Patriarchy in East Asia
Sechiyama Kaku, University of Tokyo
The role and significance of patriarchy in East Asia varies greatly according to the interplay between deeply entrenched cultural norms, economic change, and government policy. The aim of this book, therefore, is to offer an historical perspective on these issues combined with an analysis of the transitions and outcomes that have occurred in the status of women over the course of modernization and industrialization in five East Asian societies – Japan, South Korea, North Korea, Taiwan, and China.
The narrative is interwoven with a discussion of contemporary issues such as the persistence of tradition and gender discrimination, how gender roles undermine the development of healthier marriage and family relationships (and better relations among the generations), the lack of full equality for women in employment, falling birth rates, and rising divorce rates.
Patriarchy in East Asia is the first study of its kind undertaken by a sociologist who is fluent in all of the local languages, thereby providing a rare level of access in terms of research of primary sources.