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Skinship (スキンシップ) is a wasei-eigo, or a Japanese word coined using English root origins, initially to describe the closeness between a mother and her child due to the physical contact of their naked skin. Contemporary use of the word includes the close relationship that develops between friends or coworkers when they share their nakedness at a public bathhouse (kōshū yokujō, which includes onsen and sentō), stripping away the social construct that would otherwise differentiate them as boss and employee or senior and junior. The earliest citation of this word appears in Nihon Kokugo Daijiten, 1971.

Skinship is also used by Koreans speaking English to describe a casual physical/sexual relationship.


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