The purpose of this paper is to explore both the problems and possibilities of men's studies from the perspective of gender equality. The recent discussions in men's studies are apt to focus on the harshness of men's burden and their multiple responsibilities, which this paper names “Otoko ha Trurai-yo Gata Danseigaku (men's studies based on the discourse of the burden of men's multiple responsibilities).” Indeed this approach to men's studies recently has played a vital role in social education and employee education and helps middle-aged men have a new perspective into gender issues. However, there are also many criticisms that this approach hinders the realization of gender equality. This paper surveys the points of discussion using the theory of positionality and presents the limitations of “Otoko ha Trurai-yo Gata Danseigaku.” This paper analyses that the male sense of burden is the result of globalism and that it is likely to cause conservative attitudes and minority exclusion. It is necessary to propose an alternative direction of men's studies for gender equality and men's liberation
Control-oriented education is characterized as authoritarianism and groupism, which excludes individuality and makes both teachers and students feel suffocated. However, those in power cling to their vested interests, making scapegoats and claiming that men are sufferers, thereby maintaining the status quo. However, if teachers intend to support students under challenging conditions, having actual dialogues concerning the fact that men suffer as well is necessary for all concerned. In this essay, the author discusses the necessity of escaping from masculinity using case studies on high schools that have shifted from control-oriented education and presents concrete remedies to solve such problem.
Some websites for men advise men in their 50s to approach women in their 20s to 30s. These texts encourage older men, claiming that they are desirable targets for young women's romantic dates. This type of message, also seen in men's magazines, is now widespread, while in reality, women see it as one of the contributors to the pervasiveness of sexual harassment.
Those male writings describe “women's characteristics” solely from their notably unique perspective and judgments. As its example, an author of Theory on Love, a male university professor, writes that men should know women's menstrual cycles because of their preference for men changes before and after their period. He also gives very questionable advice that men should not care if menstruating women reject them because they are too concerned with their blood scent or sanitary items. It is not so strange that this type of message is embraced by those men who learned about women only from adult magazines or porno, having no interaction with real women during their adolescence.
Thus some men talk and write about women's bodies more confidently than women do, and many more men blindly absorb these opinions, not taking into account any women's own perspective. How stubborn men are in their refusal to know the reality!
This article proposes that masculinity scholars direct more considerable attention to when and how diverse notions of what men are like (i.e., masculinities) are utilized to stabilize and reproduce unequal gender relations. In doing so, I argue that the conceptual framework of hegemonic masculinity helps us to analyze how multiple masculinities are discursively organized and mobilized to cultivate and reinforce people's tolerant attitudes toward structural male supremacy. Although hegemonic masculinity has been typically understood/misunderstood as the most powerful, celebrated form of masculinity in a societal setting, which Messerschmidt (2016) termed as dominant masculinity, what characterizes hegemonic masculinity is its function for unequal gender relations; that is, a particular notion of what men are like can be described as hegemonic masculinity when it helps to legitimize men's privilege. Referring to the prevailing view of men as inhibited from engaging in family caregiving by the long-hour work culture in Japan, I discuss how such a view can function as hegemonic masculinity that makes people hesitant to openly criticizing men's little involvement with personal care work. This article also discusses how the framework of hegemonic masculinity helps masculinity scholars to reflect on their work such that they will not become inadvertently implicated in legitimizing unequal gender relations.
The purpose of this paper is to describe images of Chinese women with Japanese spouses in Japanese magazine articles during the 1990s and 2000s.
In magazine articles from the 1990s, when international marriages between Chinese women and Japanese men were increasing, Chinese women were portrayed as “brides of the farmhouse” who could be purchased like products by Japanese men with economic power. The increase of international marriages between Chinese women and Japanese men has the background of a “shortage of brides” in rural Japan. They were regarded as alternatives to Japanese women who could support the patriarchal family system and fulfill the gender roles of “wife” and “mother.” However, in the 2000s, as Japan’s immigration control policies became stricter, Chinese women, who were supposed to become spouses of Japanese men, deviated from the gender norms and came to be seen as criminals that were a huge threat to “Japanese people” and “Japanese society,” as reported in the magazine articles.
In this way, the images of Chinese women with Japanese spouses in magazine articles have primally changed from “good wives” who were subordinate to Japanese men sexually and performed their gender roles well, into that of criminals. This shift can be linked to the context where the Japanese government strengthened its control over illegal employment, “illegal residents,” and fake marriage cases involving foreigners in Japan.