At the turn of the twentieth century, Japan embarked on a mission to modernize its society and industry. For the first time, young Japanese women were persuaded to leave their families and enter the factory.Managing Womenfocuses on Japan's interwar textile industry, examining how factory managers, social reformers, and the state created visions of a specifically Japanese femininity. Faison finds that female factory workers were constructed as "women" rather than as "workers" and that this womanly ideal was used to develop labor-management practices, inculcate moral and civic values, and develop a strategy for containing union activities and strikes. In an integrated analysis of gender ideology and ideologies of nationalism and ethnicity, Faison shows how this discourse on women's wage work both produced and reflected anxieties about women's social roles in modern Japan.
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