This presenter explains why he is proud to be his mother's son.

Key words: teen motherhood, teen marriage, marital infidelity, gambling, domestic violence, child abuse, appreciation

This student takes a critical look at the politics of housework. What, she asks, is the difference between "helping with" and "sharing" housework?

Key words: housework, 'ryosai kembo' ('good wife and wise mother'), fairness
Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

"People and Women: The Underside of Masculine Gender Normativity"
A three-part 20-minute self-operating PowerPoint show designed to accompany "Re-De-Signing People."

Key words: pseudo-genericity, semantic space, markedness, discourse, female erasure, visibility strategy

"Re-De-Signing People"
By looking critically at everyday signs used in public facilities, this article, co-written by Tamarah Cohen and Kerstan B. Cohen, meets Kyoto Journal's call to address "changes, challenges and possibilities" of gender identity, while exploring "relations between gender, culture and power." The authors argue that "people signs" are pseudo-generic and offer rich possibilities for subversive "re-de-signing."

Published by Kyoto Journal, #64 Special Issue, September 2006; currently available in-full on-line at

The presenter takes a fresh New (critical) look at Japanese children's entertainment.

Key words: gender stereotypes, over-/under-representation, "girls' world" (e.g., Sailor Moon), "boys' world" (e.g., Dragon Ball, Doraemon), office lady, Ani Defranco listening exercise ("Superhero")

What follows are two short presentations delivered to lower-level Kansai Gaidai University language learners by an upper-level counterpart.

The first, "Masculinity and the Occupation of Symbolic Space", centers on the man-girl configuration that pervades Japanese media.

Key words: Tough Guise, Killing Us Softly, symbolic space, infantilization of women, sexualization of girls, backlash, masculinity, Morning Girls

The second, "Makeinu, Onibaba, Oniyome... Oniotto?" focuses on the ever-growing 'older woman' semantic set of Japanese.

Key words: Sakai Junko, 'makeinu' [loser dog], Misago Chizuru, 'onibaba' [demon hag], 'oniyome' [demon (i.e., nonsubmissive) wife], 'oniotto', linguistic pressure, feminist resistance, word coinage

The presenters asks two overlapping language-oriented questions:
1) Are males the paradigm of humanity in Japanese [as they are in English]?
2) Are females describes as "minus males" in Japanese [as they are in English]?

Key words: Dale Spender (Man Made Language), Geoffrey Leech, animate nouns, Esperanto, markedness, 'hito' (person)

The presenter argues that the Japanese government is ultimately responsible for the ryosaikenbo phenomenon, past and present.

Key words: ryosaikenbo, outside-inside work, tradition, M-Curve, government, revival, wages

About the presenter's labor activist grandmother.

Key words: activism, May Day, labor laws, wages, mobilization

A moving sketch of what "shopping" entailed for women in Japan 70 years ago.

Key words: shopping, 'furoshiki', Takeishi Village, housework, men, sacrifice, love, normal

About why the presenter bears her mother's family name (and why, sadly, this begs explanation).

Key words: family name, heir ('souzokunin'), head family ('honke'), eldest daughter, blind dating, arranged marriage ('omiai')

About loving people but failing to show it, and then it's too late.

Key words: earnest, funeral ('sougi'/'soushiki'), expressing love/respect/appreciation

This presentation focuses on the mandatory "wait period" imposed by law on Japanese women wanting to remarry.

Key words: marriage-divorce-remarriage, pregnancy, paternity, Civil Code Articles 733 and 772

The presenter draws a deeply respectful portrait of her one-time "yankii" mother, then compares it with her own emerging adult self.

Key words: 'putaro' (unemployed young adult), 'yankii' (social renegade), respect

"Everyone," begins the presenter, "knows that atomic bombs were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki," but what do people know about the Akashi Air-Raids?

Key words: Akashi, Kawasaki Aircraft Akashi Factory, dugouts, 'gakutodouin' (student factory workers), "Student Workers: Oka 7001 Factory"

About the disappearance of the presenter's grandfather's historically significant hometown.

