Mineko Iwasaki (岩崎 峰子, Iwasaki Mineko) also known as Mineko due to the book, along with certain inconsistencies and fallacies about Gion which were mentioned in Memoirs of a Geisha. Mineko Iwasaki, the greatest of the legendary Kyoto geisha girls, knew According to Kaoru Yoshimura, owner of a Gion tea house, she was “a. Eventually, in , Golden’s publisher settled with Iwasaki out of court for The main difference between Geisha of Gion and Memoirs of a Geisha is victimised protagonist in Memoirs of a Geisha, Mineko demonstrates her.

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She claims to have an acute memory but it’s a bit too much to swallow. It is wonderful to spend time with them.

The detail is extensive: There is a lot here about the Japanese culture and the pictures really help you place the descriptions. I have read a few books on Geisha’s and always found them interesting so when I saw this recommended on a forum I ordered it.

Mineko Iwasaki – Wikipedia

The biggest confusion present is the use of mizuage– instead of being about income, in Memoirs it follows the form of mizuage iwasqki is used for the high-end prostitutes and courtesans, where they are ceremoniously deflowered by the highest bidder as explained by Mineko. She claims to have slept only three hours a night for years on end.

The plaintiff asserted that Golden had agreed to protect her anonymity if she told him about her life as a geisha, due to the traditional code of silence about their clients.

I’m not saying that she shouldn’t be, but I felt I was being talked down to for a good portion of the story.

Geisha of Gion : Mineko Iwasaki :

Mineko leaves home, begins geisha training, finds a true passion for dance, and becomes the adopted heir apparent to a well known established geisha house. In stark contrast to the slightly weak, victimised protagonist in Memoirs of a Geisha, Mineko demonstrates her strength in this book by including stories of how she offended both Prince Charles and the Queen—on separate occasions!

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However that was not, in the end, the element which I found most intriguing. An odd book, by an odd person. Wouldn’t a normal parent, realising they are bigger than the child, just lift her out of there? In her autobiography, Iwasaki speculates that the profession may be doomed if the industry fails to adapt to changing economic and social circumstance.

Clearly she cannot deny the violence and neglect her father displayed towards his children but she is determined to believe that she had a special place in his heart.

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She claimed that she decided and conducted her life at 3 as though she were an adult. Iwasaki sued Golden for breach of contract and defamation of character in[5] which was settled out of court in The author said that Memoirs of a Geisha was a work of realistic fiction.

See all 60 reviews. Check out the top books of the year on our page Best Books of The two sections of pictures were very helpful to identify certain elements of the dress, as well as get a feel for the flow of her life.

One is left with the impression of an extremely sad little girl who, desperate for attention, love and a place in the world, latched on to her place in the okiya and became, quite simply, a spoiled brat. The text states that a Shamisen is played like a Viola Her father’s family had no money, but her mother was rich.

Her family and personal stories also didn’t ring true. She does talk about kimonos, hairstyles, ceremonial passages from one stage to another, but it’s all pretty superficial. I’m not faulting the author, but it took a lot of concentration to focus. A book I would certainly recommend to anyone who has ever looked at the stunning pictures of these women and just wondered.


Geisha of Gion : The True Story of Japan’s Foremost Geisha

Iwasaki was particularly offended by the novel’s portrayal of geiko engaging in ritualized prostitution. The geisha are presented as artists in every sense of the word – in how they dress, how they portray themselves to others, their artistic and musical abilities. But what really, really bugged me about this book is the author’s ridiculous arrogance. Being groomed from a young age to be a heiress must warp your personality somewhat, I’ll admit. After Memoirs was published, Iwasaki received criticism and even death threats for violating the traditional geisha code of silence.

I don’t know if this was the fault of the translation or Iwasaki herself. You might mineio surprised! View all 13 comments. But it’s a compelling effort, and especially valuable in a world where Memoirs of a Geisha is such a problematic and popular text.

Is this still done in Japan? Please try again later. There is not a lot of information out there, and I will read whatever I can get my hands on. One of these items ships sooner than the other. Autobiography of a Geisha. Oct 12, Elizabeth rated it it was amazing Shelves: I had hoped to make it four, but by the end of the book I was rolling my eyes here thee there at her constant “poor me” line. But these are minor quibbles. She does it brilliantly, and with panache.

This was a pretty good book, but it was a little dry, probably due to the translation. Iwasaki became a maiko apprentice geiko at age There was also something a little off with the description.