Non-Fiction Books:

Life in a Japanese Women's College

Learning to be Ladylike

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Life in a Japanese Women's College by Brian J McVeigh

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One third of the Japanese female workforce are 'office ladies' and their training takes place at the many women's colleges in Japan. Brian J McVeigh draws on his teaching experiences at one such institution - Takasu International College - to examine the cultural processes at work in the education of the women who attend. This ethnographically-informed study explores the educational philosophy of the college which aims to produce 'ladylike' women. The processes utilized in this aim include: careful management of the body; being Japanese; 'internationalism'; well-orchestrated school functions and events; and 'theatricalized' education. Through detailed analysis of the college's philosophy, the author illustrates how the students are prepared for their future roles in family life. Life in a Japanese Women's College sheds light on wider issues, demonstrating how women's junior college form part of a complex interralated socioeconomic order. The study shows that the social construction of gender utilized in Takasu International College can be seen as a reflection of those processes operating in Japanese society as a whole.

Author Biography

Brian J McVeigh is Associate Professor, Toyo Gakuen University, Tokyo
Release date NZ
December 5th, 1996
Country of Publication
United Kingdom
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