djo_manga)
- [Wikipedia - Josei manga](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Josei_manga)
- [Wikipedia - Sailor Moon](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sailor_Moon)
- [Wikipedia - List of best-selling manga](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_best-selling_manga)
- [Fanlore - Shoujo](https://fanlore.org/wiki/Shoujo)
- [Fanlore - Josei](https://fanlore.org/wiki/Josei)
- [Kotaku - How to Identify the Basic Types of Anime and Manga](https://kotaku.com/how-to-identify-the-basic-types-of-anime-and-manga-1538285518)
- [Anime Feminist - (Feature) The Josei Renaissance](http://www.animefeminist.com/feature-josei-renaissance/)
- [International Anime Research Project - Anime Survey 2016 Preliminary Results](https://sites.google.com/site/animeresearch/past-results/2016-results)
- [r/anime - DAE prefer josei anime despite not being the target audience?](https://www.reddit.com/r/anime/comments/koftr/dae_prefer_josei_anime_despite_not_being_the/)
- [THAT SHOUJO MANGA BLOG - MAN UP! THE ROLE OF SHOUJO IN DEPICTING MEN, MASCULINITY AND RELATIONSHIPS](https://thatshoujomangablog.wordpress.com/2013/06/11/man-up-the-role-of-shoujo-in-depicting-men-masculinity-and-relationships/)
- [Black Nerd Problems - A Love Letter to Josei...](http://blacknerdproblems.com/a-love-letter-to-josei-manga/)
- [AnimeNewsNetwork - Why Are Anime Fans Obsessed with Steven Universe?](https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/feature/2015-07-31/why-are-anime-fans-obsessed-with-steven-universe/.91130)
- [Wayback Machine - Sailormoon: Manga (Comics) and Anime (Cartoon) Superheroine Meets Barbie: Global Entertainment Commodity Comes to the United States](http://web.archive.org/web/20120617030124/http://www.yorku.ca/jjenson/4303/readings/comics/sailormoon.pdf)
- [Wikipedia - List of Best-Selling Manga](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_best-selling_manga)
- [Goboiano - Here’s How Money Is Actually Made in Anime](http://goboiano.com/heres-money-actually-made-anime/)
- [Google Books - Shojo Manga and Its Acceptance: What Is the Power of Shojo Manga](https://books.google.ca/books?hl=en&lr=&id=tFLLCQAAQBAJ&oi=fnd&pg=PT45&dq=%22shojo+manga+and+its+acceptance%22+nozomi+masuda&ots=qFqPWZSk28&sig=DAa42xtF6kyxT32-yJtBwOeZSLc#v=onepage&q=%22shojo%20manga%20and%20its%20acceptance%22%20nozomi%20masuda&f=false)
- [IGN - Shojo Showdown](http://ca.ign.com/articles/2005/12/13/shojo-showdown)
- [The Japan Foundation - Japanese Book News (56): Shojo (Girls) Manga](www.jpf.go.jp/JF_Contents/GetImage/img_pdf/JBN56.pdf?ContentNo=9&SubsystemNo=1&FileName=img_pdf/JBN56.pdf)
- [Committee for the Revival & Promotion of Shojo Manga - The Magnificent Forty-Niners](https://www.en.matt-thorn.com/single-post/2017/05/31/The-Magnificent-Forty-Niners)
- [Chikushi U Repository - Problems of Gender in Shoujo Manga : A Critique of a Female Category](https://chikushi-u.repo.nii.ac.jp/?action=repository_action_common_download&item_id=811&item_no=1&attribute_id=21&file_no=1)
- [NECSUS - Representation or Misrepresentation?: British Media and Japanese Popular Culture](http://www.ingentaconnect.com/contentone/aup/necsus/2014/00000003/00000001/art00006?crawler=true)
- [OhioLINK Electronic Theses & Dissertations Center - Gender and Sexuality in Shoujo Manga: Undoing Heteronormative Expectations in Utena, Pet Shop of Horrors, and Angel Sanctuary](https://etd.ohiolink.edu/!etd.send_file?accession=bgsu1250882984&disposition=inline)
### Music / Sound
- Outro music, [“Deep Space Ballet”](http://teknoaxe.com/Link_Code_4.php?q=1338&Genre=Piano) by TeknoAXE, used under [CC BY 4.0](http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)
- All other music and sound for this week's episode were provided by Nick Green!
- ["Glasses"](https://thenounproject.com/term/glasses/132894) by [Anton Anuchin](https://thenounproject.com/antonwebium) used under [CC BY 3.0](http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/us/)
- ["Business Women"](https://thenounproject.com/icon/751113/) by [zidney](https://thenounproject.com/zidney0721) used under [CC BY 3.0](http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/us/)
- ["Manga"](https://thenounproject.com/icon/1285340/) by [Risa Nakajima](https://thenounproject.com/lsnk) used under [CC BY 3.0](http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/us/)