Womenomics, 'Equality' and Abe's Neo-liberal strategy to make Japanese women shine

Dalton, E 2017, 'Womenomics, 'Equality' and Abe's Neo-liberal strategy to make Japanese women shine', Social Science Japan Journal, vol. 20, no. 1, pp. 95-105.


Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Journal Articles

Title Womenomics, 'Equality' and Abe's Neo-liberal strategy to make Japanese women shine
Author(s) Dalton, E
Year 2017
Journal name Social Science Japan Journal
Volume number 20
Issue number 1
Start page 95
End page 105
Total pages 11
Publisher Oxford University Press
Abstract By international measurements, Japan fares poorly on gender equality. With the second largest gender pay gap and the worst record for women's political representation among OECD countries, Japanese women have limited access to positions of power and influence. The government has begun to address these inequalities with a raft of policies that attempt to bridge these chronic gender gaps, with the recent policies of the Abe administration being referred to as 'womenomics'. Heralded by many as an important step in the right direction, womenomics has also been criticised as a misguided co-optation of feminism. This Survey discusses the implications of the 'long-working-hours' culture on gender equality policies and the implementation of womenomics within a climate of neo-liberal management practices justified through chronic economic stagnation. Far from the empowering outcomes it rhetorically espouses, this evaluation suggests that womenomics is further exacerbating the bipolarisation of Japanese women into two groups: a small elite minority capable of assimilating to masculinised working patterns versus the vast majority of women ghettoized into insecure underpaid 'non-regular' work that denies access to crucial benefits.
Subject Government and Politics of Asia and the Pacific
Keyword(s) womenomics
women's economic participation
gender equality
Japan
Copyright notice © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press in conjunction with the University of Tokyo. All rights reserved.
ISSN 1468-2680
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