“Recruit the Women:” The Life and Career of Lt. Ethel B. Weed in Post-WWII Japan


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When: Feb 6 2019 - 12:00pm until Feb 6 2019 - 1:30pm
Where: Tokioka Room (Moore Hall 319)

Please join the Center for Japanese Studies and the East-West Center for a talk
by Dr. Malia McAndrew
EWC Visiting Scholar and Associate Professor of History at John Carroll University

Following WWII, the United States occupied Japan from 1945-1952. America’s primary goals were to demilitarize and democratize its former enemy. As head of the occupation, General Douglas MacArthur instituted women’s suffrage because he believed Japanese women to be likely supporters of the American agenda. He then tasked Lt. Ethel Weed, a low-ranking officer with the job of ensuring broad-based female political participation throughout the nation. With only four months of training in Japanese language and culture the 39-year-old American could do little on her own. Aware of her limitations, Weed recruited a cadre of internationally-known Japanese feminists who had been silenced by Japan’s wartime leadership to advise her. These women included the birth control activist Katô Shidzue, the female education pioneer Motoko Hani and the novelist Miyamoto Yuriko. Weed thus served as a lynchpin who brought together unlikely allies. This talk is based on archival materials not previously available in the U.S. or Japan.

There will be light refreshments.




Primary Contact Info:
Name: University of Hawaii Center for Japanese Studies
Phone: 808-956-2665