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Above the CloudsStatus Culture of the Modern Japanese Nobility$
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Takie Sugiyama Lebra

Print publication date: 1993

Print ISBN-13: 9780520076006

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520076006.001.0001

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Status Careers

Status Careers

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(p.285) Eight Status Careers
Above the Clouds

Takie Sugiyama Lebra

University of California Press

This chapter examines the adult careers of kazoku children, and, in so doing, becomes more in touch with the public realm, which so far has been treated largely as the ground for private, domestic life. By placing kazoku in the public arena, and by paying attention to institutional as well as individual biographies, we gain a better idea of how the upper layer of Japan's social structure as a whole was shaped. The main question here is whether kazoku status in any way affected one's career: whether it provided career opportunities and propelled advancement, or, conversely, whether it limited a career repertoire and put a ceiling on how far one could go. In other words, we want to know whether and how ascription and achievement agglutinated or repelled each other. Did personal aspirations match career choice?

Keywords:   adult careers, kazoku children, Japanese nobility, social structure, career opportunities

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