We take a look at some examples where we can see a distorted figure of a girl and a boy. As a matter of course, I don’t assume media or any kinds of artefact can portray what is a “girl” and what is a “boy” because even we, who are living in a real world, cannot figure out what is the real figure of boys and girls through face-to-face communications. However in my view, any kinds of artefact give us great tips to deepen our understanding.
See the transition of animation heroines from a very popular cartoon called Pocket Monster. There is also a bunch of million seller game software which is sold in the same name. This cartoon, set in the world of the game “Pocket Monsters,” is about adventurous journeys of a teenage boy and girl with Pocket Monsters. This animation first appeared on TV in 1997 and is still going on, so up to now 5 different seasons have been released. And basically this is an animation series for kids.
When you look at the transition of the heroines, easily you will notice minor changes in each season. The 1st girl (Kasumi) has a short hair and wear short pants and a sleeveless top. So she looks like more active than girly. The 2nd girl (Haruka) wears short leggings and a head scarf. Seemingly it’s getting more active or boyish. The 4th girl (I don’t know her name. When she appeared, I had already quit watching this cartoon.) looks a bit eccentric compared to the others. And the 5th girl looks slightly different as well. In my view, the last two changes clearly illustrate socio-, cultural change in Japanese girls. The first change coincides with the girls’ taste in their clothes and fashion. They tended to fancy more eccentric outfit. And the second change represents a demographical change of its viewers. Still it is mainly for little kids, but more and more grown-ups keep watching. That’s why the 5th girl looks more matured.
There analyses are quite interesting. Even heroines in a certain cartoons represent social and cultural changes. You can point out lots of causes such as commercialism and other sociological changes behind any artifacts.