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Jung's Anima Theory and How it Relates to Crossdressing


An idealized (but not universal) history the crossdresser can be outlined as follows:

  • Each boy has traits that society considers feminine. When a boy displays these traits, they meet with disapproval. The boy represses these feminine traits, which become the anima.


  • The boy develops a normal male persona (mask), and enters the world. He goes to school and follows a career. The urge to actualize his repressed female potentials manifests itself in dreams and fantasy.


  • At midlife, he experiences unhappiness due to the unrealistic and limiting nature of his masculine persona. At this time he may feel a strong, even overpowering interest in wearing women's clothes, or of being a woman in fantasy. This urge is natural and healthy: it is because his completeness as a person requires expressing the potentials he has repressed.


  • Lacking societal cues that validate or guide his impulses, he experiences confusion. The world says crossdressing is wrong, but his 'heart' says it is right. Guilt, shame, moral concerns, and his own overly idealized view of masculinity constrain his crossdressing. He also asks questions like "Am I gay" and "Should I change my sex?"

    The stage of confusion can last years and decades. The crossdresser may dress often, delve into the culture of crossdressing, or even take female hormones. Or he may remain highly closeted. But the hallmark of this phase is that he remains confused and highly ambivalent, uncertain how to proceed.

    This seems a terminal point for many. However, the theories of Jung and others imply that this is not the proper end point, but merely arrested development.

If the crossdressing urge is really adaptive--a response by the organism to remove barriers that have effectively repressed half of the man's potentials--we can speculate that further developmental stages are possible:
  • The crossdresser recognizes the positive, healing meaning of crossdressing. At this point, crossdressing becomes supported, rather than rejected, by the ego; he may then pursue crossdressing as a constructive activity, now freed from previous moral constraints. But, by the same token, recognition of the positive meaning of the urges also brings an appreciation of sensible limits.


  • The crossdresser gradually experiences his "inner female." As he does, he finds parts that are of fundamental importance, and realizes that these transcend labels of 'male' or 'female'. He also learns to distinguish the positive, profound parts of the anima (spirituality, love, beauty, etc.) from the trivial (promiscuity, vanity, etc.).


  • For a while the crossdresser experiences his male and female personalities as distinct. Eventually he allows parts of the female into his ordinary male personality. This stage gradually merges with the next.


  • The inclusion of the female effects a change in the male personality, producing a new personality that is better than either alone. The female empowers and transforms the male. This stage is ongoing. The new self continues to grow--presumably in the direction of greater spirituality and service to others.
It is consistent with the anima theory that the urge to crossdress may diminish during these later stages. The crossdresser now understands that it was not the clothing or being a woman that he sought--these merely symbolized the deeper aspects of his personality he sought to express. Once he experiences and expresses these aspects directly, female clothing itself has less meaning and importance.

~ * ~


Theories about crossdressing recall the story of the blind men and the elephant. One man feels the elephants leg and says "An elephant is like a tree." Another feels the tail and says "No, an elephant is like a rope." Another feels the body and says, "No, an elephant is like a house."

The same is true with psychological theories of crossdressing. Any single theory explains, at best, only a part of what crossdressing is and what it means for a given person.

So any single theory is necessarily limited. But that having been said, the anima theory of Swiss psychologist Carl Jung, and how it may relate to crossdressing, nonetheless merits special attention.

The Anima Defined

Jung used the term "anima" to refer to the repressed, unconscious female aspects of a mans personality. The anima is a real thing--ideas, perceptions, impulses, patterns of brain neuron activity, etc. To understand the anima it helps to take a developmental perspective. Growing up, a little boy begins to experience the emergence of genetic potentials. Some emerge as spontaneous behaviors, others as instinctive responses to environmental events. Some manifest themselves as the urge to imitate. Some of these potentials are labeled "masculine" and some "feminine" by our society.

The boy soon finds that "feminine" behaviors and their associated impulses lead to trouble. If he shows undue interest in an article of female clothing--or worse, is inclined to try it on--he will, at the very least, encounter very concerned looks by his parents. In general, any behavior felt by his parents as contrary to male gender will meet with disapproval.

