Sayo Masuda. Translated by G. G. Rowley. The glamorous world of big-city geisha is familiar to many readers, but little has been written of the life of hardship . Masuda’s account of being a geisha in rural Japan at a hot springs resort is at once intriguing and heartbreaking. There is nothing idyllic in her description of. (Image from Goodreads) As the title states, this is a true story of a Japanese geisha in the s and s. Beware though: it’s not the.

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At 12, she was sold to a geisha house for about 30 yen, the price of a bag of rice.

She decided to bury him next to their father, so she returned to Shiojiri. She tells them silly stories, and brings them gifts, and, most importantly, spends time with them — all of the things she never got as a child. Retrieved July 29, It is hard even to imagine how Masuda managed to surmount every difficulty that life threw at her and she emerged at the end of the account as an woman to be respected.

Iwasaki’s world was one of privileged luxury, consummate arts training, the glamour of Kyoto’s Gion Kobu district, and the wealth and prestige that came with being a high-class geiko Very recently I read Mineko Iwasaki’s Geisha: In the afterward, the translator even mentions that just the publication of the book ran her out of the town she had been living in at the time. I picked it up in Oxfam because it looked so beautiful; a slim volume with a cherry blossom kimono print on the inside and back cover.

Autobiography Of A Geisha : Sayo Masuda :

In Autobiography of a Geisha, Masuda chronicles a harsh world in which young women faced the realities of sex for sale and were deprived of their freedom and identity. You have to give her props for tenacity and never giving up no matter what that entailed.


It can be easy for readers who know little of the geisha tradition to decide that it’s one of two extremes: Thanks for this rec. She wants to be the person she is now.

Not that suffering is z. His eyes were squinty, he was going bald, and his face glowed bright red; when he sat drinking in his quilted cotton jacket, dripping with sweat and leering with satisfaction, he looked just like an octopus. It’s incrediably moving and frank portrayal of an old and often mis-understood custom. Follow Blog via Email Enter your geishx address masuea follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

To find out more, including how to control cookies, see here: As opposed to Memoirs which is based on a retelling of the life of a geisha, Autobiography is the life of Sayo Masuda in her own words, translated by G. Upon its translation into English, the auobiography received positive reviews from Liza Dalby and Arthur Golden as well as several book reviewers.

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Autobiography of a Geisha

You are commenting using your WordPress. This is not the soft, lyrical story of Arthur Golden, but the real thing, expressed by someone who was there. Be the first to ask a question about Autobiography of a Geisha. What is also amazing is how open the system was, how men brazenly used the girls and then discarded them, how many mamasans took advantage, how many turned a blind eye. Not that Masuda was a paragon of stoic resolve.


There, she caught the eye of a man named Motoyama and they quickly fell in love; however, she was unable to keep their relationship from Cockeye and had to stop seeing Motoyama. We’re featuring millions of their reader ratings on our book pages to help you find your new favourite book. When the soap business fa Masuda was born innear the town of Shiojiri in Nagano Prefecture. Cancel reply Enter your comment here Email required Address never made public.

Autobiography Of A Geisha

Oct 17, Sam Still Reading rated it really liked it Recommends it for: Furthermore, she argued that simply banning prostitution would not stop people from engaging in it, as people who wanted it would inevitably find ways. The treatment of poor young girls, outright child abuse, is chilling and disheartening to read about, even if the times and culture are different.

You empathise with her, and your heart sings sadly to the tune of her sorry tale. I’d love to know what you think, so please leave a comment below x Enter your comment here The poverty after WWII is tangible. Feb 28, Brittany rated it really liked it Shelves: The most remarkable thing about this book is the author’s voice.

Autobiography of a Geisha by Sayo Masuda

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. Sep 21, Peter rated it really liked it. Discover what to read next. Sayo Masuda had a really challenging life,which sometimes would move me to tears.

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