Female Emperors In Ancient Japan Research Paper

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The Existnece of Female Emperors in Ancient Japan and their Political Significance From most of the historical references about ancient Japan, people tend to draw the impression that males were dominant rulers. However, women were actually very important figures in pre-historic time, as they fulfilled their role as independent leaders, especially in times of succession crises. This is why the study of female sovereignty is vital to understand the formation of the Japanese state, based on gender complimentary rulers. The political significance of the existence of these female emperors in ancient Japan is that they provided a place of legitimacy for women leaders, and they played a substantial part in identifying and creating the Japanese society. Joan Scott, an American historian in gender history and intellectual history, argues that gender is the key category to analyze history, and Joan Piggott and Akiko Yoshie point out the incontrovertible fact that women did rule in ancient Japan. Scott argues that it is crucial to study how culture constructed femininity and masculinity. She applied theory to the study of the relationship of gender roles in different societies, and also linked this history approach to poststructuralism. The examination of the category women must be carefully analyzed in terms of the process of how gender created the difference in male and female identities. Therefore, it is vital to study historical female sovereignty, in order to understand the political significance, in this case, of female emperors in ancient Japan. In Yoshie's work, “Gender in Early Classical Japan: Marriage, Leadership, and Political Status in Village and Palace (2005),” she takes the example of Toji, women known to have played a m... ... middle of paper ... ...emperors in ancient Japan is that they provided a place of legitimacy for women leaders, and they played a substantial part in identifying and creating the Japanese society. Women were to have been important in pre-historic time, but the loss of their power could be blamed on how Japan refashioned its political system to follow the Chinese ideology and way statecraft, and the lack of references on female sovereignty have been distorted or hidden. In regard to the Piggott provides written and archaeological evidence to make her argument that women ruled frequently in pre-modern Japan, and the study of female sovereignty is vital to understand the Japanese state formation based on gender complimentary rulers. As Scott points out, it is vital to study historical female sovereignty, in order to understand the political significance of female emperors in ancient Japan.

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