Key words: Besshiyama Village, Bessiyama Coppermine, Nihama City, local history, historical memory
"Weaponstown" presents viewers with a unique people's history of hitherto unknown Hirakata, located in in the Osaka prefecture of Japan. (As a teaching tool, the 45-minute video-documentary is designed to accompany Peasants, Rebels, Women, and Outcastes: The Underside of Modern Japan -- 2nd and to model the use of personal narrative as a means to unpacking the unmarked context-specific cultural narratives of gender, sexuality, ethnicity, class and national identity.)

Key words: Hirakata, Imperial Japan, munitions factory, Kinyakayakuko, explosion, Komatsu, Kansai Gaidai University.

Student Handout:

[Available Upon Request]
This presenter wants to know what Japanese school uniforms say about the girls and boys who wear -- and in many cases "transform" -- them.

Key words: school uniforms, militarism, transformation, 'enjokousai' (commercialized sexual exploitation by adult males of under-aged females), self-expression.

Teacher Tamarah accompanies one of her Korean-Japanese students to a Korean Coming-of-Age-Day ceremony in Osaka, Japan.

Key Words: Japanese, Coming-of-Age, Zainichi Korean, suffrage.

Teacher Tamarah takes a critical look at Coming-of-Age Day in Japan.

Key words: adulthood, gendered behavior, smoking, juice/alcohol consumption, parenting, traditional/business attire, hair extensions, time-money investment, disparity.

In realizing that women's voices are largely absent from the public domain except in automated, service-oriented form (e.g., ATM, car navigation, microwave machines), this presenter looks for explanations and implications.

Key words: embodied-disembodied voices, invisible-disempowered women, visible-empowered men.

About the presenter's grandmother's two mothers.

Key words: 'uminooya' (biological mother), 'sodatenooya' (stepmother), tuberculosis, diabetes, child abuse, respect.

The presenter reports on her interview with two ethnic Korean residents of Utoro, a small impoverished village in Japan's Kyoto Prefecture.

Key words: military airport, 'nagaya' (row houses), 'Shinchugun' (American Occupation Forces), Nissan, Nishinihonsyokusan, water pipes, 'kyoseitekkyo' (forced evacuation), South Korean Government.

About a alcohol-induced car accident that changed the life of the presenter and her family forever.

Key words: drunk driving, convenience, danger.

About a so-called "hafu" student (i.e., the presenter herself) and her Australian mother.

Key words: 'gaijin' (outsider), 'gaikokujin' (foreigner), intermarriage, 'ainoko' (mixed- or "half-" blood), soto/uchi "Other," discrimination, 'danka' (support of a temple), haiku.

This presenter takes a fresh look at the "sorrowful lives" of the "girl workers" who fueled the so-called "miraculous" modernization of Japan.

Key words: 'jyoko aishi' (girl workers: a sorrowful story), Nomugi Toge (Nomugi Pass), silk filature workers, modernization.

This presenters wants to know where all the girls are in "children's entertainment."

Key words: 'ko itten' (a touch of scarlet), 'koku itten' (male equivalent of 'ko itten'), Kittredge Cherry, Super Sentai Series, Go Ranger, Bio Man, Geki Ranger, Dolores Martinez, media representation.

Who is served by the rules that structure -- or rather, constrain -- our lives? This is the question the presenter sets out to answer.

Key words: rules, military/school uniforms, social control.

The presenter focuses on what it means to grow old in a woman's body.

Key words: 'rojin' (older person), 'jiji' (old man), 'baba' (old woman), semantic equals (parallels/counterparts), nursing murder, life expectancy, negative space, visibility.

This presentation focuses on the "amazing experiences" of the presenter's Taisho-Meiji era grandparents.

Key words: WWII, wealthy family, 'atotori' (family heir), 'jyochu' (housemaid), housework, 'haikyusei' (food rations), rice, 'butsubutsu-koukan' (bartering), self-sacrifice.

This three-part video is comprised of an end-of-semester presentation about the extraordinary suffering -- and "tiny happiness" -- of the presenter's grandmother, a follow-up mini-presentation that focuses on 'Goze' (the source of the presenter's grandmother's "tiny happiness"), and finally, a text-based portrait of Kobayashi Haru, the last Goze of Japan.

Key words: poverty, government oppression, Goze (blind itinerant female singers-musicians), Kobayashi Haru: Living National Treasure, Honma Shoko, Momoku-no-Tabibito.