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-   -   Why are so many anime series fascinated with incest? (http://forums.animesuki.com/showthread.php?t=100182)

Neon01 2004-02-11 16:23

Why are so many anime series fascinated with incest?
 
I'm not jumping to conclusions and associating Japanese cultural standards to what I see presented in anime, but I can't help wondering about this. It's difficult for me to even watch shows like Onegai Twins because of the whole premise. Granted, I've not seen the whole thing and it could be just a huge misunderstanding, but still. Apparently dating a cousin is a peccadillo at worst too. What gives?

Hunter 2004-02-11 16:33

You can marry with your cousin even in the US with a exemption of a judge you know.

vio5555 2004-02-11 16:34

I don't know why its so hard to watch the shows with incest, they're just entertainment; you should be able to separate anime from reality, they sort of poke fun at the whole taboo of incest.

kj1980 2004-02-11 17:19

Quote:

Originally Posted by Neon01
I'm not jumping to conclusions and associating Japanese cultural standards to what I see presented in anime, but I can't help wondering about this. It's difficult for me to even watch shows like Onegai Twins because of the whole premise. Granted, I've not seen the whole thing and it could be just a huge misunderstanding, but still. Apparently dating a cousin is a peccadillo at worst too. What gives?

Due to historical reason(s) involving feudal daimyo lords in protecting their bloodline and forming strategic military alliances in pre-modern Japan, the issue of marrying first cousins is not considered to be incestous here. The current Japanese family code/law does not restrict relationships between first cousins.

asordidtale 2004-02-11 17:30

Laws shmaws...who cares if it's legal in the US or Japan??? What about the creep factor? How could anyone marry a family member?ember?

cf18 2004-02-11 17:31

It's actually only some American & European being weird. Marry with your cousin is quite common in the majority of the world.

Repulse 2004-02-11 18:55

Only about half of states in the US actually ban first cousin marriages, most of the others require that the couples get counselling or has some restrictions but otherwise it's perfectly fine. In Europe most countries don't have restrictions. So the creep factor is really something held by the minority of the world. First cousin marriages are actually quite common among many other cultures and in religions. In fact, there have been scientific studies that show that first cousin mates are actually very natural in nature and is in fact just as health if not healthier to the species than mating outside of the extended family. Many of history's greatest ppl are actually children to first cousins.

Spiggy 2004-02-11 22:11

Yea...it can be a tad weird when watching something that has incest, but you do have to realize that itis isn't based off our culture/morals/whatever. Would I...probably not, but would others...possibly. Just remember...it is entertainment, if you want the real thing....read the tabloids or some junk.

orochidp 2004-02-11 23:11

It's creepy, no matter how many laws OK it.

Iridi 2004-02-11 23:41

Quote:

Originally Posted by orochidp
It's creepy, no matter how many laws OK it.

Why is it creepy? Because it's a cultural taboo here in the U.S.
If you'd been raised elsewhere, it wouldn't be creepy at all...

Barring education, why is it creepy? The chances of genetic deformities aren't nearly so high among first cousins, so it's not even as evolutionarily disadvantageous as immediate-family incest (though it doesn't mix the gene pool sufficiently, and more importantly the social pool...)

X is a man, Y is a woman, the two should get together, no? :)
[and no, I'm not going to hit on my first cousins either... it's too creepy...]

kj1980 2004-02-11 23:48

Exactly. From my POV, I really don't understand the "creep factor" that is viewed so harshly in your standards.

It's all the matter of where you were raised in.

Slade xTekno 2004-02-12 00:10

Quote:

Originally Posted by kj1980
Exactly. From my POV, I really don't understand the "creep factor" that is viewed so harshly in your standards.

It's all the matter of where you were raised in.

Agreed. I also understand how it can be hard for most Americans to understand the concept of incest. To be simple, it's tradtion for some.

Yebyosh 2004-02-12 00:18

Quote:

Originally Posted by Slade xTekno
Agreed. I also understand how it can be hard for most Americans to understand the concept of incest. To be simple, it's tradtion for some.

Ancient Egyptian rulers comes to mind.

Biologically speaking incest is not desired for its high possibility of genetic mutations. On the other hand however it may also leads to reinforcement of other aspects (which is how we managed to breed various strains of animals).

Socially, incest is frowned upon because of the conception of sexual predatorship. The family is supposed to be the safest social unit you are supposed to have. To be 'preyed' upon sexually would be a betrayal of that trust, affecting the family as the basic unit of society. Therefore, most cultures have put incest as a no-no.

corp20 2004-02-12 00:28

My spin is that it shows laziness. Going to a family reunion to hook up it.... well queer. It decrease genetic diveristy over time and makes us (the human race) more susceptible to disease and genetic disorders. Oh yeah almost for got parasites. But its not harmful in the short term.

relentlessflame 2004-02-12 00:36

Quote:

Originally Posted by Slade xTekno
Agreed. I also understand how it can be hard for most Americans to understand the concept of incest. To be simple, it's tradtion for some.

