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  #1301  
Old 04-09-2021, 12:08 AM
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Quote:
Kasahara said the current imperial succession rule that bars women from ascending the throne "has nothing to do with gender discrimination" and that eligibility for successors should be expanded to include female descendants from the male line.

However, Mikuriya acknowledged it is "high time" to abandon the argument that the long-held tradition of the imperial family is above the current global trend of promoting gender equality.

"The imperial family will cease to exist if it is ignored by the public. Therefore, it has no choice but to go along with the global tide (on gender equality) if it is to continue to gain public support," he said.
That quote is an amazing admission, imho. Finally someone in Japan is highlighting that if the IHA, Japanese Government and ultra Conservatives continue on their obsession over the current succession rules and not move with the times, the Japanese Imperial Family will become irrelevant. More of that conversation please!
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  #1302  
Old 04-09-2021, 02:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Muhler View Post
I find the concept of male social climbing interesting.

Surely the women in question know they are courted for their position, rather than for love. I.e. it will be a marriage of convenience.
Do they, so to speak, sell themselves dearly?
Or do they take one for the family? I.e. allowing their father to basically adopt a suitable son-in-law? - After all in Japanese culture you are indebted to your parents.
What is the balance in such a marriage?
The husband is indebted to his wife, for his new position. Does that mean that he will be subservient to his wife? Or will he take the traditional position of the Japanese husband in being the head of the family?
In what happens if she divorce him?

And can we expect Princess Aiko, to be courted by a social climber?
TBF, in Japan (like in any other countries in Asia), it's not unusual for the parents to "pick" the suitable partner for their child. The couple then is introduced and if there's no big deal breaker, they marry. Along the way they will/can learn to respect (and maybe, love) their spouse. It could be like "Hey, I know this nice young man (read: potentially has bright future), do you want to meet him?" For politician, it could be a member in his party. It's "safer" to court the parents than courting the daughter. In many case, the daughter doesn't really mind to be a "typical" wife too.

Add to the problem is family honour. Other than the parents will want their child happiness, there's also this preconception that the child's failure is a shame for the family as a whole. So the parents may do anything not to let it happen or, at the very least, to cover it up from public (hence the hikikomori). The parents' love then turns into saving face as Japanese values their honour among other.

Let's say, Mako married Kei, not long after Kei went bankrupt. How would it look for a daughter of the crown prince living in an LDK with her jobless husband? Either Fumihito would have to keep giving her (them) money or he had to use whatever connection he had crown prince so Kei could get a "respectable" job. And how the public will think about it, especially among the younger generation who's facing a dire employment issue currently happening in Japan? Let's not pretend that Kei would get nothing from his marriage to Mako, at the very least he'll get a golden key to enter high society (=> opportunity). That's why in the past, the husbands were among (former) kuge or daimyo families. Background check is important.

After all, Japan is still operating within "who-know-who". Skip the "after-work-drink" with your colleague or refuse your senpai/senior's invitation to a drink (which you'll be the one who pay), you can forget getting promotion in the near future no matter your achievement (unless you can snatch the sacho/manager's daughter, of course).

Adopting son in law mostly happens in old establishment (by old, I mean centuries old) such as tea house or ryokan. Depend on the type of bussiness they run, the wife still have her own role as okami (proprietress) who takes responsibilities for all matters caused by running their ryokans or restaurants. The son in law usually is picked among employee/apprentice based on his competency/knowledge of the said bussiness. Say, it's wagashi shop, the daughter marries one of the chef then afterward the husband will head the kitchen (wagashi production) while the wife (the daughter of past shop owner) will handle the front store (dealing with customer, finance, etc). When the heir is a son, he has more freedom to pick a wife, but still after (and sometimes even before) they marry, she will undergo training to be an okami (done by her mother in law), but in this case as okami she won't have as much responsibility than the heiress-okami.

The thing is, for some people, marriage is just part of life, something to do when you reach a certain age. And love is not as "glorified" as in the western (it's so weird to say "I love you" to your own parents. A 6 years may say "daisuki, ka-chan" to his mum and she may say it back, but when a 20 years old tells his mum that sentence, he might wish the earth to shallow him while his mum will ask him "what's wrong?" (with frown on her face)). Even saying "daisuki" or "aishiteru" to your spouse is just weird, the more modern couple may choose to use "I love you" instead.

