Sexual Harassment in Intercollegiate Football Teams in Japan: Ethnography of Female Workers

Monday, 16 July 2018: 18:30
Oral Presentation
Megumi SEKI, Kyoto Koka Women's University, Japan
Sexual harassment has been a topic of special interest to social scientists. Based on my previous study (PhD dissertation 2016), this study, first, compares three ethnographies in intercollegiate football teams in Japan to show the sexual harassment that women working as “manêjâ” (Unlike the English word “manager”, these manêjâs are usually female students who assist the team) experience daily. As an ethnographer, I employed participant observation, interviews and questionnaire survey.

Here I found that manêjâs are unaware of the sexual harassment or pretending that she hasn't noticed it. Manêjâs are pressure to socialize with the male players, and in fact it strengthened and maintained the dominant power of the male players. To analyze this phenomenon, I look at the similarity between the club activity system and “membership-based employment” system in Japan.

The Japanese style of regular employment is one under which there are no limits on the duties, hours, or location of work and the employment contracts rarely include detailed job descriptions. In contrast to the style seen in other countries, where the duties, hours, and location are ordinarily limited known as “job-based employment.” Because even the intercollegiate varsity teams won’t require tryouts, students need no skill to join the team, so as manêjâ positions. The gender binary notions, “boys=players” ”girls= manêjâs”, plus heterosexual norm make the positions vulnerable to sexual harassment.

In this particular paper however, I attempt to reexamine the method of my data collection of the above study by applying Institutional Ethnography. As a newcomer to Institutional Ethnography, by reviewing the way of my data collection - i.e. how I approached to my “objects” of my investigation, for example, I intend to show that these manêjâs actual lived experience and activities are embedded in the institutional relations.