Note from Editor: Students are reading Anne Allison’s book Precarious Japan, and sharing their thoughts on how their own future plans are impacted by the instability and insecurity that Allison describes.
Anonymous student post
My goal in the future is to work for the Ministry of Defense in Japan. I had an opportunity to listen to a lecture by a staff member of the Ministry of Defense at Ritsumeikan University. I became interested in working for Japan and thinking about how improve the position of Japan in international society through this lecture. The staff at the Ministry of Defense requires a high knowledge of security. Therefore, hard work and various experiences are necessary when I am a Ritsumeikan University student. Although I have a clear future goal in working, working is not everything in life. Through Anne Allison’s Precarious Japan, I rethink the concept of ibasho.
Where is my ibasho? Ibasho is a comfortable place to me. Although it is invisible, a good life needs it. My present ibasho is family, Ritusmeikan University, the American football team, and so on. I think having more than one ibasho is necessary, one is family and the others are public, for example school and company. My anxiety in the future is that I can get ibasho in both family and work.
Unfortunately, Japan is still not a women-friendly society. It is true that the number of working women is increasing and the condition for working women is improving. However, Japanese society still has a trend in which woman should have the burden of child rearing and housework. A lot of working women quit their jobs because of giving birth and child rearing. Some companies wish pregnant women to quit their job. It is difficult for women to get both ibasho in family and work.
I would like to be able to cope with my work and my family like my mother does. However, my mother’s work is women-friendly. She took childcare until I was 2 years old and got summer and winter vacations. I would like to choose work that I want to do. When I am employed, I hope Japan is a more women-friendly society.