Japan's "Herbivore Men"

Japan buzzword watch: "Herbivore Men." Not to be confused, I presume, with "vegan guys." Snip:
They are young, earn little and spend little, and take a keen interest in fashion and personal appearance -- meet the "herbivore men" of Japan. Author and pop culture columnist Maki Fukasawa coined the term in 2006 in a series of articles on marketing to a younger generation of Japanese men. She used it to describe some men who she said were changing the country's ideas about just what is -- a
Japan's 'herbivore men' -- less interested in sex, money (CNN, via @dannychoo)


  1. so why wouldn’t hipster/slacker/metrosexuals emerge? Just as a generation of young women disinterested in marriage?

    You can’t get people to play the game if it’s rigged.

  2. Would someone kindly explain the difference between a vegetarian and a ‘vegan’? Because vegan seems like a condensed version of vegetarian.

  3. The quoted part on boingboing seems to end prematurely. You would probably want to complete it to: “what is — and isn’t — masculine.”

    Also, vegetarians just don’t _eat_ any animals. Vegans avoid all animal products like leather, milk and eggs. I’m not sure if they play violins. (The bow has horse hairs in it.)

  4. Yeah RTFA, “herbivore” is slang for a type of male. This has very little to do with diet.

  5. Too much Soy in the diet is feminizing men because of Estrogen-like compounds in the Soy.
    Also, plastics have been found to leech more Estrogen-list compounds into food.

  6. I think our own Anderson Cooper exudes herbivorous charm. It’s not that he’s (apparently) bisexual, it’s just that I can’t fathom him getting hot and bothered. And money…well, he doesn’t need much of that, does he?

  7. Thank you, Giant Snow Man. What do giant snow people eat?
    Anti, I could have looked up ‘vegan’, and then I’d know. Now, thanks to Snowy, hundreds of people know. A vegan won’t drink milk or eat eggs or any animal by-products. Nice.
    I think violins used to use cat gut strings.

  8. @ TroofSeeker: Now hundreds of people may know that one fact, but unfortunately they still don’t know how to look up facts, and are still worse off. Or, if anything, they learned that the way to look up facts is to ask random people on BoingBoing, which is not a very effective way.

    An aside, I tried to find out whether letmewikipediathatforyou.com existed, and, surprise surprise, there it was. Unfortunately, it doesn’t do the nice passive-aggressive typing in for you. In fact, as far as I see, it doesn’t do anything but give you a search box.

  9. GiantSnowman 5: I’m not sure if they play violins.

    I’d think not. Some even take non-violins training.

  10. @ simonbarsinister

    you’re citing heresay put about by interested parties in the 90s, worried that soya was being touted as an alterative to certain kinds of food.

  11. Sam, Sam, Sammy SamSam.

    They know how to use Wikipedia, and a paper dictionary. But there are lazy people out here that just won’t bother. They come here to Boingtown, as I do, just killin’ time, seeing if there’s something interesting. But this time, unexpectedly, they learned something! Ha!

  12. @#11: Anderson Cooper is not “apparently” bisexual — he’s just plain old gay. Sorry.

  13. What is so bad about not seeking sexual conquests and anti-materialist leanings?

    Absolutely nothing. The problem is that when they say “herbivore” what they`re really meaning is passive aggressive, fashion obsessed, overly sensitive, shy flowers of men who instead of going out in the world and “taking it” as the masculine parlance might be, instead take a play from the Morrissey chapters of the book of life and act like that dude in `How Soon is Now?`

    Japanese people are already fairly passive agressive and shy as it is. These guys, if you`ve ever met one, are just damn annoying.

  14. >I’m a level seven vegan. I don’t eat anything that casts a shadow.

    Which means you’re free to eat any edible plant or animal on a sunless world. (Of course, you’ll complicate matters if you bring any artificial lighting. Use it sparingly.)

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