- 一般社団法人 日本体育学会
- 体育学研究 (ISSN:04846710)
- vol.57, no.1, pp.177-189, 2012 (Released:2012-06-02)
This study was conduct to understand how women's physical education was promoted during the development of Japan, focusing especially on the Taisho era (1912-1926). First, I reviewed critical opinions about physical education for women prevalent during this period, in order to reveal details of difficulties in promoting it. Secondly, through collection of relevant documents, I examined the measures for promotion of women's physical education that had been discussed during this period. Thirdly, I reviewed the criticism of these promotion measures, in order to reveal the tendencies and problems prevalent at the time. On the basis of these reviews, I consider that the main reasons why the promotion of women's physical education was not successful in the Taisho era were: 1) women's physical education was not consistent with the traditional social norm of the time, 2) theoretical studies of physical education had not yet been developed, and 3) people at that timetended to regard ‘unhealthy-looking’ women as beautiful (for example in the works of Takehisa Yumeji). Since it was difficult to solve these problems, some advocates tried to promote women's physical education by emphasizing the beneficial effects of gymnastics rather than conducting theoretical studies. This was promoted by proactively creating a new concept of women's physical education such as appreciation for ‘health and beauty’. The measures for promotion of physical education for women in the Taisho era placed emphasis on advertising physical education more effectively rather than improving it qualitatively. The promotion of women's physical education in this manner was criticized by other advocates of physical education, and I consider that this was one reason why the quality of women's physical education remained low.