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The Incredible Truth About Japan's Geishas

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Geisha (2007): Inside look at Japan's modern-day geishas For downloads and more information visit http://journeyman.tv/11238/short-films/geisha.html As 'Memoirs of a Geisha' goes on general release, we follow two Geisha apprentices on their training. It's an intriguing glimpse of what goes on behind the painted smiles. "It's a tougher world than I expected", confides Fakunami. The traditional skills of a Geisha take a lifetime to perfect. As Japan modernises rapidly, this way of life is under attack. Once there were more than 80,000 Geishas; now only a few thousand remain. ABC Australia - Ref. 1694 Journeyman Pictures is your independent source for the world's most powerful films, exploring the burning issues of today. We represent stories from the world's top producers, with brand new content coming in all the time. On our channel you'll find outstanding and controversial journalism covering any global subject you can imagine wanting to know about.
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Text Comments (1251)
shrewd pancake (1 month ago)
I'd love to have 1 as a wive they are well cute
ok. i like to know this. when the girls in full costume weighing 44 kgs..... how do they go to the toilet?
Leela Turanga (13 days ago)
They try very hard not to! They try to wait until work is over for the evening. They try not to drink too much, and they do not dine with their clients.
This documentary should be burned. So inaccurate.
atsa atsa (3 months ago)
search for JAPAN WAR CRIMES on youtube. good luck
hans mair (4 months ago)
But even the writer off G. said in the PAST WW2 was sex But not now ! For me Japanese Women the most KAWAI but very careful with sex ! As is my wife !
Bestline7 (4 months ago)
I love the grace, elegance and mystique of geisha. Western reporters need to stop portraying them as little more than glorified sex pets.
faroshscale (5 months ago)
GEISHA ARE NOT PROSTITUES. Fucking educate yourself properly before trying to educate others.
ibmor Joe (5 months ago)
If you selling pussy, attention, courtship. It is prostitution dumbasses
Daniel Castillo (5 months ago)
Atashi monoko (5 months ago)
What's the msc?
Jatin (5 months ago)
They only go with men if they want to no compulsion
Jeremy Rosa (5 months ago)
Aint trying to here it there hoetentainers.
MolotovDrago (6 months ago)
if selling off your virginity doesn't make you a prostitute, nothing does.
Daniel Paliwoda (6 months ago)
This is a horribly ill-informed documentary; Geisha were not and are not meant for sexual pleasure. They were always hired as entertainers of classical Japanese music and culture. Its easy for a Westerner to mistake them as prostitutes since there is no Western equivalent of Geisha, but making a documentary about them without doing the proper research is not fair to them or Japanese culture. Believing Geisha to sleep with their clients is like believing a Prima Ballerina to sleep with members of the audience after the show.
Princeshhh Marfil (8 months ago)
Am i the only one thinking if where are they now?
Aeon (10 months ago)
This documentary is so wrong, they basically telling confusing lies about the geisha world and what they truly stand for, giving them a bad reputation. This video was made a decade ago, saying the Geisha world was decaying but instead it has become more prominent within the last 10 years. Do not let yourself be fooled by the misleading content of this video and the obvious direction they are aiming for, do your own research people.
Sandy Torres (11 months ago)
Is cutting the girls from their families , and who pays for the training , that stinks to me.
pheenix Rivera (11 months ago)
The documentary is interesting but the picture quality is awwwful and where is the rest of it? It ends abruptly half way?
Mel Bee (11 months ago)
It's surprising that geishas have survived all the women's movements that have cropped up. I can see why the men enjoy it since the geisha sees to his every need. The women probably enjoy the feeling of being admired, getting dressed up and dancing, and certainly the conversation with all kinds of powerful men. As a woman, I don't really see anything wrong with it because it's a choice these women make for themselves. The days of women being forced into it are long gone. In a time where we often forget our history, it's nice to old customs still alive in Japan.
Leela Turanga (13 days ago)
Becoming a geiko - and especially the owner of a geisha house (okiya) was one of the only ways a woman could work and be independent in Japan, which was very traditional and conservative up until the Seventies. The private world of the geikos was women only. Only women were allowed in the house,; cooks/maids/maiko/geiko were all women. Their arts teachers (shamisen/dance/flute/singing) teachers were highly trained women. The owners of the teahouses where they entertain were women. Geikos could have children without marriage without being shamed for it. The daughters born to geiko, teahouse owners and geisha houses were the most successful as they were so very well connected in that world. So in a way, geikos were incredibly feminist in a world were men controlled everything including their wives and daughters.
