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1

Womansword: What Japanese Words Say About Women by Kittredge Cherry

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Description

Womansword is an insightful look at Japanese words concerning women and what they reveal about the status of women in modern Japan. In a collection of short, lively essays, author Kittredge Cherry considers the connotations, usage, and context of several hundred common words and phrases related to female identity, girlhood, marriage, mothering, working, sex, and aging. These Japanese words offer a new perspective on issues that are central to the lives of women everywhere.

We learn, for instance, that an "intruder wife" is one who snags a husband by cooking for him every night, cleaning up for him, and generally coddling him till he realizes he can't live without her (but who lets him do the actual proposing); that Barbie didn't sell well in Japan till she was transformed into a cuter, shorter, less glamorous, younger version; that families with no sons to carry on the family name sometimes "adopt" one by marrying their daughter to a man who agrees to take their name, join their household, and generally adapt to their ways; that "honorable bag" (ofukuro) is an affectionate term a son may use to refer informally to his mother; and that people do not usually greet close relatives - even after a long separation - with a hug, but with a bow.

Womansword is a thought-provoking book that paints a vivid picture of contemporary Japanese women, in all their layered and often contradictory roles.


Product details

Goodreads rating: 3.83

Condition: Used - very good

Format: Paperback, 151 pages

Dimensions: 152 x 210 x 13mm, 314g

Publication date: 1 May 1987

Publisher: Kodansha International 

ISBN-13: 9780870117947