There’s an article about Japan’s herbivore men in today’s National Post.
Hotel worker Roshinante has no interest in actively pursuing women, is nonchalant about a career and finds cars a bore -- and he is not alone in opting for a quiet, uncompetitive lifestyle.
Roshinante, 31, who prefers the anonymity of his online handle, is one of a growing group of men dubbed "herbivorous boys" by the media, who are rejecting traditional masculinity when it comes to romance, jobs and consumption in an apparent reaction to the tougher economy.
It’s not just a few isolated men, but a huge national trend:
Almost half of 1,000 men aged 20-34 surveyed by market research firm M1 F1 Soken identified themselves as "herbivorous," defined literally as grass-eating but in this context as not being interested in flesh or passive about pursuing women.
It must be pretty easy to meet women in Japan if half of the men are not "actively pursuing women." That would create a quite favorable ratio for men.
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More about herbivore men in Slate:
Unlike earlier generations of Japanese men, they prefer not to make the first move, they like to split the bill, and they're not particularly motivated by sex. "I spent the night at one guy's house, and nothing happened—we just went to sleep!" moaned one incredulous woman on a TV program devoted to herbivores. "It's like something's missing with them," said Yoko Yatsu, a 34-year-old housewife, in an interview. "If they were more normal, they'd be more interested in women. They'd at least want to talk to women."
A whopping 75% of single men in their 20s and 30s consider themselves herbivores.
Some women are stepping up to the plate:
Japanese women are not taking the herbivores' indifference lightly. In response to the herbivorous boys' tepidity, "carnivorous girls" are taking matters into their own hands, pursuing men more aggressively. Also known as "hunters," these women could be seen as Japan's version of America's cougars.
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Some Japanese men are having sex with dolls:
When the 45-year-old, who uses a pseudonym of Ta-Bo, returns home, it's not a wife or girlfriend who await him, but a row of dolls lined up neatly on his sofa. … The man, who says he has had sex with five women but prefers the dolls, is one of a gradually increasing, though secretive, group of Japanese men who have given up on women.
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According to the Japan Times, there’s an unexpected benefit of having such a high percentage of herbivore men:
[T]he (per capita) rate of murders committed by men in their 20s in Japan is now the lowest in the world.
"Behind all this is the fading of social values that have driven men into violent acts. Men don't have to be violent any more, and that's why they can be herbivorous."