Culture Vulture (1 year ago)
1:11 Disgusting old fuck.
justine mathers (1 year ago)
I guess its the japanese version of finishing school.refinement..manners etc
Hari Gurung (1 year ago)
In our country we call kumari as Geisha, we respect as a living goddness
Kaya F. (1 year ago)
If I lived in japan as a girl I wouldn’t want to be a geisha. I would want to train as a warrior and pick up a sword...
Juan Jones (1 year ago)
I respect their ways
Marry Christ (1 year ago)
Wait ...so they're just hookers...?!?..
Artūrs Paškēvičs (1 year ago)
Little promo in this theme, bear with me, its worth .:) https://www.etsy.com/listing/481292871/adorable-japanese-geisha-woman-with-hand?ref=shop_home_active_19
Buttcheeks Mcgee (1 year ago)
the art of Maiko is beautiful but those men are freaking creeps. They probably ask to take their virginity all the time.
Iris Coral Starlight (1 year ago)
What a load of crap. Get your facts and reality straight, Journeyman Pictures. >:/ The only incredible truth here, is how off-base you are in the topic.
Lord Sidious (1 year ago)
Those men should stop watching hentai
Nadine Gale (1 year ago)
To be completely honest, this still seems like a very westernized interpretation. Kind of a shame
wet milk (1 year ago)
Geishas weren't prostitutes you dumb shit
Tigerlily (1 year ago)
you are a virgin arent you? maiko are virgins, thats why they are wonderful i really hate this world, disguisting asses
mohammed kabir (1 year ago)
crack61616 (1 year ago)
hahaha!!!those old farts !!!!"are you virgins??"looks down on her between the legs and the girls thinks"you old pervert shit."this are exatctly these old japanese men who empty the underwearsniffing wending machines!!!
Fontomia (2 years ago)
"she paints her face to hide her tears" -memoirs of a Geisha
Lambchop2.0 (2 years ago)
This video seems to be confusing Geisha with Oiran. Geisha's are not sex workers, they are traditional entertainers. Oiran are the traditional sex workers. Don't let Western films about Japan like Memoirs of a Geisha confuse your ideas about Japan and its ancient culture coz lets be honest. When has Western culture ever painted non-european cultures in a good light?
Mythical Mew (2 years ago)
Sex was never part of the job of a Geisha, not even before WW2. The concept of a Maiko's virginity being sold to the higher bidder, the Mizuage, is an image created by Memoirs of a Geisha, written by a white man who unfortunately changed quite a lot of facts about the real world of the Geisha. I think his intention with this book wasn't to educate people in Western society, it seems more like he used this concept to create something new that would shock people, since people in Western society simply love stories that are shocking. It was explained by Mineko Iwasaki, a very successful Geisha in her generation, that the so called Mizuage ceremony is simpe a coming-of-age ceremony and sex was never involved. A Geisha was never forced to have sexual interaction with her patrons either, but it was also not uncommon for Geisha to end up getting married with their patrons, though this was their own decision. This whole video seems to be focusing on the "shocking" aspects of the Geisha world. It is true people used to be sold to the Okiya (Geisha houses), but it was usually because the parents of the child couldn't afford to take care of her and this was a good way to ensure the future of their daughter. The Okiya would pay for all their food, clothes, schooling and eventually their future. The Mizuage ceremony was however performed among courtesans and Tayuu. An Oiran is the highest ranking prostitute. But Geisha, although their facepaint is the same (the different is in their clothing, especially the obi, and hair) were never prostitutes. They're entertainers (and not just for men!), masters in the art of conversation and Japanese traditional arts. That being said, those business men were simply gross and I hate the fact they had to use that in this video, picturing a very gross image of these girls' jobs. Not all of their clients are like this. For anyone interested in reading more about Geisha, you should look up Mineko Iwasaki's autobiography "Geisha, A Life". It's written by herself and considering she was an actual Geisha it makes more sense to take her version of the story to be the truth.
GingerJoberton (2 years ago)
Filmed this documentary on a potato huh?
LittleMissMurder982 (2 years ago)
I just recently watched Memoirs of a Geisha, and always try to learn from movies as best as possible...because the truth/origins are always twisted. While the movie, in my opinion was well directed.... The lovely image of Geisha was soiled! Now everyone is going to be mislead 😾
Jan OtakuGames (2 years ago)
the narration of this video is so wrong in many levels. GEISHA ARE NOT DAMN PROSTITUTES. For someone who said to have studied Japan culture, the person is very misinformed.
a google user (2 years ago)
uhh, yeah, they pretty much are prostitutes. that's not wishful thinking lmao.
anti hero (2 years ago)
japanese sex appeal lmao Total misleading!!!!