Not to worry though, those stay-at-home wives in those loveless marriages are not always the innocent "victim" in this kind of "arrangement". There's a relatively new Japanese expression "heijitsu hirugao tsuma" which refers to housewives having afternoon affairs while their husband's are working (usually with a younger men).
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  #1303  
Old 04-09-2021, 11:33 AM
Muhler's Avatar
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Most fascinating.

Thank you very much, Yukari, for your thorough explanation.
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  #1304  
Old 05-12-2021, 06:02 PM
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Inheritance question

Does the IF inherit money from generation to generation.

As Emperor or Crown Prince is there an “Estate” left to children or grandchildren, or to the benefit of married daughters?

I am fascinated by the IF

Greetings to All
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  #1305  
Old 06-12-2021, 01:40 AM
Majesty
 
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Japan mulls maintaining the current order of imperial succession - Kyodo News
Quote:
[...]

The Japanese government's advisory panel on the issue, chaired by former Keio University President Atsushi Seike, heard from a total of 21 experts from various fields in six meetings from March 23 through Monday, but few were of the opinion that the current order should be changed immediately.

[...]

The results of meetings will be organized into key points including positions on female or matrilineal imperial members in the line of succession, the current rule requiring women marrying commoners to abandon their imperial status, and adoption of male heirs from former branches of the imperial family.

[...]

In the last of the expert meetings on Monday, novelist Risa Wataya said it is with the times to welcome patrilineal imperial succession by women, but expressed more conservative views regarding an emperor descending from the maternal line.

Machiko Satonaka, a manga artist known for depicting female monarchs in her works, agreed it is natural for women from the paternal line to be eligible to succeed the throne.

But Hisashi Matsumoto, a professor of Shinto studies at Kokugakuin University, objected to the idea, saying, "We should refrain from lightly changing rules that are based on historical circumstances," and called matrilineal inheritance "unthinkable."

The six-person government panel, which was formed amid mounting concern over the dwindling number of imperial family members, will hold its seventh meeting on June 16 to discuss the views collected from experts.
Japan Govt to Report to Diet on Imperial Succession in July | Nippon.com
Quote:
The Japanese government plans to submit a report to the Diet, Japan's parliament, as early as July on ways to ensure stable Imperial succession, government sources said Monday.

[...]

The report will not say whether Japan should accept female emperors or emperors in the maternal bloodline of the Imperial Family, or whether female Imperial Family members should be allowed to establish family branches after marriage, according to the sources.

[...]
Imperial succession issue unlikely to be solved by next election | The Japan Times (requires free membership account)
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  #1306  
Old 06-12-2021, 03:27 AM
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Hardly surprising unfortunately.

A see-we-are-doing-something-while-doing-nothing panel.
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  #1307  
Old 06-19-2021, 08:21 AM
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I think the succession is not a problem now. There are 2 heirs: Akishino and his son.
Hisahito is being raised as the future emperor, so it wouldn't be fair to change the rules during his training. Also, Aiko is 20years and she's not prepared to reign. Personally, I think that rules could be change for the future, without affecting the current heirs. In Sweden the new succession law was backdated and so the crown prince Carl Philip was "dethroned" by his elder sister Victoria. I have never understood why CP was deprived of his right. Norway managed it better, because Haakon remained the crown prince, even if Martha was the 1st child, and new succession law had effects just for the future.
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  #1308  
Old 06-19-2021, 10:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eloisa View Post
I think the succession is not a problem now. There are 2 heirs: Akishino and his son.
Hisahito is being raised as the future emperor, so it wouldn't be fair to change the rules during his training. Also, Aiko is 20years and she's not prepared to reign. (...)
Interesting take.
Yes, Aiko will be 20 this year and she might be in her 30s the law to allow female emperor passed (if it ever happen) and by that time she's lived with the mindset that at some point she would leave the Imperial family, learning to live as commoner instead of as tennō.

