Japanese Women: New Feminist Perspectives on the Past, Present, and Future

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This volume presents, for the first time ever, a wide-ranging collection of essays on women in Japanese society written by Japanese women themselves. Drawing upon their day-to-day experiences as daughters, sisters, wives, mothers, students, and professionals living and working in Japanese society, Japanse scholars/writers describe and analyze the historical background, current status, and future prospects for Japanese women. Essays focus on the family, language, art, education, religion, the work place, and ...

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Overview

This volume presents, for the first time ever, a wide-ranging collection of essays on women in Japanese society written by Japanese women themselves. Drawing upon their day-to-day experiences as daughters, sisters, wives, mothers, students, and professionals living and working in Japanese society, Japanse scholars/writers describe and analyze the historical background, current status, and future prospects for Japanese women. Essays focus on the family, language, art, education, religion, the work place, and politics, and highlight the changes in attitudes and consciousness that are taking place in Japan today. This body of scholarship is unrivaled in scope; there is no comparable collection.

*Included in Japanese Women*

-Historian Sachiko Kaneko describes the struggle for women's suffrage and changes in the family system from the Meiji period through the late twentieth century in "The Struggle for Legal Rights and Reform."

-Orie Endo, in "Aspects of Sexism in the Japanese Language," analyzes unequal gender status and relationships in the language.

-Midori Wakakuwa reveals how "Three Women Artists of the Meiji Period (1868-1912)" escaped the confines of the paternalistic family system.

-In "Pornographic Culture and Sexual Violence," Kuniko Funabashi studies mass-produced visual media and discusses false notions of femininity and masculinity that have shaped behavior and promoted sexual violence in Japan.

-Mioko Fujeida profiles key figures in the early feminist movement during the Meiji-Taisho period in "Japan's First Phase of Feminism."


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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Twenty-seven essays by Japanese women (and three men, one an American) discuss the changes in women's status in Japan since the Meiji Restoration (1868). Divided into five partswomen's place in culture, education, marriage and family, work, and the futurethe essays range from historical studies of little-known women artists and writers through contemporary studies of sexist portrayals of women in the mass media, continuing gender stereotyping in schools, the pernicious effects of Japan's sex industry, and profiles of women politicians to assessments of the slowly changing attitudes of Japanese men. Most of the contributors are professors at Japanese universities; all of them have considerable backgrounds in women's studies and/or work in eliminating gender discrimination. The focus is very academic, and the translations are dry and sometimes awkward, but this comprehensive study is recommended for academic and larger public libraries.Katharine L. Kan, Aiea P.L., Hawaii
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781558610941
  • Publisher: Feminist Press at The City University of New York
  • Publication date: 8/28/1995
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 464
  • Product dimensions: 6.04 (w) x 9.02 (h) x 1.01 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface
Introduction
The Struggle for Legal Rights and Reforms: A Historical View 3
Women's Image and Place in Japanese Buddhism 15
Aspects of Sexism in Language 29
Who's Afraid of Amino Kiku? Gender Conflict and the Literary Canon 43
Three Women Artists of the Meiji Period (1868-1912): Reconsidering Their Significance from a Feminist Perspective 61
Women and Television: Portrayal of Women in the Mass Media 75
Challenges to Education for Girls and Women in Modern Japan: Past and Present 93
Sexism and Gender Stereotyping in Schools 107
College Women Today: Options and Dilemmas 125
Women's Studies: An Overview 155
Marriage and Family: Past and Present 183
The Mystique of Motherhood: A Key to Understanding Social Change and Family Problems in Japan 199
Care of the Elderly: A Women's Issue 213
The Changing Portrait of Japanese Men 229
Dialogue 231
Men on the Threshold of Change 247
Pornographic Culture and Sexual Violence 255
Domestic Violence 265
Female Workers: An Overview of Past and Current Trends 271
Work, Education, and the Family 295
The Plight of Asian Migrant Women Working in Japan's Sex Industry 309
Japan's First Phase of Feminism 323
The New Feminist Movement in Japan, 1970-1990 343
Legal Challenges to the Status Quo 353
From the Home to the Political Arena 365
Profiles of Two Assemblywomen 373
Aokage Takako: Housewife Turned Political Representative from Seikatsu Club Seikyo 374
Mitsui Mariko: An Avowed Feminist Assemblywoman 384
Selected Bibliography of English-Language Works since 1980 393
Appendix: Significant Dates in the Recent History of Women 407
Notes on Contributors 415
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