Wayne Hodgetts (2 years ago)
Geisha's are history the Japanese appetite now is for School Girls they are all into paedophilia the police and government are all part of it.
Milo Savage (2 years ago)
It is better than killing people for oil
Cyrille Cocheteux (2 years ago)
Lot of liars in this vidéo. Sex was never a part of their job. In fact mostly they were living with other girls who were not geiko or meiko (geisha isn't correct) and were like prostitutes. Those girls were wearing their knot's dress in the front to take it down easily. But for geiko and meiko it was on the back of the dress.
Yasemin Bozdoğan (2 years ago)
ıyyyý 👎👎👎
no sir (2 years ago)
they are all trying to be white people. .honestly it looks discusting. . sickly and yack
Cotton Candy (2 years ago)
no sir um no they are not you dumb bitch you're trying to act smart and it's not working
Snicker Doodle (2 years ago)
no sir Far from it lmao.
Cali Méro (2 years ago)
The reputation of prostitute is because the Americans propaganda when US soldiers occuped Japan after WW2. Geisha is not a prostitute.
yjhm yhj (2 years ago)
Geisha weren't prostitutes but it is true that after the WW2 when American militaries came to take over Japan, they used geisha for sex.
WizzardOfPaws (2 years ago)
I find this documentary not very kind to Maiko and Geiko. All the talk about prostitution which is not true. They are not prostitutes. They are artists.
My Turn (2 years ago)
I love japan because they have a diverse and rich culture.
mocsha1 (2 years ago)
mocsha1 (2 years ago)
mocsha1 (2 years ago)
mocsha1 (2 years ago)
mocsha1 (2 years ago)
Light Unto Oneself (2 years ago)
Typically radical hetero-normative patriarchal norms and the sustenance of the same in the name of 'tradition' is abominable! It's a request to all the viewers to kindly search the plight of ancient 'deva dasis' of India and how this filthy patriarchal tradition of the male sex-mongers faced total extinction luckily. No more dusts (which are burden) of the centuries because to get out of those is freedom and humane. It is peculiar how some people try to mould such nasty traditions in palatable dishes explaining it in a different light to carry on such patriarchal burden covering and giving it a coat in the name of 'culture.' Please think on these things everyone!
Kaitlyn Cleary (2 years ago)
Video quality isn't that good
Samantha Leelooloo (2 years ago)
Western people never understand the culture in Asia .... They like to judge our culture in their fukin point of Western view.
Staar (2 years ago)
I want to be a porcelain doll for a day
Melody Headburn (2 years ago)
What a shame. This documentary makes me sick. What kind of nonsense is this ?
Tracy Kelly (2 years ago)
The narrator is wrong the geisha world back then was not about sex. The only time sex was involved was when the woman became a full geisha and her virginity was sold, and then when she took a Patron or Danna.
jjj romanof (2 years ago)
Tracy Kelly. so they are prostitutes...they sell there virginity to the highest bitter....so how is this not!!! prostitution...? lets not try to hide the truth!!! sometimes the truth hurts...and the truth is there prostitutes!!!! but with education to please a man!!!
we harrall (2 years ago)
That's a sad tradition imo. The men are creepy perverts that view those women as toys for their pleasure. Old men asking a woman if she's a virgin? Selling young girls to these men? Art is beautiful. Dehumanization isn't.
Ms. diego (2 years ago)
+ORORO. geisha did used to exchange their virginity for money. they don't practice that anymore.
Crypto 008 (2 years ago)
8 whole minutes just to tell us they are glorified & pricey hookers.
Have a magical day (2 years ago)
Try watching this 3am after watching the grudge 3, you get so paranoid and think that ugly bitch is crawling in the open door
Amanda Carter (2 years ago)
The make up is horrid
Frankie Tsang (2 years ago)
Disgusting.  6 year old girls sold off to become geishas?  Then at 14 "deflowered" by some old man!  Please people, stop raping children!
Pearl Holdeman (2 years ago)
That was in the early 1900's and even earlier, it was more accepted back then. It doesn't happen now, chill lol
TGRGMNG (3 years ago)
underage, raised to plz older men :-/
CGonzalezZ (3 years ago)
Japan culture is fascinating.
