Japan’s Supreme Court has ruled on Wednesday (December 16th) that a law forcing married couples to use the same surnames is constitutional.
Japan is one of the few countries that requires married couples to have the same surnames. The law was introduced initially during the Meiji era (1868-1912).
While it does not stipulate which surname to adopt, in practice, women take their husbands’ surnames in 96% of cases, which reflects Japan’s male-dominated society.
The court’s ruling could be seen as a setback for women’s rights in Japan, just as the Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, pushes for a greater role for women
in the workplace to boost economic growth.
The ruling also urged parliament to reach a conclusion on the same surname rule, and take necessary legislative measures.
★参考にした新聞：Guardian, BBC, Japan Today
a) 明治時代 b)大正時代 c) 戦後
a) 夫 b) 妻 c) どちらでも良い
last name, family nameともいいます。名前の方は、first name, given nameと言います。