Links – Gender equality in Japan


A BBC article states that Japan is one of the worst in terms of gender equality among developed countries, especially for mothers – link.

This is some thing I have been saying. We often have a tendency to assume that all economically developed countries have gender equality. They do not.  Yes, money does bring in a lot of gender equality but it does not eliminate patriarchy completely. Add to that a culture of not really being critical of your own culture to foreigners and you would barely find out unless you have really observed it yourself.

  1. I am saddened at the number of people who will have 3-4 kids because they are trying for a son.
  2. Men rarely do women’s jobs (especially the older generation) – cooking/ helping in the house unless required to and even modern young women accept it as normal that their dads do not or will not help.
  3. Sexist statements do not really strike as something offensive or wrong to many women. 
  4. Women feel the need to be defined by a man in their lives.
  5. Low confidence in women because they are women.

Your thoughts?

12 thoughts on “Links – Gender equality in Japan

  1. My husband travels to Japan often on business and he says he sees hardly any older women (like over 35) at work. And very very few in positions with authority. He says it’s almost as if they work just to meet young men, and once they hook up and get married, they stay home and opt out of the work place (almost uniformly).
    Another strange thing he mentioned is – several men are away the entire week working in another distant area (they sleep and eat there) and go home for weekends. The women seem okay/accepting with this.

    1. “several men are away the entire week working in another distant area” – they could be having mistresses and the wives may know. As the wives do not have any financial independence, they pretend not to know.

  2. I have read a lot about the culture of inequality in Japan. My husband visited Japan as a grad student and he was shocked that when he and his advisor were invited to one of the scientist’s homes, his wife did not come out of the kitchen because she was not supposed to come and sit with men!!

  3. Actually in all honesty i was shocked at the sexist french sense of humor when i moved here. Things considered funny arent so funny when translated. It cant all be lost in translation can it; It can not be funny but not turn offensive when translated. But they think its funny men and women alike. And objectifying women is considered ok to the extent that its not considered wrong for a drunk educated guy to harass some lady for her number and the friends with him wont even stop hiim. On the contrary they think its offensive you dont respond to the appreciation.:p .Its common humor to pass comments such as like a modern day woman who cannot cook or even among youngsters to comment few women dead wouldnt change the world. Well atleast in academia some women do end up giving the whole community by being overly aggresive but then thats stereotyping pretty much.The whole developed country better than developing ones is so not true. We just presume it would be but education doesnt always make people think

      1. I keep clicking post before i finish ..:P well even here once ur married people keep bugging u where ur ring is why u rnt moving to ur husbands place pronto… blah blah same old same old nothing new there

      2. This was an interesting read. We are still a work in progress in terms of gender equality. Developed countries may have reached there (or have they?) in terms of policies but we would need a lot more time in terms of attitudes. Well, the same goes for equality of different races or ethnicities…

  4. That is awful, I would have never thought Japan to be one of the worst. It is really unfortunate to read that working mothers have a stigma against them – clearly working fathers do not. Also really sad to read that the average Japanese father doesn’t spend any time with their kids.

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