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Gender and Law in the Japanese Imperium$
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Susan L. Burns and Barbara J. Brooks

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780824837150

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824837150.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM HAWAII SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.hawaii.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Hawaii University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in HSO for personal use.date: 25 September 2021

Burning Down the House

Burning Down the House

Gender and Jury in a Tokyo Courtroom, 1928

(p.159) Chapter 6 Burning Down the House
Gender and Law in the Japanese Imperium

Darryl Flaherty

University of Hawai'i Press

This chapter explores the trial of Yamafuji Kanko, a wife, mother, and small-business owner who was charged with arson. It argues that while Yamafuji's crime was commonplace, her trial attracted the attention of the public, legal officials, intellectuals, and politicians, as well as the press, because Yamafuji was the first defendant to be judged by a jury during Japan's brief experiment with jury trials between 1928 and 1943. Because women were excluded from jury service and male jurors were subject to age, tax, and residency restrictions, her case was adjudicated by twelve men who were representatives of Tokyo's old and new middle classes. This chapter argues that these jurors came to stand in for the (male) public, with the result that ideas about women, their place in society, and their potential for criminality came into play in Yamafuji's trial.

Keywords:   jury, Yamafuji Kanko, Yamafuji's trial, arson, jury trials, male jury, gender

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