Japan's ruling party welcomes women to attend meetings, but only if they observe and remain silent

Originally published at: Japan's ruling party welcomes women to attend meetings, but only if they observe and remain silent | Boing Boing


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They could submit their opinions to the secretariat office afterward.


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Japanese female teachers still served me tea on occasion if I remember correctly.

They are still massively behind on this issue, and wonder why the world finds them so out of touch.


I wonder how much longer the ruling party really has on top in Japan? Something has to change. Abe was popular mostly because he didn’t really do anything, but the new guy is actively making things worse and just keeps fucking up.


Women only “have difficulty finishing” when men are clueless and have no idea what to do in the first place.

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In other news, old fart Japanese politicians say yet another stupid thing about women. #bestseenbutnotheard #babymakingmachines #sorryIgotcalledoutforsayingthat


Saw this on a long walk in Tokyo last time I was there, and was optimistic:

But watching the Mori remarks and subsequent events has been disappointing.


Heh, so they do it in Japan too, when in a hole of your own making, keep on digging! Wakaran.
It’s a bit of a companion piece with the Texas mayor telling everyone “we don’ owe you nuffin!”. One would think that career politicians would know not to ruffle feathers… not enraging constituents… being as oleaginous as possible in order to keep their positions safe, but these guys just invite raspberries and brickbats from all directions.


This is why Hello Kitty has no mouth.

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Oh yeah. I had to take my turn on occasion. We made tea for everyone in the teacher office, mostly women, but the odd man as well.

It’s a tough thing to shake when it follows you everywhere. Get together at the community center? Better get ready to pour beer. Mochi making day? Head to the kitchen to handle the assembly and serving. It’s nothing ever explicitly asked for, so it’s difficult to address directly. Having to explain over and over that my husband was a house husband (same pronunciation as house wife, different characters) was exhausting.

I guess what really stands in the way is the not insignificant number of Japanese women who feel men get the short end of the stick of gender expectations. It’s a different take for sure.


One of the reasons why the Liberal Democratic Party (which is neither liberal nor democratic, nor much fun as a party) has remained in power for so long is that the opposition parties are a mess, always fracturing into countless new parties with no clear or coherent leadership. It is genuinely difficult even to keep track of which parties are fielding candidates, and a lot of candidates are representing parties that did not even exist six months ago.

Also, they have rural districts pretty much locked down, and they caucus with a party called Kohmeito, which is effectively the political wing of a Buddhist sect. I know people who are part of this sect, and they really get out the vote.

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Sounds exactly like Japanese national politics. They’re practically a stereotype of themselves in that respect.

I bet the average age of the party assembly is above 70, and none of them are capable of unlocking their iPhones.

Honestly we’re almost as bad in the US. We just don’t tend to live as long on average so we have slightly better turnover from the geriatric party leadership finally doing us all a favor.


Does this mean you can’t determine the sex of the house worker when spoken about, but can when read? I don’t know what this means, if anything. I just find it interesting.

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It’s 専業主婦 for housewife and 専業主夫 for house husband. Both just happen to be read as “Sengyou Shufu.” This is a very common phenomenon in the Japanese language (homophones that are written differently) and leads to a lot of confusion, but is usually understandable in context based on information from the speaker (i.e. because Japan does not allow gay marriage (yet, fingers crossed), a woman saying the word about about her spouse would give the meaning).

Not to derail the topic, but here’s another quick example. One time, I was at a dinner party and people were going around introducing themselves. One person said his job involved processing 人件費 (jinkenhi: personnel expenses, i.e. payroll) and everyone at the table was like, “Wow, so you’re a lawyer?” because they heard jinken as 人権, which means human rights. It caused quite a bit of confusion because the speaker couldn’t figure out why they were asking him about being a lawyer all of a sudden.


I was always tickled that they were homophones, but Japanese is a language full of homophones, which require context. And no one ever understood it unless I directly followed up with, “my spouse doesn’t have a job, he stays at home and takes care of the child.” Apparently a gender neutral word cannot stay gender neutral when it’s such a strongly gendered concept. It’s a good example of how our biase interferes with our hearing in a very literal sense.


Yeah, I refused to do that at the ad agency where I worked, especially when the madogiwa zoku behind me consisted of old salarymen sucking their teeth and reading manga and watching the women do the tea and dishes. I think I was tolerated because I was their international kamban musume (spokesboobs).

Lots of conflicting memories from that time. I had some great adventures and two awesome bosses, but the office culture was oppressive.

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Love the translation of musume to boobs. But that’s really how it is, isn’t it?


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