An An

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An An
CategoriesWomen's magazine
PublisherMagazine House Ltd.
First issue20 March 1970
Based inTokyo

An An (stylized as an an) is a weekly Japanese women's lifestyle magazine. It is one of the earliest and popular women's magazines in Japan.[1][2] In 2009 it was described by Japan Today as a mega-popular women's magazine.[3] It is also one of the best-selling women's magazines in the country.[4]

History and profile[edit]

The magazine was started as a sister publication of French magazine Elle and was named as Elle Japon.[4][5] The first issue of the magazine was published on 20 March 1970.[6][7][8] The magazine was renamed as an an in 1982,[9] which was the name of a panda bear.[5] Its content was also changed to reflect the trends affecting Japanese women and their self-identity.[5]

At the end of the 1990s an an was published biweekly.[10] The magazine has its headquarters in Tokyo and is now published on a weekly basis on Tuesdays.[11][12] The publisher is Magazine House Ltd., a Tokyo based publishing company.[11][13] The company, which was also the founder of the magazine, was formerly named Heibun Shuppan.[14] Its target audience is women aged between 20 and 24 years old.[6] The magazine has two versions, a regular one and a cheaper one.[1]

Like other young women's magazines in Japan an an frequently features articles on fashion, cosmetics and relationships.[7] On the other hand, it emphasizes the visual aspect and advertisements rather than text.[15] Celebrities, including Jang Geun Suk, have appeared on its covers.[16] However, instead of focusing on gossip, an an and another women's magazine Non-no provide their readers with materials which have the aim of developing their self-identity.[17] In addition, since its inception an an has been instrumental in changing attitudes of young Japanese women as well as in reinforcing new and subversive identities.[18] In 1984 it began to publish an annual sex special issue.[19] Its April 1989 cover read "Become Beautiful through Sex" (sekkusu de kirei ni naru).[4][19]

In 1976 the male version of an an, Popeye magazine, was started.[15]

an an celebrated its publication of 2,000 issues with an exhibition at Tokyo Metro Omotesando station between 11 April and 17 April 2016.[20]


The circulation of an an was between 540,000 copies and 720,000 copies in the period of 1970 and 2009.[7] In the mid 1990s the magazine sold 650,000 copies.[10] In 2006 the magazine sold 280,683 copies.[21]


  1. ^ a b "Kindle celebrity image rights scandal hits anan magazine". Japan Trends. 21 September 2015. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
  2. ^ Kaori Shoji (12 May 2008). "Health-conscious Japanese women are running in style". The New York Times. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
  3. ^ "'Marriage-hunting' is latest buzzword". Japan Today. 1 March 2009. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
  4. ^ a b c Youna Kim (2012). Women and the Media in Asia: The Precarious Self. Palgrave Macmillan. p. 119. ISBN 978-0-230-29272-7.
  5. ^ a b c The Art of Seduction and Affect Economy: Neoliberal Class Struggle and Gender Politics in a Tokyo Host Club. 2008. p. 57. ISBN 978-0-549-64242-8.
  6. ^ a b Lise Skov; Brian Moeran (January 1995). Women, Media, and Consumption in Japan. University of Hawaii Press. p. 60. ISBN 978-0-8248-1776-3.
  7. ^ a b c Bryan S. Turner; Zheng Yangwen (2009). The Body in Asia. Berghahn Books. p. 104. ISBN 978-1-84545-966-6.
  8. ^ Emiko Ochiai (1997). "Decent Housewives and Sensual White Women". Japan Review (9): 151–169. JSTOR 25791006.
  9. ^ "Section 2: Fashion". National Diet Library. Retrieved 26 September 2016.
  10. ^ a b Aviad E. Raz (1999). Riding the Black Ship: Japan and Tokyo Disneyland. Harvard Univ Asia Center. p. 76. ISBN 978-0-674-76894-9.
  11. ^ a b "an an Magazine for Japan's Young Women". Japan Visitor Blog. 15 May 2014. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
  12. ^ The Far East and Australasia 2003. Psychology Press. 2002. p. 625. ISBN 978-1-85743-133-9.
  13. ^ Jonti Davies (14 February 2007). "Women's magazine enters Japanese DS market". engadget. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
  14. ^ Keiko Tanaka (May 2003). "The language of Japanese men's magazines: young men who don't want to get hurt". The Sociological Review. 51 (S1): 222–242. doi:10.1111/j.1467-954X.2003.tb03613.x. Retrieved 29 April 2016.
  15. ^ a b Barbara Németh (2014). "Masculinities in Japan" (PDF). Filozofická fakulta. Retrieved 29 April 2016.
  16. ^ "Jang Geun Suk poses for the cover of Japan's 'Anan'". Allkpop. 31 March 2011. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
  17. ^ Yoko Tokuhiro (2009). Marriage in Contemporary Japan. Routledge. p. 45. ISBN 978-1-135-23032-6.
  18. ^ Jennifer Robertson (2008). A Companion to the Anthropology of Japan. John Wiley & Sons. p. 320. ISBN 978-1-4051-4145-1.
  19. ^ a b Alexandra Hambleton (2012). "Women and Sexual Desire in the Japanese Popular Media". Women and the Media in Asia. Palgrave Macmillan UK. pp. 115–129. doi:10.1057/9781137024626_6. ISBN 978-1-349-33246-5.
  20. ^ "Anan Magazine Commemorates 2,000 Issues Publication with an Exhibit". Arama! Japan. Retrieved 28 April 2016.
  21. ^ "Manga Anthology Circulations 2004-2006". ComiPress. 27 December 2007. Retrieved 6 February 2017.

External links[edit]