We can suppose that such expressions of disapproval powerfully shape a boy's personality. A child is highly attuned to even slight signs of approval or disapproval. And when it comes to a boy's showing signs of female feeling, thinking, or behavior--the disapproval may be especially strong--expressions of shock, fear, or disgust by a parent.

At this point most boys repress the impulses that led to the disapproved-of behavior. But the tendency to have the impulses remains. An interest in pretty clothing is a natural reaction. If it exists, the interest itself does not go away. But once the boy has learned that it is 'inappropriate', he does not express the associated behavior (suppression). Further, the interest may be interrupted before it reaches consciousness and a mental level where it can produce behavior (repression).

This scenario happens repeatedly. Eventually, the boy has an assortment of impulses and feelings, labeled "female", which are repressed. These, unfortunately, include some of his best characteristics: emotional vulnerability, compassion, sensitivity, aesthetics, bliss, and earth-groundedness, to name a few.

Jung used the word 'anima' to refer to the sum total of all these parts of the man's psyche that are considered in some way female and which are therefore repressed.

Jung did not explicitly consider crossdressing behavior. However, once his theory--which is quite plausible-- is understood, the implications for crossdressing follow fairly clearly.

Naturally, these impulses and potentials cannot be denied forever. They emerge partly, and in disguised form so as to elude the mechanisms of repression. For example, a boy may dream that he is a girl. And in dreams he may experience the totality of all these repressed thoughts and feelings.

Perhaps the repression of these tendencies produces a form of "arrested development." These impulses linger in a state of continual half-activation, never fully on, but unable to be turned off until they are expressed. One African tribe makes boys spend a period of time dressing as girls. This happens just before their 'rite of passage' into manhood. After two weeks of living as a girl, the boys are fairly fed up with it. It is possible something similar would occur in our society of boys were allowed to explore their feminine impulses; they might simply learn what there is to learn from the experience, then move on to other things.

At this point, we should consider what happens with "normal" male development--which, perhaps is not so normal at all. The usual dynamic is that the male eventually projects his repressed female side onto women in his life. Part of his attraction to women is that they display (or he imagines they do) some of his own female traits which he cannot let himself express. He experiences his own anima vicariously through his female partners and other women.

But these women have their own identities. They are who they are, not the man's projection. When a man projects his anima onto them, he is not seeing them as they really are, and he creates false expectations for them. That is bound to cause problems.

The Anima and the Soul

In Jung's theories, the anima is closely connected with the soul. This idea is consistent with religious imagery, which often represents the soul as feminine.

Possibly it is not so much that the soul is feminine, as that it is decidedly not masculine. In his book, "The Duality of Human Existence" David Bakan suggested there are two basic categories of human experience, which he called Agency and Communion. These correspond in many ways to Maleness and Femaleness, Yang and Yin, and other such opposites. The essence of Communion is merging of the personal identity with others, with Nature and the Cosmos, and in accepting "what is." The essence of Agency is individuality, independence, separation, and changing what is.

Spiritual traditions emphasize Communion. In these traditions, it is almost the precise aim for the soul to surrender the sense of isolated personal individuality in favor of greater recognition of connectedness to God and other souls.

Masculinity is the great agitator: it upsets tranquility with images of aggression, conquest and achievement. It is natural for men to long for a state freed from these disturbances.

As women are typically more free of such things, men associate serene mental states with being a woman. When a man wishes to be "a woman"--he may partly be wishing to experience these more spiritual states of mind.

The crossdresser may not realize this. But often he does notice some uncanny sense of mystery or "other worldliness" associated with his attempts to become a woman. The picture at the beginning of this essay captures this sense of mystery associated with the anima.

The Midlife Crisis

The crossdresser is apparently different than other men. He is willing to consciously experience parts of his repressed female psyche. How and why these men differ is not clear. Perhaps some men are genetically endowed with more of the traits that are considered female. Perhaps some had an early experience with crossdressing (a sister or mother who dressed them). Perhaps they are more adventurous when it comes to experimenting with gender. Or perhaps they are more introspective or intellectually different in some other way, such that they have greater awareness of repressed mental content.

