Episode 329 – In the Beginning, Woman Was the Sun, Part 1

This week, we start off our first ever twinned biography with a look at the early career of one of Japan’s pioneering feminists: Hiratsuka Raicho.


Craig, Teruko, trans. In the Beginning, Woman Was the Sun: The Autobiography of Hiratsuka Raicho

Tomida, Hiroko. Hiratsuka Raicho and Early Japanese Feminism. 

Bardsley, Jan. “Seito and the Resurgence of Writing by Women.” in The Columbia Companion to Modern East Asian Literature.

Anne Lee’s awesome piece on Hiratsuka Raicho


The first issue of Seito, from 1911.
Hiratsuka Raicho as a young woman.

In addition to working on the magazine, the Seitosha had regular outings like this summer getaway in 1912. Hiratsuka is seated second from left; the man next to her is Ikuta Choko, a translator who taught at a woman’s college, which is how he fell in with the Seitosha — he was quickly accepted as one of their allies.Japan



4 thoughts on “Episode 329 – In the Beginning, Woman Was the Sun, Part 1”

  1. Thank you for the podcast, I really like it! I’d just like to correct you in one thing – Henrik Ibsen was a Norwegian playwright, not Danish.

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