Women on the Verge; Japanese Women, Western Dreams

Kelsky, Karen

Published by Duke University Press, 2001
ISBN 10: 082232816X / ISBN 13: 9780822328162
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Softbound, 294 pp., Near Fine copy, erasable pencil-notes to the Introduction, light rubbing to the tips and edges of the covers. Bookseller Inventory #

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Synopsis: Over the past few decades, many young Japanese women have emerged as Japan’s most enthusiastic “internationalists,” investing in study or work abroad, or in romance with Western men as opportunities to circumvent what they consider their country’s oppressive corporate and family structures. Drawing on a rich supply of autobiographical narratives, as well as literary and cultural texts, Karen Kelsky situates this phenomenon against a backdrop of profound social change in Japan and within an intricate network of larger global forces.
In exploring the promises, limitations, and contradictions of these “occidental longings,” Women on the Verge exposes the racial and erotic politics of transnational mobility. Kelsky shows how female cosmopolitanism recontextualizes the well-known Western male romance with the Orient: Japanese women are now the agents, narrating their own desires for the “modern” West in ways that seem to defy Japanese nationalism as well as long-standing relations of power not only between men and women but between Japan and the West. While transnational movement is not available to all Japanese women, Kelsky shows that the desire for the foreign permeates many Japanese women’s lives. She also reveals how this feminine allegiance to the West—and particularly to white men—can impose its own unanticipated hegemonies of race, sexuality, and capital.
Combining ethnography and literary analysis, and bridging anthropology and cultural studies, Women on the Verge will also appeal to students and scholars of Japan studies, feminism, and global culture.

From the Publisher: “Kelsky insightfully treats desire as a complicated and contradictory complex, something inspired as much by pragmatic as erotic concerns. The narratives she offers are rich and impressive and her skills as a fieldworker as well as command of the ethnographic scene in Japan are striking. This is a compelling, engaging, and important work.”—Anne Allison, author of Nightwork: Sexuality, Pleasure, and Corporate Masculinity in a Tokyo Hostess Club

“Taking cover under her more innocuous theme of the recent internationalization of Japanese women’s lives and careers, Karen Kelsky bluntly asks one of the great taboo questions in Japanese studies: why do so many Japanese women, if given the chance, prefer white husbands over those of their own ethnicity? What are the historical and psychological reasons for a powerful attraction enshrined in popular culture since Madame Butterfly but until now never critically examined, certainly not from a modern feminist perspective? Kelsky’s provocative answers to these questions make her Women on the Verge the first study we have of Japan’s eroticization of the West, in a world already so full of books that would tell us how the West has eroticized Japan.”—John Whittier Treat, Yale University

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Women on the Verge; Japanese Women, Western ...
Publisher: Duke University Press
Publication Date: 2001
Binding: Paperback
Book Condition: Near Fine
Edition: First edition.

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Published by Duke University Press 2001-11-21 (2001)
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Book Description Duke University Press 2001-11-21, 2001. Paperback. Condition: Very Good. All books are pre-owned and will have been read by someone else before you. They may well show signs of minor wear and tear. Please note, cover images are illustrative only, and the actual book cover and edition can vary. Seller Inventory # 9780822328162-21

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Book Description Duke University Press. Paperback. Condition: Good. A copy that has been read, but remains in clean condition. All pages are intact, and the cover is intact. The spine may show signs of wear. Pages can include limited notes and highlighting, and the copy can include previous owner inscriptions. An ex-library book and may have standard library stamps and/or stickers. At ThriftBooks, our motto is: Read More, Spend Less. Seller Inventory # G082232816XI3N10

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Book Description Duke University Press. Paperback. Condition: Very Good. A copy that has been read, but remains in excellent condition. Pages are intact and are not marred by notes or highlighting, but may contain a neat previous owner name. The spine remains undamaged. At ThriftBooks, our motto is: Read More, Spend Less. Seller Inventory # G082232816XI4N00

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Book Description Duke University Press Books. Paperback. Condition: GOOD. Spine creases, wear to binding and pages from reading. May contain limited notes, underlining or highlighting that does affect the text. Possible ex library copy, that’ll have the markings and stickers associated from the library. Accessories such as CD, codes, toys, may not be included. Seller Inventory # 2933689296

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