The Departing Body: Creation of the Neutral in-between Sensual Bodies

Fusako Innami

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper investigates the Japanese concept of ma/aida, the space in-between, discussed by French author Roland Barthes as the Neutral, not signifying the medium of the opposite poles but the bare existence. It first analyzes how the discourse of contiguous relationships and the space between others has functioned in modern and postwar Japan, and further employs the works of the Japanese female writer Matsuura Rieko as counterexamples, with particular emphasis on the space between the sensual and the sexual. It provides a fresh view on the conceptions of space and indirectness between and within the body.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)111-130
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Asian and African Studies
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2011


  • space-in-between
  • selfhood
  • sensual and sexual
  • passivity
  • skinship

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