I guess it must be something like that. I can understand why people are disgusted by pure incest, but what I don't understand is how come even the suggestion of it (like Onegai Twins), or the slightest hint of it (like Da Capo), can totally taint some people's opinions of a show. That's what I don't get.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Neon01
It's difficult for me to even watch shows like Onegai Twins because of the whole premise.

This is what I'm most curious about, because I simply don't understand at all. In Onegai Twins, for example, I thought it was kind of cute; it's not as if anything happened. Even in Da Capo, I was a bit surprised, but not freaked out in the slightest of the way thing turned out. I guess it just makes me wonder if I'm "missing" something that I wasn't freaked out in the slightest...

Oh well, as you say, Slade xTekno, it must just be "tradition" or something like that. Something that got so deeply engrained into one's consciousness over multiple generations, or something. I wonder how much of it has to do with family tradition, and how much of it has to do with personality of the individual... Hmm...

Quote:

Originally Posted by Yebyosh
Socially, incest is frowned upon because of the conception of sexual predatorship. The family is supposed to be the safest social unit you are supposed to have. To be 'preyed' upon sexually would be a betrayal of that trust, affecting the family as the basic unit of society. Therefore, most cultures have put incest as a no-no.

That is a very interesting point... I can certainly see the wrong in the abuse of trust, definitely... perhaps it was because of this problem that society became overly protective and came to regard all romantic relationships between extended family as "always wrong". It's sort of a pendulum effect - to negate one problem, you end up going a bit farther than you need the other way.

If we look in the animes that we are talking about (Onegai Twins, Da Capo, etc.), what you see has no "predatorship" at all. So, is it just the "weird" factor that is the root of the problem now, or does this "pendulum" effect still cloud our clear judgement (causes some to feel uneasy, when logically there is no reason to)?

Anyways, sorry - I'm just fascinated by psychology, and this is an interesting topic because it reveals a lot about our beliefs and values, and how different cultural opinions intersect (or don't).

Kyuven 2004-02-12 00:50

trace back any family line far enough and i bet you'll find some first cousin (or even SIBLING) mothers and fathers
look at Oedipus for instance :)

Muir Woods 2004-02-12 01:01

For those of you who likes to read, here's an interesting website on incest (don't worry, it's not explicit):
http://www.asa3.org/ASA/PSCF/1981/JA...1McCauley.html
It's from a Christian's point of view. But I'm surprised that the page wasn't as biased as I thought.

Oh, by the way, can anyone find a reliable website that shows the statistics of yearly incest cases in different countries? Incest could be more common than we think, and it would be interesting to see which country has the highest rate of incest. I tried searching but I keep finding porno instead. Although, there were some sick, albeit kinky stuff...

Fronzel 2004-02-12 02:40

What about Angel Sanctuary?

Spoiler:


Or any place where it's siblings instead of cousins?

Seiryuu 2004-02-12 11:33

I think I'll say a few things to clear things up about O. Twins, if someone hasn't watched it yet. Like in Teacher, Twins is meant to unoffensively examine the struggles people may have with what society considers to be questionable relationships. In this case, the main character, Kamishiro Maiku, is living with two girls, Miyafuji Miya and Onodera Karen. All three are adopted, with only one clue as to who they might have once been: a picture of a 2- or 3-yr-old boy and girl playing in a baby pool outside of a small cottage. All three came to the cottage to maybe find out about their past. Maiku rents the house, but since both girls have the picture, he suspects that one may be his twin sister(the other would not have any clear familial relationship to him). Rather than abandon a possible relative, he lets both stay with him in exchange for their helping around the house and cooking, etc. After a few episodes, the problem is clear: All three had grown very close, and the questioned relationship allows certain thoughts to come. If they're related they will be together forever, but if this beautiful girl and cool guy aren't related, then they could fall in love. All three struggle constantly with this, completely uncertain. When they think someone might not be related, the deep affection suddenly feels like a potential romance. Without wanting to, they all find themselves swinging unanchored between family and strangers, not knowing which they are, or which they wish to be. Of course in the end, they find who's who, and with questions of propriety cleared away, their uncertainty is washed away and they are all forced to directly face what they see in their hearts. The only thing "incest" in the story is the obligatory occurences, like catching a girl when she falls and finding your hand on her chest(and giving it the automatic squeeze), or falling ontop of one another, landing on one another's lips. The show examines a struggle with incest, but incest itself doesnt occur. So please stop saying that this show is about that. or at least find one of the threads that already exist on the subject.

relentlessflame 2004-02-12 11:59

Seiryuu, that is an extremely good summary of Onegai Twins - good job! That is exactly why I say that I don't understand at all why "incest" would bother people in that show. Nothing ever happens, and it's totally unoffensive; it's certainly not "about" that, as you say. Again, good job on the summary - very well written!


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