Family communication and gender equality

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.

by Hitoshi Haruki

In this class, I’m reading Precarious Japan by Anne Allison, and I was surprised at the many problems in Japan. In this book, it was established that there will be many problems in Japan in the future such as hikikomori, the rise of people who do a part-time job and do not work as a full-time employee, and dying alone. I would like to consider Japan’s future in this post.

First of all, Allison says that dying alone is one of the most severe problems in Japan. I think there are a lot of causes of dying alone. Especially when people have weak connections. Due to the spread of the Internet, people have imaginary friends. They make friends on the Internet. They always stay home and use the Internet. They cannot do face-to-face communication. They cannot even communicate with their family and do not have strong connection which lead to dying alone. The solution of this problem is that people have more opportunities to do face-to-face communication. To prevent dying alone, it is important to communicate with one’s own family. For example, people should always have a meal with their family and talk about their daily lives. If I get married, I will keep in mind the importance of face-to-face communication. I want to live in a loving home.

Allison also mentions there is the problem of women’s status. In Japan people thought men were to work for a company while women were to do housework in the past. This tendency still remains in some measure. For example it is easier for men to work as a full-time worker than women because many women are likely to cease work when they get married. Married women are expected to raise talented children whom will have graduated from a high level university, so they have to devote themselves to raise their children. In my opinion, not only women should raise children but also men should as well because men are also responsible for raising children. Moreover, raising children is hard labor, so men should help women. For example, when men take the day off, they take care of the children. In my plan, if I have children, I want to work together with my wife.

In conclusion, I want to have strong connections with people and have a loving home. To reach this, I should try to achieve a high level of face-to-face communication. Furthermore, when raising children, women should not only be the one to raise children, but men should also help as well because raising children is very difficult. Personally I think our future is bright, though there are still many problems we will have to face in the future.


Allison, Anne. 2013. Precarious Japan. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.