Womansword: What Japanese Words Say about Women (Anniversary)


Product Details

$19.95  $18.35
Stone Bridge Press
Publish Date
5.5 X 0.5 X 8.4 inches | 0.5 pounds
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About the Author

Author Kittredge Cherry studied in Japan on a Rotary International Journalism scholarship at Kobe College and International Christian University in Tokyo. She has written about Japan for such publications as Newsweek and the Wall Street Journal. Her popular "Cool Words" column was a regular feature at the Asahi Weekly from 2006-09. A native of Iowa, Cherry has degrees in journalism and art history from the University of Iowa, and a master of divinity degree from Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, CA. Kitt's specialties include women's issues, language, culture, and communication.The New York Times Book Review praised her very graceful, erudite writing style and her poetry has won several awards. Her books have been translated into Chinese, German, Japanese, and Polish.


"Cherry's short, meticulously researched pieces are filled with lively descriptions and illuminating historical tales about words relating to women, illustrating how womanhood, femininity and the role of women are perceived in Japanese society. Womansword remains a rich treasure trove of words and reflections on aspects of Japanese womanhood that you won't find anywhere else."--The Japan Times

"Wonderfully written and charming throughout... Womansword illuminates Japanese cultural norms and values through an examination of a great number of well-known and not-so-well-known expressions. It is a lot of fun for language learners and very insightful into the culture."--Kyoto Journal

"Womansword is as intriguing and funny as it is eye-opening and surprising."--The San Francisco Book Review

"A delightfully insightful read.... It remains one of, if not the best, English language resources for learning about the women of Japan through the language they use."--Tofugu

"Japanese is, or at least seems to be, an order of magnitude more gender-layered than English and Womansword is an attempt to pick these meanings apart; it does so with clarity and good humour."--Asian Review of Books

"A fascinating read and a striking reminder of how language can reflect the general mindset and culture of society."--JQ Magazine

"After three decades, Womansword still cuts to the core of gender dynamics in Japanese society. With a new Introduction giving us updates on various topics and a plethora of recent words, this book remains one of the most accessible and intriguing guides to the status of women in Japanese society."--Ayako Kano, University of Pennsylvania, author of Japanese Feminist Debates: A Century of Contention on Sex, Love, and Labor (University of Hawai'i Press, 2016)

"Kitt Cherry has a long, storied career balancing and brokering the values of tradition with the excitement of the modern. Womansword charts, through evolving language, changes that have radically transformed Japanese women - and Japan -- for decades. From tom-boy fashion ("Prince Lolita") to national discussions of a possible female emperor, Cherry captures the vibrancy of the new Japan. This book is a vital read for feminists, linguists, and everyone interested in how culture changes."--Michael Bronski, Professor of Women and Gender Studies, Harvard University

"Informative, deep, and even a bit troubling... Wowmansword is a powerful, powerful book."--Andrew Joseph, It's A Wonderful Rife