At the same time, the opposition towards restoring male from the former imperial branch is that they have lived as commoner all this time so they need to learn how to be royal (in the case of adult male instead of adopting young kids to be trained early)

So yes, it seems that if there is a change of succession law, most likely it will be for Hisahito's children and no Aiko(whatever name she'd pick)-tennō.

Edit: Not that I don't support equality (aka female emperor), but honestly I'm more interested to see Japan first female PM than josei tennō. (Despite the scandal, at least South Korea can claim that they'd elected female President).
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  #1309  
Old 06-19-2021, 10:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eloisa View Post
I think the succession is not a problem now. There are 2 heirs: Akishino and his son.
Hisahito is being raised as the future emperor, so it wouldn't be fair to change the rules during his training. Also, Aiko is 20years and she's not prepared to reign. Personally, I think that rules could be change for the future, without affecting the current heirs. In Sweden the new succession law was backdated and so the crown prince Carl Philip was "dethroned" by his elder sister Victoria. I have never understood why CP was deprived of his right. Norway managed it better, because Haakon remained the crown prince, even if Martha was the 1st child, and new succession law had effects just for the future.

In Sweden the succession law was already worked out and passed once in Parliament (it had to be paseed twice, with a General Election between) when Carl Philip was born, this is the reason that he had to make place for his sister. One can say he was simply born at the wrong time, because if he had born 8 months later the new successon law had been already in force.
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  #1310  
Old 06-19-2021, 10:17 AM
Heir Apparent
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eloisa View Post
I think the succession is not a problem now. There are 2 heirs: Akishino and his son.
Hisahito is being raised as the future emperor, so it wouldn't be fair to change the rules during his training. Also, Aiko is 20years and she's not prepared to reign. Personally, I think that rules could be change for the future, without affecting the current heirs. In Sweden the new succession law was backdated and so the crown prince Carl Philip was "dethroned" by his elder sister Victoria. I have never understood why CP was deprived of his right. Norway managed it better, because Haakon remained the crown prince, even if Martha was the 1st child, and new succession law had effects just for the future.
Welcome to the forum, and thank you for your contribution!

In Sweden, the change to gender equal succession was not backdated; in fact, while it was approved by Parliament in 1979, its effects were delayed until 1980. Nevertheless, Crown Prince Carl Philip (born 1979) was an infant and never knew the difference.

For the most part, I agree that it would probably be unfair to Aiko and Hisahito to disrupt their educations and expectations for the future at this stage of their lives. But moving to increase the number of heirs in the next ten years or so could very well lighten the burden on Hisahito once he begins the search for a suitable consort. As matters stand, I imagine the knowledge that Hisahito's wife will surely be blamed for causing a political storm if she fails to deliver a healthy son will raise the difficulty of finding an acceptable wife.
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  #1311  
Old 06-20-2021, 08:34 AM
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An article from The Mainichi in May observed that even experts participating in the public discussions of the government panel were exploiting the unpopularity of Princess Mako's unofficial fiancé Kei Komuro for the purpose of arguing against female-line imperial family membership and succession.

Money row tied to Princess Mako's partner casts shadow over debate on female-line emperors - The Mainichi

At the panel's second meeting on April 8, one of the participants stated, "If a female Imperial Family member got married to a commoner, that man would become a member of the Imperial Household." The expert, though not naming Komuro specifically, apparently had him in mind when expressing reservations about female emperors and female-line emperors.

The expert also insisted that a way be opened for male-line males of former Imperial branch families deprived of their Imperial status in the wake of World War II to be reinstated to the Imperial Household, arguing, "If we were to accept men who had heretofore no ties to the Imperial Household into the Imperial Family, then there should be no problem to readmit those who used to be part of the Imperial Family."

Professor Hidetsugu Yagi of Reitaku University also told reporters following the April 8 meeting, "Imperial succession by female-line emperors means, for example, a child born to Princess Mako and her husband would become the emperor. If you imagine that kind of specific scenario, then you will be able to understand what it means to allow Imperial succession by emperors of female lineage."

[...]

