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Being A Broad in Japan: Everything a Western woman needs to survive and thrive Paperback – July 19, 2001

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Editorial Reviews


... a necessary resource for a wide range of women. -- Kansai Time Out, July 2001

No stone is left unturned. Pover covers everything ... -- The Daily Yomiuri, September 15, 2001

From the Author

From the foreword to 'Being A Broad in Japan'

When I first came to Japan in 1996, I wasn’t prepared. Twenty-one thousand Western women move to Japan every year and most of them aren’t prepared either. I don’t mean being prepared for the language or the culture; I mean being prepared for what it is like to be a Western woman living in Japan.

Throughout 1999 I interviewed about two hundred Western women living in Japan. Most of them were women from the United States, Canada, Europe, Australia, and New Zealand. They were from different ethnic and social backgrounds, and of different ages and sexual orientations. Employment and marital statuses differed. Some were here for six months, some for most of their adult lives. It was a diverse group of women, each with unique experiences, but they all had one thing in common: they were Western women in Japan. I was touched by their willingness to share their experiences to help prepare and support others like them.

These interviews form the foundation of this book. With other research, interviews with specialists in certain fields, some of my own experiences, resource sections and useful Japanese phrases, I have tried to create a comprehensive guide for Western women in Japan.


Product Details

  • Paperback: 544 pages
  • Publisher: Alexandra Press (July 19, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 4990079108
  • ISBN-13: 978-4990079109
  • Product Dimensions: 8.1 x 5.9 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,532,275 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Caroline Pover grew up in the south-west of England, attended Exeter University, and moved to Tokyo in 1996, where she established her own publishing company. She has written columns for several publications, and six books, and published hundreds of magazines as well as several books by other authors. Since the 2011 earthquake she has been sharing her time between the UK and Japan, and is involved in various activities to support the recovery efforts on the Oshika-hanto peninsula.

Caroline has received awards for her contributions to the foreign women's community in Japan, her entrepreneurial skills, and her work with the school community in Japan. She has given hundreds of speeches throughout the UK and Japan, including a slightly saucy TED Talk on the importance of loving your body.

Caroline is a stroke survivor, having suffered multiple strokes in her thirties. She keeps a blog at

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on July 1, 2002
Format: Paperback
This is the only book I have seen addressing women's issues in Japan. It specifically deals with the challenges Western women face when they live in Japan. It is quite thorough and well-written. The author and her work are very accessible and I would highly recommend this reference to any female planning a relocation. The book is not written for casual vacationers, but can provide useful insights into daily living, if you are curious.
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Gloria Bauer Ishida on September 24, 2001
Format: Paperback
As a woman who arrived in Japan years ago, when there were next to no resources to help one settle into everyday life, I commend Caroline Pover for her almost monumental resource book for foreign women living in Japan. She covers almost every possible issue from job hunting and setting up one"s own business to dating to being a mother, and extremely important to anyone living in a foreign country --- how and where to get good health care --- and much more, listing a treasure of organizations, books, useful addresses and telephone numbers, and web pages. Included at the end of each chapter is a basic and useful Japanese vocabulary pertaining to the subject.
As a personal touch, a number of expatriate women involved in a variety of jobs tell their stories, sharing the frustrations and successes they have experienced in a country not always friendly to the working woman.
Because so much research was involved, a few references became out of date while the book went to press; it would have been helpful to have a loose page addition with corrections. Nevertheless, the book is invaluable for foreign women living in Japan and for any woman, married or single, who contemplates a move there.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Kim Binsted on September 24, 2001
Format: Paperback
Whether you're thinking of moving to Japan, or are already here, this book can help you deal with the day-to-day trials of being a stranger in a very strange land. It has both general info and stuff that's more likely to be of interest to women (childcare, finding a good English-speaking gynecologist, etc). All in all, a great resource for foreign women in Japan...
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 25, 2001
Format: Paperback
An excellent book which gives you a lot of information on aspects of daily life in Japan. And although it is aimed at women, it is totally relevant to men. I wish it had been available before I came here.
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