Kreme Chan (3 years ago)
Geishas ARE NOT prostitutes they are skilled entertainers. On the other hand, Oirans are the prostitutes.
Kyoumi masu (3 years ago)
Ugh, This is so fucking cringy and wrong. This needs to be deleted.
The-Lonely-Janitor 659 (3 years ago)
Wow. White people are surely the expect of other people's cultures.
Levi Chan (3 years ago)
Japanese ARE Chinese
Melody Headburn (2 years ago)
... No.
Levi Chan (3 years ago)
Japanese ARE Chinese
Geishas have nothing to offer western men. There are very few good-looking ones. They are expensive. The skills they know are of interest only to Japanese men., Now, the Korean equivalents of geishas are more interesting. They are younger, better-looking, and more available. They're closer to prostitutes than Geishas are. Geishas are like living museum pieces, interesting in a way, but not as women to most western men.
jcjcjcjcjcjcful (3 years ago)
3:48 that's familiar, what is it again?
mss burr (3 years ago)
maybe those men are so small they can't please a real grown women... Just sick...
Mimette Romney (3 years ago)
Liza Dalby is a Western woman that became a Geisha and wrote some wonderful books about the experience.
BookDragon (3 years ago)
perhaps the job of a gaisha is to entertain and serve customers by singing and dancing but when at age 13 they do start having sexual affairs with their customers, to call them prostitutes now might be offensive but in the past, they must have being valued , perhaps such things were not considered socially forbidden ...
Kira Stormcrow (3 years ago)
forget this this is not a good thing
miguel mora (3 years ago)
Marinda Lanham (3 years ago)
is there a video to follow this? I can't find it.
Jiszelle New (3 years ago)
I am obsessed with the way of the Geisha and admire them greatly. I hope this wonderful tradition never dies.
ROGUE X94 (3 years ago)
Geisha could be sold off by "Mother" to be de flowered by the highest bidder. Selling virginity is the same as prostituting is it not? Human Trafficking at its finest 😲
blah Newman (3 years ago)
Mariah Mejia (3 years ago)
So much white men blaming In the comments section.
Daniel B (3 years ago)
Ones name is Punani - crackup
Celena Tsukino (3 years ago)
This really makes maiko and geisha look like sluts and they are not, the tone of voice of the narrator just seems condescending to me.
M D (3 years ago)
wow, so sad.......undercover prostitutes
GA Perry (3 years ago)
I love that red lip color.
Leone Senpai (3 years ago)
A prostitute is a prostitute, regardless of what people say, they're prostitutes with a different name; end of story.
memekodd (3 years ago)
Well they are not and you are right a 'prostitute is a prostitute' right in that defining sentence.
Fashionably Malaysian (3 years ago)
Katy Kenicer (3 years ago)
Do they not have the common curtesy of privacy. How can anyone be so perverted?
Yandere Sadist (3 years ago)
Idk for u guys,but I personly think that geishas r just so beautiful <3
aworiyah Israel (3 years ago)
These people are truly a perverted and disgusting people... just gross
Robert Brozewicz (3 years ago)
First we can try to understand others and let them be. They cannot force us. We cannot force them. Why not allow people to be what they want. I understand that sometimes people want to force others .. other times they want to look at a flower to bloom even if it is not a flower but a mushroom. Sometimes it is a flower and we need to love it and enjoy its freedom to bloom. So we can bloom too.
BookDragon (3 years ago)
+Robert Brozewicz "...other times they want to look at a flower to bloom even if it is not a flower but a mushroom. Sometimes it is a flower and we need to love it and enjoy its freedom to bloom. So we can bloom too." hahahahhaahahahhhahahahhahahahah hahahahahhaha u killed me!
afrocanuck30 (3 years ago)
So pretty much,they are simply multi faceted hookers with etiquette,class and elegance added?? Wow,the Japanese has taken prostitution and turned it into an art form.
Jeciti Vaz (3 years ago)
+afrocanuck30 lol I ain't angry
afrocanuck30 (3 years ago)
+Jeciti Vaz Dude lighten up a lil bit ,it was just a joke.
Jeciti Vaz (3 years ago)
they don't have sex with their clients. weren't you paying attention?
Daquion Goodbeir (3 years ago)
the guys are creepy
Rafael Benitez (3 years ago)
Truth art detail ended.
Pinkrevenge101 (3 years ago)
Actually men were the first geisha
BookDragon (3 years ago)
+Pinkrevenge101 what? how? when?
RadioactiveCurse (3 years ago)
+Pinkrevenge101 Yep.

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