1st Edition

Inside a Japanese Sharehouse Dreams and Realities

By Caitlin Meagher Copyright 2021
    158 Pages 12 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    158 Pages 12 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This book explores social change in Japan at the most intimate site of social interaction – the home – by providing a detailed ethnography of everyday life in a sharehouse. Sharehouses, which emerged in the 2007 'sharehouse boom', are a deliberate alternative to life in the family home and are considered an experimental space for the construction of new social identities.

    Through a description of the micro-level, mundane, material interactions among residents within a mid-sized, mixed-sex sharehouse, the book considers what these interactions indicate about existing – and often conflicting – ideas about intimacy, privacy, gender, the individual, family, community, and the home.

    In so doing it highlights how sharehouse residents, though a dramatic rejection of the twentieth-century domestic model, with its ideal of the family home as a partnership between a male wage-earner and a dedicated housewife, and its implied separation of 'family' and 'outsiders', are nevertheless uneasy about overturning existing gender roles and giving precedence to the individual over community, and are regarded as a foreign import.

    Chapter 1: Introduction

    Chapter 2: Aspiration

    Chapter 3: International Exchange

    Chapter 4: Public and Private

    Chapter 5: Nuisance

    Chapter 6: Waste

    Chapter 7: Village Society

    Chapter 8: Conclusion



    Caitlin Meagher is a Visiting Assistant Professor at Skidmore College, USA.