Manga magazine demographics

Alex Leavitt and I exchanged a few tweets yesterday about his (excellent) Yotsuba&! article, and one point that came up was the way to obtain demographic data about manga magazines. I'm surprised it's not better-known, so it probably deserves its own how-to post. Here it is.

As you know, manga magazines are divided into several categories depending on their broad target demographic, mainly manga for boys (shounen), for girls (shoujo), for men (usually seinen, literally “young men”) and for women (josei or ladies' comics, although the latter term may refer to erotic titles as well). These broad categories are used for classification, especially in book shops, so it's useful to know where a certain manga or manga magazine belongs, even though it doesn't necessarily say much about the contents of said manga (these are not genres), nor in fact about the actual gender and age of readers as we will see.

Shoujo sosuu

At this very moment, I should be having a great time in the hot springs of Gunma prefecture, but a last minute volcanic eruption in Iceland kind of trashed my plans for the whole week, and I am rotting away in my room instead. So now that everything is canceled, I'll try to blog a little for a change.

For starters, I'd like to introduce the first volume of Shoujo sosuu, literally “young girl prime numbers.” It's the latest all-age manga by Nagatsuki Misoka (serialized in Kirara Forward) whom you may know for his LO-published story-heavy eromanga A day in the life, or his later 4-koma HR. Shoujo sosuu doesn't have a lot to do with prime numbers, but it certainly does with young girls. It's the everyday life story of Anzu and Sumire, two twin middle school girls with somewhat constrasting personalities, and of their older brother, their friends, their acquaintances and so on. A standard setting perhaps, but with a rather unique spin on several levels.

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