Shōjo


Shōjo

nihongo|"Shōjo", "shojo" or "shoujo"|kanji: 少女|shōjo is a Japanese word originally derived from a Chinese expression written with the same characters.Because of the difficulty of inputting macrons on many computers, "shôjo" and "shöjo" are also common and acceptable renderings, although "shōjo" is preferred.)] The Chinese characters (少 & 女) literally mean "young/little/few" and "woman" respectively. Yuen Ren Chao and Lien Sheng Yong. 1962. "Concise Dictionary of Spoken Chinese." Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press. (No ISBN). 少 is radical #42, page 64. 女 is radical #38, page 54, meaning "woman" or "female." 女 can be used as either a noun or an adjective.] In Japanese, these kanji refer specifically to a young woman approximately 7-18 years old.Shogakukan Daijisen Editorial Staff (1998), nihongo|"Daijisen"|大辞泉 (Dictionary of the Japanese language), Revised Edition. Tokyo: Shogakukan. ISBN 978-4095012124.] "Shōjo" can often be translated with the English word "girl". [The word "girl" in English has complex meanings, and care is needed in its use. See Francoeur, R.T., Martha Cornog, Timothy Perper, and Norman A. Scherzer 1995 "The Complete Dictionary of Sexology, New Expanded Edition." New York: Continuum.]

The kanji compound nihongo2|少女 can also be pronounced "otome", although "otome" (meaning "maiden") is more commonly written with the kanji nihongo2|乙女.

Etymology

Like most kanji compounds, the term shōjo is borrowed from Classical Chinese characters, probably via Korea. The term 少女 is pronounced "shao nu" in Mandarin (pinyin romanization), "so nyŏ" in Korean (McCune-Reischauer romanization), and "shōjo" in Japanese (Hepburn romanization), although, as noted above, it can also be pronounced "otome" in Japanese.

The earliest surviving written record of the term 少女 is on the Book of the Later Han, published in China in the 5th century, in Chapter 86, The myth of Yao, referring to young girls. [ [http://dict.revised.moe.edu.tw/cgi-bin/newDict/dict.sh?cond=%A4%D6%A4k&pieceLen=50&fld=1&cat=&ukey=1830060051&serial=1&recNo=1&op=f&imgFont=1 Chinese Dictionary, Department of Education of Republic of China] ]

cquote|盤瓠種,昔帝嚳時患犬戎入寇, 乃訪募天下,有能得犬戎之將吳將軍頭者,購黃金千鎰,邑萬家,又妻以少女 [ [http://toyoshi.lit.nagoya-u.ac.jp/maruha/kanseki/tongdian187.html 後漢書 南蠻西南夷傳] Department of Asian History, Nagoya University Accessed 2008-09-14] . Translation: The myth of Yao: the country is being invaded by barbarians, the king is looking for warriors who are capable of taking the head of the general of the invading army, and for this the king will award (a) thousand Yi [ 1 Yi (鎰) equals 315 gram [http://xh.5156edu.com/show.php?id=14694 New Chinese dictionary online] ] of gold, (a) myriad of houses and young girl(s) as their wife/wives."

In the 7th century, the word was introduced into the Japanese language through the adoption of the Chinese-style Ritsuryō legal system, where it referred to females between the ages of 17 and 20. [ 清水民子『女の子はどう育つか : 少女期その世界と発達』新日本出版社、1989年4月、ISBN 4406017232 ]

Modern usage

In legal settings, "shōjo" is a subset of shōnen (meaning "minor") and refers to any female juvenile who has not reached the age of 20. [ [http://www.kensatsu.go.jp/gyoumu/shonen_jiken.htm Public Prosecutors Office, Japan] . ]

In Japan, the word "shōjo" has many applications outside of the law. It refers to anything of, for, or about school-age girls, often with romantic connotations.Shogakukan Dictionary Editorial Staff (2003), nihongo|"Tsukaikata no wakaru ruigo reikai jiten"|使い方の分かる類語例解辞典 ("A Dictionary of Synonyms in Japanese"), New Edition. Tokyo: Shogakukan. ISBN 978-4095055220.] Examples include "shōjo manga", "shōjo culture", [山崎まどか『オードリーとフランソワーズ-乙女カルチャー入門』(晶文社、ISBN 4794965184、2002年] "shōjo" novels, "shōjo" hobbies, and "shōjo" fashions, among others.

ee also

*Bishōjo
*Josei
*Lolicon
*Lolita
*Shōjo manga, a Japanese manga demographic
*Shoujocon, a former anime convention held annually from 2000-2003
*Shōnen, shōjo's male counterpart, includes legal definition of shōnen and shōjo
*Women in Japan
*Yuri
*Yamato Nadeshiko

Magazines

*"Shojo Beat", a shōjo manga magazine published in North America by Viz Media
*"Shōjo Comic", a shōjo manga magazine published twice monthly in Japan by Shogakukan since 1968
*"Shōjo Friend", a defunct manga magazine formerly published by Kodansha

Other works

*"Binetsu Shōjo", a shōjo manga series by Kaho Miyasaka
*"Bungaku Shōjo" (light novels), a collection of Japanese light novels by Mizuki Nomura.
*"Shōjo Sect", a Japanese adult manga series written and illustrated by manga author Ken Kurogane.

Footnotes

References


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Look at other dictionaries:

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  • Shôjo ai — Shōjo ai Le shōjo ai (少女愛, amour de jeunes filles) est du shōjo manga (bande dessinée japonaise pour fille) avec une pointe d amour en plus (en effet, en japonais, ai signifie amour). Il parle le plus souvent de relations sous entendues ou de… …   Wikipédia en Français

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  • Shojo — Shōjo (kanji: 少女, hiragana: しょうじょ) es un tipo de manga/anime dirigido a chicas, pero que también puede interesar a los chicos. La palabra significa chica joven . Tradicionalmente, el shōjo puro se centra en las historias de amor y un fuerte… …   Enciclopedia Universal


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