Japan’s Rent-a-Family Industry | The New Yorker    

written by Elif Batuman. added 10 months ago by @icyflame ARCHIVES

family kazoku japan rent-a-family    

In a sense, the idea of a rental partner, parent, or child is perhaps less strange than the idea that childcare and housework should be seen as the manifestations of an unpurchasable romantic love. Patriarchal capitalism has arguably had a vested interest in promoting the latter idea as a human universal: as the Marxist psychoanalyst Wilhelm Reich pointed out, with women providing free housework and caregiving, capitalists could pay men less. There were other iniquities, too. As Gilman observed, when caregiving becomes the exclusive, unpaid purview of wives and mothers, then people without families don’t have access to it: “only married people and their immediate relatives have any right to live in comfort and health.”

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