Girls-like boys, Otoko No Ko Club and a new Japanese art of cross-dressing

I love Japan… Though since I’ve never been to that country, the more correct way to express what I mean is “I love their balancing on the razor thin line between perfectness and madness”. And making art from any both useful and useless hobbies.

If you think of manga, anime, chindogu, cosplay, zentai, kigurumi, etc., this is the only country where this “hobby” could have appeared. Where else? I wonder if “dressing up”, associating yourself with a character or a character with the opposite sex is one of the way to break free from strict rules, traditions and obligations. “No, I’m not an ordinary boring 14yo schoolboy. I’m a supergirl! With a helluva magic power!”

What I’m talking about is cross-dressing in Japan. In my opinion, or at least as I understand it (please correct me if I’m wrong), the difference between the Thai and the Japanese versions is that the former is more about “showbiz” and the latter is rather for fun, art and “freedom”. And, hey, if you are a good looking slender boy, there’s a good chance, that as a girl you will look good too. Why not to double the pleasure?

It began with “otaku” (manga-obsessed) males, who cosplayed female characters.Then (three-four years ago) cross-dressing gained in popularity among non-cosplayers. And the next step was “Otoko no ko Club” magazine dedicated to boys who would like to look like pretty girls.

The term “otoko no ko” or “otokonoko” is a sort of a linguistic trap (pun intended). Have a look at the hieroglyphs:

男 (otoko) man
女 (on’na) woman
の (no) of
子 (ko) child

男の子 (otokonoko) boy (literally a kid of a man or a man as a child)
女の子 (on’nanoko) girl

So, otokonoko written as 男の子 is just a boy, but if you replace the last “character” with 娘 – daughter, girl (which is alone pronounced as “musume” and in combination as “ko”), you will get:

男の娘 or オトコノコ (otokonoko) a man as a girl

Our Japanese speakers, please chime in here!

Some more related words for your information:

カワイイ (kawaii) hmm… kawaii 😉
女装 (josou ) shemale, crossdresser
鰤子 (burikko) child-like woman
御釜 (okama) male transvestite
女装子 (jososhi) you can translate this now, right? 😉

See also Searching in Japanese

More photos of the same guy on youtube:

If he’s indeed “he” … simply unbelievable…

3 thoughts on “Girls-like boys, Otoko No Ko Club and a new Japanese art of cross-dressing”

  1. i came across this a long time ago… it made me laugh pretty good… however he is excellent at bass. and it is related to your post sort of

  2. ttbm ” wrote:

    he is excellent at bass.

    He also plays 5-string bass and a “normal” guitar. No fretless bass, though.

    And he looks like Jacky Chan and has got a good sense of humor 😉

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