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Nightwork: Sexuality, Pleasure, and Corporate Masculinity in a Tokyo Hostess Club

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Nightwork: Sexuality, Pleasure, and Corporate Masculinity in a Tokyo Hostess Club Cover

ISBN13: 9780226014876
ISBN10: 0226014878
Condition: Standard
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

In Nightwork, Anne Allison opens a window onto Japanese corporate culture and gender identities. Allison performed the ritualized tasks of a hostess in one of Tokyo's many "hostess clubs": pouring drinks, lighting cigarettes, and making flattering or titillating conversation with the businessmen who came there on company expense accounts. Her book critically examines how such establishments create bonds among white-collar men and forge a masculine identity that suits the needs of their corporations.

Allison describes in detail a typical company outing to such a club--what the men do, how they interact with the hostesses, the role the hostess is expected to play, and the extent to which all of this involves "play" rather than "work." Unlike previous books on Japanese nightlife, Allison's ethnography of one specific hostess club (here referred to as Bijo) views the general phenomenon from the eyes of a woman, hostess, and feminist anthropologist.

Observing that clubs like Bijo further a kind of masculinity dependent on the gestures and labors of women, Allison seeks to uncover connections between such behavior and other social, economic, sexual, and gendered relations. She argues that Japanese corporate nightlife enables and institutionalizes a particular form of ritualized male dominance: in paying for this entertainment, Japanese corporations not only give their male workers a self-image as phallic man, but also develop relationships to work that are unconditional and unbreakable. This is a book that will appeal to anyone interested in gender roles or in contemporary Japanese society.

Synopsis:

In Nightwork, Anne Allison opens a window onto Japanese corporate culture and gender identities. Allison performed the ritualized tasks of a hostess in one of Tokyo's many "hostess clubs": pouring drinks, lighting cigarettes, and making flattering or titillating conversation with the businessmen who came there on company expense accounts. Her book critically examines how such establishments create bonds among white-collar men and forge a masculine identity that suits the needs of their corporations.

Allison describes in detail a typical company outing to such a club—what the men do, how they interact with the hostesses, the role the hostess is expected to play, and the extent to which all of this involves "play" rather than "work." Unlike previous books on Japanese nightlife, Allison's ethnography of one specific hostess club (here referred to as Bijo) views the general phenomenon from the eyes of a woman, hostess, and feminist anthropologist.

Observing that clubs like Bijo further a kind of masculinity dependent on the gestures and labors of women, Allison seeks to uncover connections between such behavior and other social, economic, sexual, and gendered relations. She argues that Japanese corporate nightlife enables and institutionalizes a particular form of ritualized male dominance: in paying for this entertainment, Japanese corporations not only give their male workers a self-image as phallic man, but also develop relationships to work that are unconditional and unbreakable. This is a book that will appeal to anyone interested in gender roles or in contemporary Japanese society.

Description:

Includes bibliographical references (p. 205-209) and index.

About the Author

Anne Allison is the Robert O. Keohane Professor of Cultural Anthropology and Professor of Women's Studies at Duke University.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments

Prelude

Introduction

Pt. 1: Ethnography of a Hostess Club

Ch. 1: A Type of Place

Ch. 2: A Type of Routine

Ch. 3: A Type of Woman

Pt. 2: Mapping the Nightlife within Cultural Categories

Introduction

Ch. 4: Social Place and Identity

Ch. 5: The Meaning and Place of Work: The Sarariiman

Ch. 6: Family and Home

Ch. 7: Structure of Japanese Play

Ch. 8: Male Play with Money, Women, and Sex

Pt. 3: Male Rituals and Masculinity

Introduction

Ch. 9: Male Bonding

Ch. 10: The Mizu Shobai Woman: Constructing Dirtiness and Sex

Ch. 11: Impotence as a Sign and Symbol of the Sarariiman

References

Index

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

644778, November 8, 2007 (view all comments by 644778)
I was hoping that it would be a little more anecdotal, but strictly as a research paper it is very well researched and written. However, I would not recommend it for leisure reading unless you have an interest in the topic itself. It's an interesting look into an aspect of Japanese culture I never knew before as an American, so for my part I'm glad I read it.
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Product Details

ISBN:
9780226014876
Author:
Allison, Anne
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
Location:
Chicago :
Subject:
Friendship
Subject:
Entertaining
Subject:
Customs & Traditions
Subject:
Corporate culture
Subject:
Asia - Japan
Subject:
Tokyo (Japan)
Subject:
Tokyo
Subject:
Male friendship
Subject:
Tokyo (Japan) Social life and customs.
Subject:
Cocktail servers -- Japan -- Tokyo.
Subject:
Bars
Subject:
Cocktail servers
Subject:
Bars (Drinking establishments) - Japan -
Subject:
Entertaining -- Japan -- Tokyo.
Subject:
Sociology - General
Copyright:
Edition Description:
1
Series Volume:
76
Publication Date:
19940531
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
Professional and scholarly
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Yes
Pages:
228
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in

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Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Anthropology » Asia
History and Social Science » Feminist Studies » Sex Industry
History and Social Science » Gender Studies » Sex Industry
History and Social Science » Gender Studies » Womens Studies
History and Social Science » Sociology » General

Nightwork: Sexuality, Pleasure, and Corporate Masculinity in a Tokyo Hostess Club Used Trade Paper
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$7.50 In Stock
Product details 228 pages University of Chicago Press - English 9780226014876 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by ,
In Nightwork, Anne Allison opens a window onto Japanese corporate culture and gender identities. Allison performed the ritualized tasks of a hostess in one of Tokyo's many "hostess clubs": pouring drinks, lighting cigarettes, and making flattering or titillating conversation with the businessmen who came there on company expense accounts. Her book critically examines how such establishments create bonds among white-collar men and forge a masculine identity that suits the needs of their corporations.

Allison describes in detail a typical company outing to such a club—what the men do, how they interact with the hostesses, the role the hostess is expected to play, and the extent to which all of this involves "play" rather than "work." Unlike previous books on Japanese nightlife, Allison's ethnography of one specific hostess club (here referred to as Bijo) views the general phenomenon from the eyes of a woman, hostess, and feminist anthropologist.

Observing that clubs like Bijo further a kind of masculinity dependent on the gestures and labors of women, Allison seeks to uncover connections between such behavior and other social, economic, sexual, and gendered relations. She argues that Japanese corporate nightlife enables and institutionalizes a particular form of ritualized male dominance: in paying for this entertainment, Japanese corporations not only give their male workers a self-image as phallic man, but also develop relationships to work that are unconditional and unbreakable. This is a book that will appeal to anyone interested in gender roles or in contemporary Japanese society.

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