Geisha Essay

explanatory Essay
636 words
636 words

A Geisha is a traditional Japanese entertainer. They are skilled in many things, some being playing classical music, dancing, and pottery. Geisha have played a big part in Japan's history because they have been around for so long and have entertained many of the Japanese Shoguns and Emperors. Recently the numbers of Geisha have decreased greatly and the art is slowly growing extinct. It is important to keep this tradition alive to teach future generations about the Japanese arts.
What is a geisha? Translated into English the word Geisha literally means "arts person" or the "one trained in arts" which is exactly what Geishas are. When some people think about Geishas they assume they are prostitutes when in reality, they are performers. Geishas are taught by their elders on entertainment ways such as: ways of dancing, playing an instrument, and how to make pottery. In Japan some prostitutes have called themselves Geishas in order to get themselves more "customers." One way that is easy to distinguish which one is which is by looking at their obi over their kimono, Geishas tie theirs in the back and Japanese prostitutes tie it in the front. Often the prostitutes were called "Geisha girls" or "Panpan girls." Becoming a Geisha isn’t as easy as it sounds. You have to go through extensive training to get everything to look beautiful and perfect. Usually to become a geisha, a girl must find and be accepted into an okiya, and the mother of the house (okasan) must agree to pay for her training. Typically it takes about 6 years at a kaburenjo to become a Geisha. The six years are spent studying the arts of entertainment, such as: music, dance, tea ceremony, language, and hosting. During the years the Geisha will live in the okiya she has bee...

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...inished her studies. As of February 2011, Fiona is no longer a Geisha. Although reporters are not one hundred percent certain, an inside source said she failed to follow customs and spent too much time on self-promotion. According to a representative of the Asakusa Geisha Associaion they thought Fiona wanted to become a Geisha only "as a part of her study" and "did not want to become an independent Geisha to begin with" (A. Novick, Wall Street Journal)
When a geisha first starts off she is called a maiko, or an apprentice geisha. This is when she has an onesan or "older sister" to teach her as her mentor. There is also a ceremony where the older and younger "sister" both take three sips of sake from three cups, which bind them together as mentor and apprentice. After the ceremony the younger geisha will usually pick a name that is similar to the one of her sisters.

In this essay, the author

  • Explains that geisha are a traditional japanese entertainer who play classical music, dance, and pottery. they have entertained many japanese shoguns and emperors.
  • Explains that a geisha is an "arts person" or the "one trained in arts" in english.
  • Explains that a geisha picks one of the special kaburenjo's theaters, which are rarely used for performing for outsiders.
  • Explains that fiona graham was the first foreigner to become a full-fledged geisha.
  • Explains that when a geisha first starts off, she is called maiko, or an apprentice. she has an onesan or "older sister" to teach her as her mentor.
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