Mark Driscoll


On his book Absolute Erotic, Absolute Grotesque: The Living, Dead, and Undead in Japan’s Imperialism, 1895–1945

Cover Interview of February 08, 2011

Editor’s note

Originally, this interview ran on the Rorotoko cover page under the headline

“A cultural interpretation of imperialist Japanese sex practices in Asia.”

We highlighted two quotes.

On the first page:

“Between 30,000 and 60,000 young Japanese women, most of them kidnapped, were brought to Asia from 1885-1920 to do sex work in the booming Japanese commercial areas in Korea, Northeast China, Shanghai, Hong Kong and Singapore.  The appeal they had for male consumers led these same consumers to buy Japanese food, liquor, and other merchandise and stimulated a general ‘desire’ for things Japanese.”

On the second:

“The mass culture of the erotic-grotesque ended up contributing to the atrocities that Japanese men committed in China and Southeast Asia.”