But in all men, sooner or later, the anima starts to 'make noise.' When a person represses basically half of their self, they're bound to be unhappy. It is no accident that the urge to crossdress often emerges strongly in the mid-thirties, coincident with the "midlife identity crisis." At that stage a man begins to realize, consciously or not, that the overly idealized self he has constructed does not bring happiness. Various forms of self-examination and experimentation result.

Men respond to this midlife crisis in various ways. Some have affairs. Some get divorced. Some abandon their families. And--some start getting into crossdressing in a big way.

Jung's theories suggest that in order to be fully self-actualized, a man needs to 'integrate' his anima. He needs to get back in touch with his positive feminine characteristics. Crossdressing seems like a step to this.

The anima theory implies that a crossdresser can, once he allows his female traits back into awareness, proceed to the step of complete personality integration. Then he is fully equipped to live life. His various potentials are harmonized and able to work together. Such a person can accomplish great things. On the other hand, if integration does not occur, the man lives divided. A simple analogy would be that of like trying to drive a car with the brakes on. But perhaps a better analogy would be like trying to drive a car with two engines, each pulling the car in a different direction.

The idea then, is that the crossdresser does not literally wish to be a woman. He is trying to become himself fully. Crossdressing is, in a certain sense, a positive victory for the natural urge to integrate the personality, and to activate all potentials.

But one can easily see examples of how crossdressing leads to excess, or, at the least, fails to bring the crossdresser to a more balanced, happy, and effective way of life. How does the process go awry?

One answer that perhaps the crossdressing behavior becomes autonomous of the original goal: crossdressing becomes a habit, rather than a spontaneous response to the impulse for personal completion. The analytic mind says "I enjoy crossdressing. Let me plan and arrange my life to facilitate this." When it becomes merely a habit, perhaps crossdressing loses its power as a tool of the unconscious to effect growth.

In any case, crossdressing has secondary gains. For example, it is a way to escape reality. All people are prone to escapism, but the crossdresser is especially vulnerable. Crossdressing is secretive and therefore less likely to benefit from corrective support and feedback from friends, family, and society in general. Inasmuch as the crossdressing remains a detached and isolated part of the ego, there is nothing to say "This much is enough."

Personality Integration

The poem "Invictus" expresses epitomizes maleness untempered by the anima. It begins,

Out of the night that covers me
Black as the pit, from pole to pole
I thank whatever gods may be
for my unconquerable soul.

The poem, filled with images of defiance and struggle, was recited by Timothy McVeigh at his execution. McVeigh is a case in point: acting strictly from "male" logic, he concluded militant action was justified to redress certain actions of the United States government. Missing was the anima's input, and a realization that the taking of innocent life is unacceptable.

The male personality possesses drive, courage, endurance, and ambition. The male is a doer--a bold changer and shaper of the world. But without the anima's traits of love, compassion, intuition and patience, the male attributes are prone to misdirection.

Ideally, then, a man allows the anima into awareness. The combination of male and female exceeds the sum of the parts. The female has a transforming effect on the male. The traits of male agency remain. But they now achieve a true sense of purpose through guidance of the anima.

Beyond Crossdressing?

Crossdressing, then, may partly result from the man's instinctive effort to experience his anima, and integrate it into his personality. The crossdresser does not just wear women's clothes. He creates a new persona. This new persona allows him to realize his anima traits. For example, in crossdresser support groups one sees men hugging, chatting, complimenting one another, etc. The crossdressing gives an opportunity to express these behaviors, and the feelings associated with them.

If the crossdressing urge is really adaptive--a response by the organism to remove barriers that have effectively repressed half of the man's potentials--we can speculate that further developmental stages are possible:

  • The crossdresser recognizes the positive, healing meaning of crossdressing. At this point, crossdressing becomes supported, rather than rejected, by the ego; he may then pursue crossdressing as a constructive activity, now freed from previous moral constraints. But, by the same token, recognition of the positive meaning of the urges also brings an appreciation of sensible limits.


  • The crossdresser gradually experiences his "inner female." As he does, he finds parts that are of fundamental importance, and realizes that these transcend labels of 'male' or 'female'. He also learns to distinguish the positive, profound parts of the anima (spirituality, love, beauty, etc.) from the trivial (promiscuity, vanity, etc.).


