||By Eimi Graham
to how things were in the past in Japan, you can now find
novels, and believe it or not, they're meant for
teens and young women.
Unlike most of the other literature with gay themes, and popular
among mostly gay people or with someone who identifies with them, the
stuff in Japan is pretty different – it is gay fiction for young women
made by young women. In the
United States, this kind of novels or stories are called
"slash". In Japan, it's called "yaoi" or "boy's
of these novels have romance scenes and drawings on some pages – pretty much
like the standard books or magazines in Japan.
In compliance with the Japanese law, of course, the
are always covered in white, so nothing objectionable is ever shown.
These books are extremely popular among young women.
Some women that like yaoi seem to make their own
"pairings" of their favorite celebrities and write yaoi
fan-fiction. I'll list some
of the Japanese celebrities that are
rumored to be gay towards the end of
very famous place that gay people hang out in Japan is a place well known
as 2 cho-me (pronounced as nichome), located in the Shinjuku
entertainment district in Tokyo.
This section of Shinjuku is frequented by salarymen, and
cool Japanese people, including a lot of young women, who can go to
several entertainment establishments in the area.
There are several highly-regarded clubs in this area and are even
popular among western tourists.
The tough road for gays
word "Gay" is used in the Japanese language too and the meaning
is the same as in English, though we might use the same term for even
is the term used for someone who dresses up like a woman, but doesn't have any
surgery on his body and typically likes other men.
"New-half" is a new term that we have coined for a man
who has had gender
reassignment surgery on his body to
become a woman and continues to like
gays have taken a long time to come out of the closet and they still do
not seem to have the same freedom that they enjoy in some of the western
countries. Like anywhere else
in the world, the gay community is very diverse.
A visit to 2-chome is a testimony to this diversity.
Interestingly enough, some pubs and clubs for gay men have recently
started to employ only ‘new-half hostesses’ on lines of what is common
in regular clubs. Unfortunately,
it isn't easy to get surgery for
gender change in Japan.
Many of these people
save their money and have their surgery done
in a foreign country.
Have you ever heard of
a woman who likes gay men? In Japan, the slang for these kind of women are
of these women date "straight" men, but have friends that are
gay. Women in the west might
just happen to have male friends that are gay but it is unlikely that will
actively seek gay friends – which is the case in Japan.
list of some Japanese celebrities that are rumored to be gay. I've put a
"*" sign on the people which many people believe they are gay. I've also listed some comments on the people by gay men that
I spoke to as part of a random survey.
(Synthesizer player and member of the duo "Access")
“I think he is
really cute. I don't know how
old is he, but he looks very young. I've
heard that he also is only 167 cm and weighs 50kg, so he sometimes wears
women's clothing” – Yuuto, 22
“I've heard that the
members of Access are gay. I
mean, the way they act, the way they pose in the booklets of their CDs. I bet they're definitely gay” – Tsuyoshi, 28
*Hiroyuki Takami (Singer
and member of the duo "Access")
“The way he looks
and the way he sings, I think. It's
just also a feeling like I think this person is gay” – Satoshi, 19
“On the booklet that
came with this Access CD, there was this picture of Hiroyuki Takami and
Daisuke Asakura kinda hugging. Daisuke's
hand was over Hiroyuki's hand and Hiroyuki's other hand was around his
waist or whatever that place is” – Yuuya, 30
(Member of the comedian duo "Take 2")
“I've heard that he
was intimate with the other member of Take 2 sometime. But it's just that the other member of Take 2 is just
selfish. I mean, if I had a
chance to date Takahiro Azuma, I'd gladly accept the opportunity.
He's totally cute”
- Yoshifumi, 34
“He looks much
better than any other comedian on TV in Japan” – Ryo, 21
(Member of the group "Kinki kids")
“He actually said
that a guy actually approached him and said, "I wish I could marry
you". He says some gay
men want to flirt with him often.” – Yosuke, 37
“Some people think
he's cute, including me” – Ken, 29
*Amon Miyamoto (Actor
“I haven't heard any
rumors about him dating anybody” Takuya, 33
“He looks like a gay
– we can tell” Hiroaki, 41
of the rock band "L'Arc-en-Ciel")
“I'm not sure if
he's gay or not, but he looks kinda fem-boyish.
I've heard that the designer label he likes for clothing
"Hysteric Glamour" doesn't make a lot of men's clothing” –
“He looks a little
fem-boy, that's why I chose him. He's
kinda cute” Naoya, 30
Recommended links: Metrosexuals
in Japan Japanese
stereotypes of Japan Approaching
a lesbian woman
I date a bisexual girl
looks at gay porn
boyfriend be gay
Is Jake Pavelka gay
What is the future of Japan