Aug. 23, 2020

Mary Reisel: "Compensated Dating" Researcher

Mary Reisel:
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Mary Reisel is an applied anthropologist, who has lived in Japan for nearly 20 years. Her main area of expertise is consumer psychology.  She is also a PhD. candidate from Meiji Gakuin University and her dissertation is on Japanese "Enjyo Kosai" also known as Compensated Dating and how it applies to consumption and E-Commerce. After ten years of researching this controversial subject, she explains how sexuality, intimacy, and desire are not only closely linked to consumerism but also hold the keys to everything in life. In this episode we get to hear the origins, the real motivation behind "Enjoy Kosai" and the current status of compensated dating in Japan. Other topics we discuss:

  • Why intimacy in Japan is very different than in the West
  • How "Enjyo Kosai" started out as a game among high-class women
  • A question from a Japanese student regarding "love" which changed her views
  • Marco Polo's role in her early interest in Asia and Japan
  • The foreign press influence in the image of "Enjyo Kosai"
  • "Enjyo Kosai" was never about sexual relations. . . 
  • The history and role of Japanese "Snacks" and Hostess bars
  • Is "Enjyo Kosai" female empowerment, therapy, or abuse?
  • How she did her research and how many interviews she conducted
  • How shopping and sex are related to the meaning of life
  • The deep psychological answer to consumerism and "Enjyo Kosai" 

Mary Reisel:
Nightwork: Sexuality, Pleasure, and Corporate Masculinity in a Tokyo Hostess Club:
gugu Mattress Company:
Dream Drive: