Women of the Mito Domain

By Kikue Yamakawa, Kate Wildman Nakai (translator),

Book cover of Women of the Mito Domain: Recollections of Samurai Family Life

Book description

Based on the recollection of the author's mother, other relatives, and family records, this is a vivid picture of the everyday life of a samurai household in the last years of the Tokugawa period.

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Why read it?

1 author picked Women of the Mito Domain as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

Want to know how samurai women managed their high status but meager incomes? This engaging memoir takes us inside the nitty-gritty of their everyday life that was frugal by necessity. We learn how samurai women dressed, the importance they placed on meticulous grooming, and how they dealt with in-laws, concubines, and a runaway daughter. It shows how in principle samurai women were expected to practice the martial arts with the naginata (a long, thin halberd), but in fact, they were too busy with household chores to receive more than token training.

For the history buff, the memoir also paints a…

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