A Failed Mission in Liberation: Japanese Women’s Enfranchisement and American Occupation

Malcolm Ethan Johnson


In this work, I survey the discourse of Japanese feminists in the early twentieth century to understand the ways in which they were working to attain full enfranchisement. I employ this brief survey to argue that their work, while altered by the chaos of total war, was most severely undermined by the American Occupation and democratization effort. Ultimately, I advocate that, though American occupation effectively granted women legislative rights, this foreign allocation meant that widespread and meaningful social change on the practical level never occurred.


Japan; New Women; Feminism; Gender and Occupation


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