Japanese Mothers & Obentos

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Japanese Mothers & Obentos by Mind Map: Japanese Mothers & Obentos

1. The Obento

1.1. "...highly crafted elaborations of food: a multitude of miniature portions, artistically designed and precisely arranged" (p. 329).

1.2. The key element in Japanese food is appearance. (p. 331).

1.3. There are numerous rules for creating a proper obento. (p. 337).

2. Author's Argument

2.1. "...the obento is invested with a gendered state ideology." (p. 330).

2.2. "Ideological State Apparatus (ISA)" ... "exert power...through ideology." (p. 330).

2.2.1. Institutions that indoctrinate people to see the world a certain way.

3. Roles

3.1. The Child

3.1.1. Teachers encourage students to finish obentos, quickly.

3.1.2. In school, it is important/stressed for kids to "do as one is told." (p. 334). In nursery schools, which are private, they stress how to "become a Japanese student" more than reading and writing. (p. 334).

3.1.3. In the author's experience, the nursery school cared more about her son consuming the obento than learning Japanese. (p. 336).

3.2. The Mother

3.2.1. Spends hours of time in preparation/execution of the obento. If she didn't, she would not be considered a good mother.

3.2.2. Author claims that the obento is a representation of the woman herself. (p. 339).

4. Obento Symbolism

4.1. A ritual for both mother and child.

4.2. Meant as a sign of committment from mother to child and inspires her child to be a committed student. (p. 335).