  • For a while the crossdresser experiences his male and female personalities as distinct. Eventually he allows parts of the female into his ordinary male personality. This stage gradually merges with the next.


  • The inclusion of the female effects a change in the male personality, producing a new personality that is better than either alone. The female empowers and transforms the male. This stage is ongoing. The new self continues to grow--presumably in the direction of greater spirituality and service to others.

It is consistent with the anima theory that the urge to crossdress may diminish as the anima is integrated into the personality: once anima integration is accomplished, the crossdressing has less purpose. Perhaps some residual level of crossdressing will remain. But if so, the important thing is that the crossdresser has the behavior in perspective now. He can choose to crossdress or not. He is the final arbiter, and is not influenced by guilt, shame, or arbitrary social opinion. Rather, he chooses what is consistent with higher life goals.

~ * ~


To Find Out More

Try the excellent article, Observations about transgender people by Dr. Lin Fraser, a Jungian therapist. It's a little long, but just page to the section on crossdressers.

Jung's own writings are dense, and his theories tend to be "mystified" by others. Look for short introductions to his theories. Try the article on Carl Jung in the Encyclopedia Britannica. (Hint: your local library may have the encyclopedia or let you access it online; further the entire encyclopedia is available on CD ROM for about $50 US.)

Chapters on Jung in graduate texts on personality theory might also be good.


Return to Crossdressing Support
© 2001 Catherine Anderson,

Updated: October 28, 2001

Men who wear Kilts, Skirts and Sarongs

Is It True That Men Used To Wear Skirts etc?!

Yes, all the time in bygone times! The Romans wore skirts and conquered half the planet! Before the invention of trousers (about 300 years ago), men worldwide wore various forms of robes, dresses and skirts. Gradually after the invention of trousers, unbifurcated clothing became gradually associated with femininity - Why?! Skirted garments remained for some time though even if they were only worn on formal occasions.

As little as 100 years ago, Boys and Girls up to the age of 13 were dressed identically in dresses. Trousers are a very new invention and it still amazes me that men took to them so keenly with scant regard to the comfort that they were leaving behind.

What About Non Westernised Cultures, Did They Ditch Their Skirts As Well?

No, perhaps it was the heat, but in many countries within Asia, The Middle East, Africa as well as many Pacific islands, skirts for men is still considered normal attire. And of course, there are the Scots (so maybe the heat has nothing to do with it!)

In early 2000 when Fiji was in the news over the Military Coup the whole world saw men in skirts! Actually, these were not skirts, but rather the traditional Sulu - A normally colourful wrap around calf length skirt like garment worn by both men and women. The Sulu is the main item of clothing worn in Fiji. Its worn both for work and play.

Goto Thailand, Malaysia, Bali or Indonesia and discover that many men in these countries dress in colourful sarongs.

In India, Pakistan and various Arab countries, men wear dress like garments such as the Caftan and Djellaba.

The Scottish and Irish still wear their kilts. Skirted men are also normal in many african countries

How Long Have Women Been Wearing Trousers

Believe it or not, Trousers for women have only been accepted for about 50 years!! During the second world war while the men were away, the women were working in the factories fueling the war effort. Skirts are not particularly practical when working with moving machinery, so the women wore trousers while at work (but still wore skirts outside work!). After the war, women were not so keen to give up their trousers and so a select few continued to wear them. They still had a hard time getting trousers accepted as normal womens attire but 5 years later, women in trousers was a common sight and was considered normal.

The Men in skirts movement is currently at the same stage as the women in trousers movement was 50 years ago. If we manage to acheive complete acceptance in the 5 years that it took women then I will be overjoyed, but somehow I feel that our societies' inbuilt preducices against men in anything other than trousers means that we men will have to wait longer for our fashion freedom but some check out and other related sites for men's skirts of high quality.

It was arguable the humble denim jeans trouser helped women as it was the first trouser to be marketed as unisex. I believe that a denim skirt would stand the best chance as being accepted as a unisex garment - but the fashion houses that have introduced skirts for men still created junk and then wondered why it did not sell.

Can I buy skirts today that were designed for men?