One source close to the government indicated concern that conservatives citing the financial dispute in their arguments against female-line emperors would adversely impact debate on stabilizing the Imperial succession.

"Komuro's case may be easy to understand, but it is a special case," they commented.

Should Prince Hisahito become engaged to a controversial woman in the future, for some reason I doubt that these same experts will be prepared to argue that men should leave the imperial family on marriage and male succession should be banned...
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  #1312  
Old 06-26-2021, 10:31 AM
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Another article covering the same issue:

FOCUS: Japan princess' boyfriend made issue in imperial succession debate

To help ensure stable succession, LDP conservatives have called for enabling unmarried male patrilineal descendants of former imperial branches to join the imperial family through adoption or marriage, if they want to. The current Imperial House Law bans adoption into the royal family.

Members of the 11 former branches who share with the imperial family a common ancestor some 600 years ago abandoned their status in 1947, two years after the end of World War II.

[Journalist Yoshiko Sakurai, one of the 21 experts] argued that if one agreed with the idea of a commoner joining the imperial family through marriage, one would have no reason to object to the conservatives' counterproposal.

"If it is acceptable for a person who has never been a member of the imperial family to become one because he has married a female member, why is it strange for a person who was a member of the imperial family only a few decades ago to return?"

I would say that it would be strange because a person who abandoned their royal status in 1947 would be 74 years old this year at the youngest, and the addition of more men who are in their mid-70s or older will not help to ensure a stable supply of heirs or working royals as the family shrinks over the coming decades.

Being a patrilineal descendant of a former member of the imperial family is clearly not the same as being a former member of the imperial family.

My own question would be "If it is acceptable for a person who has never been a member of the imperial family to become one because she has married a male member, why is it strange for a person who has never been a member of the imperial family to become one because he has married a female member?"

Top government spokesman Katsunobu Kato said he'd like the panel to "take discussions deeper beyond personal cases."

I agree with the government. Those seizing on Mako's choice of partner to make the case against female succession, or in favor of bypassing the Akishino branch for Aiko or former branch families, should remember that Hisahito may become engaged to a person who is strongly opposed by the public, Aiko may become engaged to a person who is strongly opposed by the public, and the boys and young men from the former imperial branch families may become engaged to people who are strongly opposed by the public.

"Within the ruling party, there is a longing for (Princess Aiko) to ascend the throne," a senior government official said, referring to the Liberal Democratic Party headed by Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga.

Several experts also hinted at support for Princess Aiko's ascension during the meetings, with one going as far as saying, "There are many people who say the world would become a brighter place if (she) became (reigning) empress."

Over 60 percent of the 21 experts voiced support for allowing female monarchs, but some members with conservative views strongly opposed the idea.

I wonder if the "senior government official" is stressing the absence of a consensus to justify not attempting to restore former patrilineal branches.
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  #1313  
Old 07-02-2021, 01:50 AM
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Japan to Discuss 2 Proposals to Tackle Shrinking Imperial Family | Nippon.com
Quote:
A Japanese government panel tasked with considering ways to ensure stable Imperial succession has agreed that it will mainly discuss two proposals for securing enough number of Imperial Family members.

At the eighth meeting of the panel on Wednesday, participants agreed that they will mainly discuss a plan to allow female members to retain their Imperial Family status after getting married, and a plan to use the adoption system to restore the Imperial Family status of male descendants in the family's paternal line who have left the family.

[...]
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  #1314  
Old 07-02-2021, 02:21 AM
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That panel is in line with the national-conservatives views.

Women are allowed back in the fold if they have a son - otherwise they are no doubt still out.

And if they won't return to the imperial family they can give up a son for adoption.

Because daughters cannot, will not, must not, shall not ascend the throne. Never ever, no.
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  #1315  
Old 07-02-2021, 03:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Muhler View Post
(...)

Women are allowed back in the fold if they have a son - otherwise they are no doubt still out.

And if they won't return to the imperial family they can give up a son for adoption.

(...)
I'm sorry, Muhler, but where did you read this?
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  #1316  
Old 07-02-2021, 04:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yukari View Post
I'm sorry, Muhler, but where did you read this?
That's my interpretation of the purpose of the panels.

