FEMINISM

   Feminism (josei kaihoron) as a movement began in Japan in the early 20th century. During the Meiji period, women authors, such as the writer Higuchi Ichiyo and the poet Yosano Akiko, met with great critical acclaim. In the 1920s, an indigenous Japanese feminist movement, led by Hiratsuka Raicho, resulted in women’s suffrage and widened opportunities for professional advancement. Postwar writers, such as Minakami Tsutomu, and Japanese feminist writers, such as Ariyoshi Sawako and Hayashi Fumiko, wrote forcefully of the trials Japanese women face in society. Japanese feminism received a boost from the West’s women’s liberation movement of the late 20th century, and the ideal of self-determination for women continues through such contemporary Japanese women writers as Yamada Eimi and Hayashi Mariko.

Historical dictionary of modern Japanese literature and theater. . 2009.

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