By Joleen Blom
Mediated IntimaciesAug 01, 2022
Episode 5 - Family and reproductivity issues in "My husband won't fit" with Mayara Caetano
This episode I talk with Mayara Caetano about the Japanese drama series "My husband won't fit" (Otto no chinpo ga hairanai) (2019) on Netflix. This series shows fictional intimacy and reproductive issues between Kumiko and Kenichi who are unable to have penetrative vaginal sex. We connect their issues to the general situation of family and reproductive issues in the early 2000s of Japan. Maya wrote the following notes to accompany this episode:
"Although the conversation was set to have a casual and light tone, it is a serious discussion that came to the forefront of the news cycle and social media. So, I would like to comment and share some readings from Japanese and Japanese American authors to expand the conversation.
Setsu Shigematsu (2012) is the author of the book ‘Scream from the Shadows: The Women's Liberation Movement in Japan’ which talks about the ūman ribu group and its contributions to the women’s movement in the country. The author states that the Japanese family system – ie – will be fundamental to understanding the implications of imperialistic perspectives, gender roles, sex, and sexuality, as well as reproductive rights. Its activists were involved in the movements for reproductive rights with an intersection of disabilities and legislation, which leads me to suggest the book Contraceptive Diplomacy: Reproductive Politics and Imperial Ambitions in the United States and Japan from Takeuchi-Demirci (2018). Here is an interview with the author.
The book discusses some of the contraceptive methods adopted and legislated in Japan throughout its history and its inter-relations with the United States. The book will mention Margaret Sanger – the founder of today's Planned Parenthood – and the interrelations and implications of decisions about body autonomy. In Rachel Sharp’s article, there is a condensed history of the organisation and its involvement in the disputes for reproductive rights in the US, which does not restrict the abortion right but also contraceptives, and sex education. Furthermore, the article addressed the past of the organisation and Sanger’s with eugenics, conservative, and racist groups, which happen to endanger and harm populations. This historical fact is not omitted by Planned Parenthood and does not represent their actions, services, beliefs, and advocacy.
When we recorded this episode, Japan had recently allowed the commercialisation of abortion pills, through restricted to the authorisation of a male partner (McCurry, 2022). Several legal guidelines and decision related to reproductive rights are framed in the arrengement of married heterosexual couples, so there are numerous groups and contexts outside of the Japanese legal frame. That does not mean that people will not follow their own wishes, but are uncovered and vulnerable. So, considering the abovementioned book and article references, the decision made on 24 June 2022 to overturn Roe vs. Wade and the related decisions in the US bring worrisome precedents."
McCurry, Justin. 2022. Japan to approve abortion pill – but partner’s consent will be required. The Guardian. Available at: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/may/31/japan-to-approve-abortion-pill-but-partners-consent-will-be-required
Shigematsu, Setsu. 2012. Scream from the Shadows: The Women's Liberation Movement in Japan. Minnesota Press.
Takeuchi-Demirci, Aiko. 2018. Contraceptive Diplomacy: Reproductive Politics and Imperial Ambitions in the United States and Japan. Redwood City: Stanford University Press.
Episode 4 - On our intimate relationship with God in video games with Lars de Wildt
During this episode, I speak with Lars de Wildt, postdoctoral researcher in media studies at KU Leuven, about our intimate relationship with God and how games let us engage with Christianity in games. This episode was recorded back in November 2021, so some in-episode references could be a tad old.
de Wildt, L., Aupers, S. (2020). Pop Theology: Forum Discussions on Religion in Videogames. Information Communication & Society, 23 (10), 1444-1462.
de Wildt, L., Aupers, S. (2021). Marketable Religion: How Game Company Ubisoft Commodified Religion for a Global Audience. Journal Of Consumer Culture.
Ubisoft. 2007 - 2020. Assassin's Creed series.
Episode 3 - Affective Reception and Characters with Nicolle Lamerichs
After an unexpectedly long hiatus, I talk with Nicole Lamerichs, senior researcher at the HKU in The Netherlands. We discuss about our rising interest and engagement with fictional characters, fan's affective reception of them, and the (para-)social relationships we build with them in dating simulators. This episode was recorded on October 28th, 2021, so some references are currently older than they were when we speak about them in the episode.
Articles, books and presentations:
Lamerichs, Nicolle. Productive Fandom: Intermediality and Affective Reception in Fan Cultures. Transmedia: Participatory Culture and Media Convergence. Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 2018.
Lamerichs, Nicolle. ‘Characters of the Future. Machine Learning, Data, and Personality’. Image, Recontextualizing Characters, nr. 29 (januari 2019): 98–117.
Derrickson. 2016. Doctor Strange.
Fowler. 2020. Sonic the Hedgehog.
Kitfox Games. 2021. Boyfriend Dungeon.
Schaeffer. 2021. WandaVision
Ubisoft. 2018. Assassin’s Creed Odyssey.
Episode 2 - The Fourth Wall in Games with Agata Waszkiewicz
Today I talk with Agata Waszkiewicz, a doctoral candidate at Maria Curie-Skłodowska University in Lublin. We discuss the (non-)existence of the fourth wall in theatre, film, and digital games, and how it creates intimacy between player and avatar in the games Bury me my Love (The Pixel Hunt, 2019), and A Normal Lost Phone (Diane Landais, 2018). How do these games break the fourth wall exactly? Agata will tell you!
Dys4ia (Anna Anthropy 2012)
Deadpool (Activision 2013) (standalone Deadpool game)
Marvel vs Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds (Capcom 2011)
Mystic Messenger (Cheritz, 2016)
Pony Island 9Daniel Mullins Games, 2016)
Tell me Why (DONTNOD Entertainment, 2020)
The Hex (Daniel Mullins Games, 2018)
Articles and Books:
Conway, S. - A circular wall? Reformulating the fourth wall for videogames (2010)
Jørgensen, K. - Game World Interfaces (2013)
Waszkiewix, A. - TOGETHER THEY ARE TWOFOLD”: PLAYER-AVATAR RELATIONSHIP BEYOND THE FOURTH WALL (2020)
Episode 1 - Otome Games with Susana Tosca
In this first episode of this podcast on mediated intimacies, I talk with Susana Tosca, associate professor at Roskilde University in Denmark. We talk about otome games, Japanese video games in which women can date a pool of handsome men. What are otome games exactly, and why do we play them, and how can we study them in the field of game studies? You'll find Susana's answers in this episode!
Games:Angelique (Ruby Party, 1994) Hakuoki (Idea Factory, 2008) Psychedelica of the Black Butterfly (Idea Factory, 2018) Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors (Chunsoft, 2010) Shall We Date? series
Books and articles:Reading the Romance (Radway, 1984) Transmedial worlds in everyday life (Tosca and Klastrup, 2019) Appropriating the Shinsengumi: Hakuoki Fan Fiction as Transmedial/Transcultural Exploration (Tosca, 2021) Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema (Mulvey, 1975) --on the male gaze in cinema