The two proposed alternatives are exactly what the national conservatives advocate.
- And they have decisive political influence at present...
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  #1317  
Old 07-02-2021, 05:26 AM
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What the traditionalist want is paternal line, so even if the princesses have son, he will be of maternal line. Besides, this said son would only be born after marriage, so if the princesses leave the IF after marriage and return after have son, wouldn't it only make things complicated?

What they might aim is probably similar to BRF, the princesses remain member and continue doing royal duty after marriage, but not her husband and children (similar to Margaret and Anne of Britain). The option of princess creating new branch would lead to concern over budget.

As for the adoption, it could be something like Prince Hitachi adopts a son from the former miyake to be the 2nd prince of Hitachi. (Something similar could be arranged for Mikasa).

Then about the problem about what if Hisahito doesn't have son, I'm pretty sure the IHA would be ready to shove IVF sex selection if necessary since there's no rule that the heir should be conceived naturally.
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  #1318  
Old 07-02-2021, 07:45 AM
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Alas, if there is one thing this thread has taught us, it is that they simply do not want a woman on the throne.

Because it sure is complicated to find an heir in a now disused branch, so to speak. It's someone who is not prepared for the role, who is unknown to the public and who may not be particularly keen on suddenly becoming the next emperor.
And formally adopting a son, that's really only for a true emergency when there are no one left in Imperial family fit to rule.
It has even been suggested that an official concubine could be a solution.

- So it takes a lot of arguments to persuade me from believing this isn't about a total unwillingness to see a woman on the throne. And that IMO is silly.
Especially when the current Imperial Couple have a daughter in perfect working order.
It simply makes no logic sense.

As you point out: What is the difference between a daughter of the Empress and the son of an ex-princess? They are both of a maternal line.
Except for one little difference: One is a male.

So my previous argument stands: No woman must ever ascend the throne.
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  #1319  
Old 07-02-2021, 08:29 AM
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The point yukari was making was that the traditionalists are unwilling to see a woman or a son from a maternal line on the throne.

The article which Prisma posted makes clear that only restoration of paternal-line male descendants is being contemplated by the panel, not maternal-line male descendants:

"At the eighth meeting of the panel on Wednesday, participants agreed that they will mainly discuss a plan to allow female members to retain their Imperial Family status after getting married, and a plan to use the adoption system to restore the Imperial Family status of male descendants in the family's paternal line who have left the family."


Quote:
Originally Posted by Muhler View Post
What is the difference between a daughter of the Empress and the son of an ex-princess? They are both of a maternal line.
Except for one little difference: One is a male.
The traditionalists are opposed to allowing either one on the throne. In the same way that Westerners who want to keep male-only or male-preference succession claim that the children of Queen Margrethe II are "Monpezats" and not "real Glücksburgs" or the children of Crown Princess Victoria are "Westlings" and not "real Bernadottes", Japanese proponents of male-only succession claim that a reigning empress's or blood princess's child would belong to a different family, that is, the family of their father, and not to the imperial line (unless the father of the child happened to descend in paternal line from the imperial family).
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  #1320  
Old 07-02-2021, 08:57 AM
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The traditionalist have actually proposed accepting a son from a maternal line, by all accounts despite having closer female alternatives.
The suggestion can hardly be interpreted as anything than that the emperor of Japan must be just that, a man.

I must confess that I have never heard anyone arguing that descendants of QMII are not "genuine" Glücksburgers. On the contrary in fact.
It is probably possible to find one or two on an island somewhere who believe that though, so I'll take your argument.

But the topic remains the same.
The traditionalists are saying: Of course we don't mind a female ruling empress - just not on the throne...
So we propose option A. B, C... M, N, O, P - before that happens.
Instead of following the genes, which according to the traditionalists own wish about maintaining the Imperial Line as pure as possible, would be the most logic step.

So I have an Eiffel Tower for sale for anyone who genuinely believe this isn't about gender.

I say: Traditionalists, say openly you don't want a woman on the throne. That at least is honest.

There is one alternative the traditionalist have not considered though: Putting the question up for a referendum.
Wonder why...
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