Many fashion houses have tried producing mens skirts over the past 5 years. Some sold, some did not, and unfortunately, none of these manufacturers kept up the momentum or marketed the product very well.

Over the last 5 Years, H&M, C&A, Topman, Tommy Halfinger, The Gap, Levis, Hermer, Mountain Hardware, Utilikilts, New Yorker, and many independants have produced designs for mens skirts or Kilts.

Currently, Men In Time, Mountain Hardware, Utilikilts, 21st Century Kilts, AMOK, MIDAS Clothing and New Yorker have mens skirts and kilts available.

Why Rock the Boat?

This is the sort of question that only a man who has not tried clothing without a crotch would ask! The answer is for the most part, Comfort. Ask most skirt wearing women why they choose skirts over shorts or trousers and comfort is the answer you will get. As one fellow skirt wearer once said "A man in trousers is like an aircraft with the undercarrage down, and the undercarrage doors closed!" - Ouch! We got the whole man/women, trousers/skirt thing the wrong way around - trousers being anatomically correct for women, and anatomically incorrect for men.

There are of course other reasons why skirts are worn, they are a fun garment with infinite style possibilities. They could also be described as sensual.

Is It Just About Unbifurcated Clothing?

No, but this is an obvious place to start! This website is a vehicle to discuss anything in life where men are unessesarily limited. Mens lib if you like. Women have spent the past 200 years fighting for their rights. They have been successfull to the extent that todays women is as respected as todays man.

Unfortunately, men have not been fighting to maintain their rights, and while women have gone forward, men have gone backwards. Take a look at the forums and discover the wide range of Fashion Freedom and mens social subjects that we discuss.

The Insensitive Man
: A Philosophical Essay on Male Sexuality (2005)

Masahiro Morioka

>> About this book (general information / table of contents)
Go to: Preface Ch.1 Ch.2 Ch.3 Ch.4 Ch.5

Chapter 1: If Only They Wear Mini-skirts We don't Need Flesh-and-Blood Women Any More!?

Hence, I must accurately restate myself. That is to say, the most important thing is that the inside of the skirt is on the verge of visibility despite the fact that the woman intentionally tries to conceal it.....

*Translation by Jamie Grefe.
*Page numbers in the original are marked by [(preceding page) / (following page)].


This is What Men Are Like

    We call the ways of feeling or thinking about sex, which are deeply ingrained in ourselves, “sexuality.” It is hard to study the sexuality of men. Jun’ichi Watanabe talks about sexuality in his essay Otoko to Iumono [What the Nature of Men is Like] (Chuko Bunko 2001, 1st. ed. 1998), however, this is no more than a one-sided assumption about “what the nature of man is like.” Watanabe believes in the idea that the sexuality of men will never change after they are born.
    Against this notion, as far as I’m concerned, my sexuality dramatically changed when I became over the age of 30. This change of sexuality undermined the foundations of my identity and has had a lot of effect on my ways. Through my experience, I personally had a full realization that “what the nature of men is like” is a falsehood. The phrase “the nature of men is like this” means no more than the conspiracy among men such as “Let’s think of the nature of men as this and have fun and take it easy.”
    The study of male sexuality has only recently begun. In this chapter, I want to explore a theme, which I think about daily: the question of “why am I sexually aroused by mini-skirts?” I am going to talk about this based on my own experience. I will do this because not all men are aroused by mini-skirts. Speaking experientially, [12/13] I think I am certain that there are a high percentage of men attracted to mini-skirts.Women in mini-skirts captivate male characters in manga comics.Hostesses and race queens usually wear mini-skirts, too.
    Investigating the sexuality of oneself,one is accompanied by great pain and embarrassment. This would be the same for both men and women. I’ve been wondering about mini-skirts for a long time. Some ideas about mini-skirts have been developed, but there is still a lot that I don’t understand. Sometimes I experienced healing when I solved some of these enigmas.
    To begin with, I’ll introduce two impressive examples.
    We shot a scene at a transvestite club in Shinjuku 2-chome when I had a spot on a certain program for NHK Educational TV. At that club, transvestite men gathered and drank alcohol and had great conversation. The transvestites each had extremely interesting personalities. As I was interviewing them, one of them abruptly stood up from the sofa. Wearing a tight sexy mini-skirt, he had the same curves from the legs to the waist as a woman. When I saw that, I instinctively became sexually aroused. It was a shocking experience. Biologically, I should have recognized him as a man, because I came there to interview transvestite men. [13/14] However, I had a beautiful reaction to seeing that person’s mini-skirt.
    I have known that I really liked mini-skirts. Until that incident, I thought that I really liked women wearing mini-skirts. But, my way of thinking was very much upset. If a man wearing a mini-skirt has beautiful legs like a woman, I become sexually aroused. Why on earth do I feel this way?
    Here is another case from when I was a young man. This involves a young woman sitting on a train. Since she appeared to have a very short mini-skirt, I could not help glancing at her thighs. At that, my heart began to beat very fast and I became turned-on. However, when the train arrived at her station and she stood up, I noticed that what she was wearing was not a skirt but culottes. No sooner had I realized that fact than I cooled down.Also, I felt that my fantasy had been taken away, and it was as if I had been pushed into a kind of hell.
    why on earth did I feel this way? Things like short mini-skirts and culottes are likely to expose the symmetry of the thighs in a similar fashion. In the case of the hemline of short culottes, one is able to see the same square-shaped silhouette as a mini-skirt. In short, there is no change in the visible appearance of the lower half of the body. [14/15] The only change was that of my perception. That is to say, the fantasy that she was wearing a short mini-skirt was suddenly replaced by the disillusionment that she was wearing culottes.

