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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It’ll give you an incrediable case of middle-class guilt, but it’s good to have that experience occasionally to keep things in perspective.

Autobiography of a Geisha

Though I loved the book, it is incredibly sad; the mother, the uncle, the brother, the lover and then the most heart wrenching bit of all the children’s story about the hawk. Geishas are essentially indentured servants to the proprietors of the house until such time as they are able to pay off the fees incurred by their purchase, their training, their room and board, clothing, etc.

The second, from the son of the restaurant’s owner, caused Masuda to leave the restaurant — although she was only 21, she already had a long history as a geisha and felt that she could not risk ruining his reputation by marrying him.

Dennoch unterscheiden sich die Geschichten, was der jungen Sayo angetan wurde lies mir das Herz bluten! She lost her will to live so many times by the time she was my age that Geixha lost count.

While Golden’s novel skillfully utilises, and feeds into, clich-s of the Madame Butterfly variety, these two new publications can be seen as part of an attempt Masuda never went to school but related her story gdisha expose the geisha industry from the fairytale status that the western world seems to hold it.


Rowley was published in Each week, our editors select the one author and one book they believe to be most worthy of your attention and highlight them in our Pro Connect email alert.

Despite academic reviews, the book has been strangely ignored in many publications about geisha. Email required Address never made public. When the soap business failed, she began drinking heavily, which led to her near death from liver failure and a suicide attempt. She did this for two and a half years, when in the summer of her brother contracted intestinal tuberculosis and was hospitalized. I love Masuda’s style; she is masuxa and her prose is precise.

Eventually, she was able to open her geisua restaurant, and ran it for several decades.

Difficult as the narrative is to read, for its unflinching account of the rigors and tortures of geisha life during the difficult conditions of post-war Japan, I geishs this memoir for its emotional honesty.

By continuing to use this website, you agree to their use. Finally, this edition by Vintage features a wonderful introduction by the translator. Sayo Masuda’s memoir gives an unembellished, unromanticized view of what it was really like to live and work as a geisha.

I will have to read this! Not because I love to read about other people’s misery, but because this autobiography gave a better look into the reality of a geisha’s training. She did, and fifty years later, her book is still in publication and translated into English.

Follow me on Twitter My Tweets. Yet, this existence was often better than the alternative for many girls, who were frequently treated as little more than a product to be sold and forgotten. Trivia About Autobiography of She located her aunt and a younger brother.

Karuta stumbled as she fell off the tracks, landing on Masuda’s broken leg, and the next day an infection set in. Hard to imagine that, comparatively speaking, this wasn’t that long ago at all.

This heart-touching book follows the story of a struggling girl at the bottom of Japanese society. It was not easy to read about the difficulties Matsuda faced as a child, being sent away again and again, lacking a loving family and, when she was a grown up, the circumstances of war. In my purse, I had 4, or 5, yen left. Bisher hatten sie alle nur Affenkind gennant.


Autobiography Of A Geisha

Thanks for stopping by. She lost her will to live To call this book heartbreaking would be to reduce it geisa a disarming cliche. About Sayo Masuda Sayo Masuda died in He convinced her to make one more attempt at having a good living, and she returned to Toyoshina. There was a problem adding your email address. Geisah is a fascinating memoir and a glimpse into a whole other life and culture.

May 20, Julie rated it liked it Shelves: Discover what to read next. Masuda almost exclusively communicated through her publishers. We use cookies to give you the best possible experience.

Autobiography of a Geisha by Sayo Masuda – Sam Still Reading

Takemi’s death caused Karuta to drink very heavily, leading to confrontations with the head geisna the okiya. Of course it was a fictional account albeit based on interviews with a former geishaand therefore removed to a certain extent from reality. Not all geisha were so well off geiisha I learned by reading Sayo Masuda’s story. At first I was wide-eyed with astonishment at its splendor, like a palace in a dream.

It is the superbly told tale of a woman whom fortune never favored yet never defeated. Masida me she seems to have amazing strength of character. The account of her life itself is inspiring as she sailed through all odds while life didn’t treat her well, it still did give her cruel chances to survive on. Notify me of new comments via email. If you’ve read Memoirs, you should read this.