History of Geishas

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Topics: Geisha
History of Geishas Beautiful and mystical, exotic and refined…this is what a geisha is. Geishas go far back in Japanese culture, with the first geishas really being men. Some people perceive geishas to be a form of prostitution, but there is more to this cultural affair then you may realize. Becoming a vast geisha involves great discipline and reverence. Geishas start training from a young age and require several skills such as conversational and even artistic. From being sold at an adolescent phase, quantities of children are being raised in this kind of lifestyle from the very beginning. However, families stopped selling their children once the mid-20th century came about. The history of geishas continue to expand today, but it roots come from the very beginning with the earliest geishas, geisha performances and acts, the first brothels, and artistic ways of geishas. The original geishas were in fact men, taking place in the 1600s. Shocking? Indeed. Who would have thought that men played a part of the well known geisha role? But, due to the demand for women from the men, (and for the actuality that females were not as eager for the entertainment purposes by male geishas) male geishas quickly deteriorated. Performance skills are one that a geisha must particularly exceed in. Performing was really where it all began for the female geishas. In the early 11th century, two noble women created a new dance to entertain the warriors, and it all kind of built up from there on. Typically, geishas would perform for royalty, and if they got lucky then they could become a concubine to the emperor. Traditional geisha performances were the sole entertainment of the event. A geisha would usually start by greeting and socializing with her guest. She would begin by serving warm sake (popular Japanese liquor), kind of acting as a hostess. She would then gracefully rest on her knees, starting conversation and flirting just the right amount. Once the dining is over, then the


Cited: Arai, Taikomochi. "Japan 's Traditional Male Entertainer." October 13, 2002. May 06, 2006. . Golden, Arthur. Memoirs of a Geisha. New York: Random House, Inc., 1999. May 01, 2006. Layton, Julia. "How Geisha Work." June 08, 2001. May 06, 2006. MacIntosh, Peter. "Geisha Photography." August 25, 2003. May 05, 2006. The World Book Encyclopedia. USA: Field Enterprises Educational Corporation, 1962. May 07, 2006.

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