Different Ways that Men and Women Think About Mini-Skirts

    What can we understand from these two cases?
    My conclusion is that “the function of giving meaning” plays an important role in these cases. In other words, an important point is the act of giving meaning in that what I saw was a mini-skirt, not culottes. A characteristic of the mini-skirt is not merely that the length is short. An important point is that a fantasy rang through a man’s head, specifically, the fantasy that from the hemline, he may catch a glimpse of a woman’s panties.
    In talking with women about mini-skirts, I notice that a considerably high amount of women do not understand my sexuality. When asking women, “why are men sexually attracted to mini-skirts?” the most popular answer is, “mini-skirts make legs look beautiful, don’t they? Therefore, men like them.” Of course, I, too, think that if I see slender or moderately full-figured legs, they are attractive. [15/16] While, at the same time, the reality of my being aroused by mini-skirts is a completely different thing. This is an instance where the expression, “men and women are on different wavelengths,” just slips out. It seems that when we synthesize the views of women, they think that men are sexually aroused when beautiful legs are exposed. And it seems that they desire to enhance the beauty of their legs to be gazed upon by men. However, in actuality, the only thing about mini-skirts that I am really particular about is the possibility of seeing panties.

The Importance of a Willfully Concealed Existence

    Now, for a different viewpoint, I’m going to explore tennis wear. As an extreme version of the mini-skirt, whenever there is movement, the “underskirt” becomes fully exposed. But, frankly speaking, this doesn’t “turn me on” at all. To me, it is pure and simple sportswear. So, from this, I wonder how sexy mini-skirts and tennis wear differ? The professional tennis player Martina Hingis intentionally printed a company’s logo on her underskirt. This becomes one clue. The style of tennis wear dress openly allows the public to see under the skirt. Therefore, I am not aroused. [16/17]
    In short, my sexuality is constructed in the way that something intentionally and apparently exposed does not arouse me at all. By that statement this may actually be similar to the sexuality of a person who commits rape. The rapist is particular about raping a woman who is averse to being raped. It is said that the rapist is not so aroused by a woman who is not averse to being raped. There might be a great similarity between the rapist and I in that the rapist is particular about whether or not the woman is averse to being raped, and I am particular about whether or not the woman conceals her body or openly reveals her body.
    But if I really like the inside to be concealed, it means that the long skirt should also be appealing to me because the long skirt perfectly conceals the body. But this is not true. Hence, I must accurately restate myself. That is to say, the most important thing is that the inside of the skirt is on the verge of visibility despite the fact that the woman intentionally tries to conceal it. In the case of Martina Hingis, despite what amount of the inside of the skirt may be exposed, it never arouses me because she doesn’t have any intention to conceal it.
    In the early 90’s, trendy “body conscious mini-skirts,” were a kind of clothing that excited my sexual inclinations. I feel embarrassed to reveal that I like them, because I am conscious that they are tasteless. The profundity of the body conscious mini-skirt is that whenever a woman would walk or sit down, the hemline of the skirt would be raised. This is because it is made of elastic materials. [17/18] Here, we see the extreme form of the mini-skirt. Namely, that no matter how much women may try to lower the hemline of the mini-skirt by their both hands, it naturally begins to rise against their will. Despite lowering the hemline of the skirt so as not to see, the skirt is naturally becoming raised so as to be able to see farther up. When my eyes are involuntarily swallowed up in these circumstances, sexual arousal to mini-skirts appears in my heart.

