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Desire, Lust and the Glimpse of Manga and Anime

Dr Keith Russell

Fanservice is the random and gratuitous display of a series of anticipated gestures common in Japanese comics (Manga) and animated cartoons (Anime). Fanservice gestures include such things as panty shots, and glimpses of breast.
These vagrant moments of libidinous possibility underwrite the anticipation of sensual fulfilment; they indicate the genuine access of the personal aesthetic experience to a realm and/or moment of reality in which the physical and the imaginative are co-extensive. The connection between the eye and desire is re-established in defiance of the general requirement in society to deny the glimpse.
This paper will explore ways of looking revealed in Anime and Manga, in relation to the desire and lust for objects. How much of this special seeing can be universalized in terms of design? How might this way of seeing be used to extend our understanding of personal aesthetic engagement with objects?


Manga, Anime, Glimpse, branding, Fanservice, Desire, lust, Gaze, Winnicott