Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Lovesick JapanSex * Marriage * Romance * Law$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Mark D. West

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780801449475

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9780801449475.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM Cornell University Press SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.cornell.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Cornell University Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in Cornell for personal use (for details see www.cornell.universitypressscholarship.com/page/privacy-policy/privacy-policy-and-legal-notice).date: 19 July 2019



(p.176) 6 Divorce
Lovesick Japan

Mark D. West

Cornell University Press

This chapter examines judicial views concerning divorce in Japan. In immediate postwar Japan, less than one out of ten marriages ended in divorce. But in the 2000s, four out of ten Japanese marriages end in divorce, a figure neither unusually high nor unusually low among developed countries. Many judges, however, seem to long for the days when couples stayed together—despite a clear absence of the emotional connection that judges use to define marriage in other contexts. The chapter shows that courts have significant power to shape marriage and divorce. The system they have created is characterized largely by rules that require less-than-happy marriages to continue over the objections of a spouse who wants to leave. Two specific aspects of judicial divorce regularly trump spousal desires: statutory “grave reason” grounds for divorce and court-created rules against at-fault divorce. In both cases, love occasionally arises, but it is largely irrelevant.

Keywords:   Japanese judges, marriage, divorce, love, married couples

Cornell Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.