White Panties Under the Mini-Skirt

    At this point, I seriously wonder what is being concealed on the inside of the mini-skirt. Is it merely the female sexual organ? However, the answer is not so simple. What if a woman wears nothing under her skirt? At this point, we come up against a difficult problem, because “a mini-skirt and no panties” can work as one of men’s sexual arousal devices. I, too, can understand that sexual device. Hence, we will have to explore more carefully here.
    First of all, imagine a case that when I see a woman wearing a mini-skirt, I could directly see her sexual organ under the skirt. In this case, would I be sexually aroused? The answer is, “no.” I would not be sexually aroused. In the realm of the interior of the mini-skirt, my sexual response is limited to white panties. Speaking of my sexuality, panties in the mini-skirt must be white, and the female sexual organ must be covered-up with it. [18/19] It must be covered-up by the white cloth solemnly in a way that we cannot tell what really exists behind it. And this whole situation must be on the verge of visibility under the hemline of the mini-skirt. Namely, the point is that the concealed figure itself is on the verge of visibility.
    If this is the case, am I particular about the female sexual organ, itself, covered-up by the panties? This doesn’t seem to be the case. Here, I wish to recall my recently discussed episode. There was the same sexual arousal concerning the mini-skirt of the transvestite. At that time, I knew the person wearing the mini-skirt was biologically male. Therefore, I never imagined that there would be a female sexual organ inside the panties. However, sexual arousal occurred.
    But at the same time, we should keep in mind that the man wore “women’s” clothes. When men in Scotland wear micro-mini kilts, am I sexually aroused? Most likely, I am not.
    Thus, the point is the relationship between a woman’s skirt and a woman’s panties. Namely, the most important thing is to get the visual image that there is a woman in a mini-skirt before my eyes. There are no problems even if the person wearing a mini-skirt is a man, as long as that person looks like a woman. [19/20] This is because I am not sexually aroused toward a flesh-and-blood person who wears a mini-skirt.
    Of course, a feminist interpretation would be that men who see defenseless women wearing mini-skirts or high heels feel superiority and control, and these emotions sexually arouse men. This is certainly an understandable interpretation. However, in the case of the mini-skirt, is the interpretation of superiority and control a sufficient reason? I think those explanations would be good for rape and sadomasochism, but in the case of the mini-skirt, I don’t think that is a good enough explanation.

