- Japan Society of Sport Anthropology
- スポーツ人類學研究 (ISSN:13454358)
- vol.2002, no.4, pp.17-40, 2003-03-31 (Released:2011-08-16)
Women's Sumo wrestling was performed as a show from the middle of the 17th century (the middle of the Edo period) to 1950's in Japan. These women's Sumo show have been regarded as an obscene show.The purpose of this study is considering the cultural characters of the women's Sumo show of the Edo period by examining literature of those days.The factors that materialize women's Sumo wrestling as show are as follows. 1. Sumo wrestling has appeals as show. These are the outstanding physical strength and techniques which wrestlers have.2. Female wrestlers might be extraordinary beings by wearing the symbol of the gender of the opposite sex (Sumo wrestling) on her body.3. That female wrestlers expose her naked body and wrestle with a blind man attracted a spectator's sexual interest. The obscenity appears also in “Shiko-Na”.4. Since there was a sense of values that likes an active woman in Edo, it is thought that female wrestler's Sumo wrestling might exist as a show.So, the women's Sumo show of the Edo period was not a mere obscene or “erotic and grotesque” show.