Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1946/8419
Murasaki Shikibu and Masuda Sayo, though not born in the same century, have a common thread, of writing about pleasure women. The term “pleasure” is used loosely, as the women Shikibu wrote about, were aristocratic girls whose parents highest goal, was to get them accepted at court, preferably in service for the Emperor. Although having an honourable position at court, the services the ladies of court performed for the Emperor or noble men were not unlike the services of the “yujo” (or courtesan / prostitute during Edo period (1600-1868) and “geisha” (women entertainers and sex partners, first seen in the late eighteenth century), who appeared later unto the scene. The possibility that these women were in any way alike was perhaps unthinkable then, but in today’s modern societies the question may be valid, considering all the sexual innuendoes in advertisements and music videos. This question as well as other topics, such as the women’s regard for the profession, how society viewed them and their feelings about their status in life, regarding all three professions, the court lady, the yujo and the geisha.