Book Talk: STRANGER IN THE SHOGUN’S CITY: A JAPANESE WOMAN AND HER WORLD

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STRANGER IN THE SHOGUN’S CITY: A JAPANESE WOMAN AND HER WORLD

Book talk by Amy Stanley, Professor of History, Northwestern University

Tuesday, September 29, 2020, 5:30 - 6:45 p.m., Zoom Webinar

Free and open to the public. Registration required.

The Center for Asia Pacific Studies at the University of San Francisco welcomes Amy Stanley, Professor of History at Northwestern University, for a book talk that presents a lively introduction to the social history of the great city of Edo (now Tokyo) in the first half of the nineteenth century, focusing on the unconventional life of a woman named Tsuneno. 

Born to a Buddhist temple family in Japan’s snow country, Tsuneno ran away to the big city after being married and divorced three times. In Edo, she worked in maid service for a prominent bannerman, lived in the kabuki theater district, married (and then divorced, and then remarried) a masterless samurai, and ultimately ended up in the service of the famous City Magistrate, Tōyama Kagemoto. The talk uses Tsuneno’s and her family’s letters, maps of Edo, and woodblock prints to illuminate life among common people, discussing the possibilities and constraints facing women, in particular, as they navigated the shogun’s capital.

Amy Stanley is a Professor of History at Northwestern University. She is the author of Selling Women: Prostitution, Households, and the Market in Early Modern Japan (UC Press, 2012) and Stranger in the Shogun's City: A Japanese Woman and Her World (Scribner, 2020), as well as articles in The Journal of Japanese Studies, The Journal of Asian Studies, and the American Historical Review. She received her PhD in East Asian Languages and Civilizations from Harvard in 2007, and she has held fellowships from the Japan Foundation, the Japan-U.S. Friendship Commission, and the National Endowment for the Humanities.