Barred from wearing glasses, Japan’s working women take to Twitter

I can honestly say, nonetheless, that what I’ve seen in my very own expertise working in Japan has been promising. Members of the generation of girls who obtained on the career track after the country applied its equal opportunity employment regulation in 1986 and who’ve continued to stay it out within the corporate trenches, are now in their 50s and taking on senior roles. I’ve had many meetings with Japanese firms during which most or all of the key decision-makers were women.


Marriage shall be based only on the mutual consent of each sexes and it shall be maintained through mutual cooperation with the equal rights of husband and wife as a foundation. With regard to selection of partner, property rights, inheritance, selection of domicile, divorce and other issues pertaining to marriage and the family, laws shall be enacted from the standpoint of individual dignity and the important equality of the sexes. On an evening out with the women at a Tokyo bar, an acquaintance jokingly recalled an anecdote in which grocery store workers addressed her as okusan. The word, she mentioned as she impatiently gulped her beer, is wrong — she’s single (and loves it), is concentrated on her career and never intends on constructing a family.

But apparently, the simple act of buying carrots mechanically positioned her in the class of a married woman. While we brushed off the dialog, quick to give attention to more necessary things (wine), the topic kept coming round — making us ponder the etymology behind the many words for “woman” in Japan. Many Japanese women are preventing for the best to put on eyeglasses to work, a brand new front within the rising motion that calls for an finish to the prescriptive beauty requirements confronted by feminine workers. The difficulty of combining a career and child-rearing, particularly with a lack of day care options obtainable, causes many Japanese women to surrender attempting to do both. In addition, tax rules that favor stay-at-home spouses make persevering with to work after marriage financially much less interesting.

Generally, I would advocate to not worry about it, and simply be yourself and conduct enterprise as traditional. Therefore, many workplaces in Japan have overwhelmingly male management, creating an setting that can be inhospitable to women. This pushes many women toward opting out when the logistical elements turn out to be overwhelming.

The chorus of discontent against the glasses ban echoes a similar phenomenon in South Korea last 12 months, when a female information anchor broke ranks and determined to wear glasses instead of putting on contact lenses for her early morning present. The sight of a girl carrying glasses reading the information not only shocked viewers, but additionally prompted a local airline to evaluate its personal policies and permit female cabin crew to wear glasses.

Surveys by job recruiter En Japan discovered that 72 p.c of women have experienced some form of harassment at work, and fifty four p.c feel that they are at an obstacle in their companies as a result of they are female. Earlier this yr, Japanese women started voicing their discontent with arcane office restrictions on their seems via the #KuToo motion, which drew attention to the requirement that many corporations nonetheless have that girls wear excessive heels to work. The term #KuToo is a triple pun, playing on the Japanese words kutsu (footwear), kutsuu (ache), and the #MeToo motion. The explosion of interest in discriminatory treatment against women at the office additionally comes amid a growing rejection of sexist norms in Japanese society because the #MeToo movement started gaining ground since 2018. But the opinions on this video are just only interviewees alone and don’t essentially mirror the views of other Japanese women.

The program followed a report printed late final month by Business Insider Japan (link in Japanese) on the same problem. From mandatory high heels to a ban on glasses, Japanese women have been busy pushing again against restrictive and anachronistic costume codes within the workplace in 2019.

Your Guide To The Best Things To Do In Tokyo!

However, socially they lack alternatives in the workforce because of the long work hours and dominance within the workplace by men. The prohibition on glasses by some firms is the latest flash level for professional women in Japan. In March, women railed in opposition to the frequent requirement that ladies put on make-up at work. Earlier this yr, actor and writer Yumi Ishikawa sparked the #KuToo motion to criticize rules that require women to put on high heels to work.

japanese women

Tips And Tricks For Staying Active In Tokyo Through Pregnancy And Beyond

A ruling issued on December 16, 2015, the Supreme Court of Japan ruled that in mild of the brand new 100 days before women’s remarriage regulation, in order that there isn’t any confusion over the paternity of a kid born to a woman who remarried, any child born after 200 days of remarriage is the legal baby of the present husband. Last month I wrote about how the Japanese are likely to react negatively to aggressive debate when discussing a difficulty, it doesn’t matter what your gender is. Not surprisingly, some Japanese discover it notably grating when the confrontational strategy is coming from a girl, because of traditional cultural expectations of ladies in Japan.

“If the principles prohibit solely women to wear glasses, this is a discrimination against women,” Kanae Doi, the Japan director at Human Rights Watch, informed the Thomson Reuters Foundation on Friday. In the newest protest against inflexible rules over women’s appearance, the hashtag “glasses are forbidden” was trending on Twitter in response to a Japanese television present that uncovered businesses that were imposing the bans on female employees. Japanese women on social media are demanding the right to wear glasses to work, after reports that employers were imposing bans. Akiba, Fumiko (March 1998).

Women in Japan are being told to not put on glasses at work to keep away from trying ‘chilly’ and ‘unfeminine’

The program listed numerous causes that employers gave for not wanting women to wear glasses whereas at work. Domestic airways mentioned it was for safety reasons, firms in the magnificence trade stated it was difficult to see the employee’s make-up properly behind glasses, whereas major retail chains said feminine store assistants give off a “cold impression” if they put on glasses. Traditional Japanese restaurants stated that glasses simply don’t go properly with traditional Japanese costume. The hashtag “glasses are forbidden” (#メガネ禁止) has been trending on social media in Japan this week following the airing of a program on the Nippon TV network exploring how firms in numerous sectors don’t enable feminine workers to put on glasses on the job.

Keep in mind that there are additionally benefits to being a woman when working with Japanese colleagues. The Japanese will are likely to presume that any woman in a senior place must be really nice at their job, an assumption that may work to your advantage. Typical feminine communication patterns in Western cultures — less confrontational and more collaborative — are usually naturally closer to these of the Japanese. You could even find yourself put within the highlight as a job mannequin for Japanese women within the firm. Women were given the best to vote in 1946.

Long hours at the office and the heavy responsibilities that come with administration posts are additionally a deterrent. It’s not a shocking question, given the numerous stories they might have heard concerning the challenges faced by Japanese women in the workforce, and sexism is undeniably a problem here. However, it’s essential to also acknowledge that the days of girls serving tea have been largely relegated to the previous. And as a female govt who has efficiently labored with Japanese colleagues for her complete profession, I’d hate for different women to intentionally keep away from working in or with Japanese companies based on outdated stories they’ve heard.

In 2015, Article 733 of Japan’s Civil Code that states that ladies cannot remarry 6 months after divorce was decreased to 100 days. The 6 month ban on remarriage for ladies was beforehand aiming to “avoid uncertainty relating to the identity of the legally presumed father of any child born in that time period”. Under article 772, presumes that after a divorce, a toddler born 300 days after divorce is the legal youngster of the previous husband.