What Makes Me Aroused? – Dolls, Anime, and Manga

    Keeping this in mind, let’s advance with another point. If I am not truly aroused toward a flesh-and-blood person, is it possible, for example, that mannequins wearing mini-skirts arouse me? It is probable, but the amount of arousal will reduce. The reason for this is that mannequins are not in motion. Therefore, the dynamism between the motion of concealing and the motion of exposing, which is an important characteristic of the mini-skirt, becomes hard to see. Hence, in the case of mannequins, I have to reinforce that dynamism with my personal imagination. [20/21] Without intelligence, one cannot taste the sexual attraction of mannequins wearing mini-skirts.
    However, in the case of the “real doll,” which is made by Hollywood’s specially designed silicon materials, especially when it wears a mini-skirt, I might be aroused easily. Actually, there seem to be some people who are trying it. Then, what if we have mannequins wearing mini-skirts that can mechanically walk or sit like humans? In this case, I would be aroused just as in the case of a real woman. Since “real” female high-tech robots are already in their research stage, it won’t be long before they are available for retail consumption. Moreover, I think that there is a large amount of men who would like to see one wearing a mini-skirt. In Federico Fellini’s film, “Casanova,” there was a sex scene involving a moving female doll. “Casanova” selected a moving female doll as the final destination of a love affair filled journey. This really makes me think.
    Things like this are of course present in anime and manga and can be sexually arousing. In anime, movement can be represented. In the anime, “Neon Genesis Evangelion,” women usually appear wearing “micro mini-skirts.” Particularly, the character, Misato Katsuragi’s mini-skirt is impressive. We have to keep in mind the fact that in this anime masterpiece, which fully depicted the psychological drama hidden in the depths of young people, female characters were wearing very revealing mini-skirts. The sexuality of this new century’s men is built upon anime like this. [21/22] Even though they cannot find flesh-and-blood women, if they have characters like Misato Katsuragi, they can be easily aroused.
    Regarding mini-skirts in manga comic books, an introduction of this movement is needed. An example of one successful manga is Hiroki Yagami’s “G-Taste” (Kodansha) series. Yagami is also particular about his women wearing super tight mini-skirts. The bodies of his colorfully illustrated women feature uniforms and body conscious outfits. It is rare that his women are nude, and this is not what he wants to illustrate. His women always wear something. His aim is to create captivating illustrations of women’s outfits. Yagami developed his technique by illustrating countless creases in the mini-skirt for the purpose of introducing movement in manga. Actually, it seems unlikely, but the use of countless creases granted movement to the mini-skirts and, in this way, he succeeded in representing the dynamism between the motion of concealing and the motion of exposing.

As Long As They Wear Mini-Skirts, Flesh and Blood Women Are Not Necessary

    Panties are for covering the sexual organ of a woman. Why am I so utterly sexually aroused by the times when the cloth that covers a woman’s sexual organ flickers into possible visibility? It is extremely difficult to answer that question. The only thing I can say is that expecting the “possibility of seeing” a woman’s sexual organ does not sexually arouse me. [22/23] Quite the contrary, I get sexually aroused by the fact that even if the mini-skirt waves in the wind, the female sexual organ is covered-up by the panties and “seems impossible to see.” There is the thought that, “no matter how hard I try, it seems impossible to see,” and this situation makes me feel aroused.
    One more thing is the arousal of an almost religious emotion that we feel when faced with the circumstances that panties are on the verge of visibility. This is because people have traditionally sensed the appearance of “gods” in the sublime being of that which we can only catch a glimpse of but cannot, in our existence, grasp. This is the reason that the panties under the mini-skirt must be “white,” a sacred color. We can feel an unspeakably religious atmosphere in the scene that something covered by white cloth is on the verge of visibility under the hemline of a mini-skirt.
    The reason why men are so attracted to mini-skirts is that they can feel as if they are seeing a glimpse of something amazing in the shape of panties, namely, something transcending this world, inside the mini-skirt. During those times, flesh-and-blood women in mini-skirts, that is to say, real women who have will and emotions, are just an eyesore for men. The reason why men who gaze at mini-skirts are displeasing to women is not that the women feel they are looked on as prostitutes in mini-skirts, but that the exclusionary gaze, “as long as they wear mini-skirts, flesh-and-blood women are not necessary,” comes as a piercing gaze toward women. [23/24]
    We call the man who emits this gaze the “insensitive man,” and contemporary pathologies of rorikon and uniform fetishism are deeply connected to men’s insensitivity of this kind.


* The original academic version of this chapter was published in the Japanese Journal of Addiction and Family (Vol.17, No.4, 2000, pp.371-376). If you are interested please read it. Influenced by this paper, Ichiro Numazaki and Hiromi Murase published very interesting papers (Ichiro Numazaki, “Cultural Semiotics of Mini-skirts,” Journal of Contemporary Civilization Studies, Vol.4, 2001, pp.297-310. / Hiromi Murase, “Phenomenology of “the Sexual Body”,” Journal of Contemporary Civilization Studies, Vol.5, 2002, pp.348-359). My paper in 2000 seems to have influenced the people concerned. I sometimes come across similar expressions that I wrote in that paper.