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22 June 2006 @ 11:50 pm
Fanfic Research  
I'm working on a fic right now and could really use a little help. I'm looking for any information concerning the practice of "mizuage" that was mentioned in Memoirs of a Geisha. Also, what was Ed's age before he transferred to Archer's command in the anime? Much appreciation!
kawaiisporkmage on June 23rd, 2006 05:18 am (UTC)
About Ed's age, I know nothing, but I can help you out about the mizuage part.

The name is derived from the word for water, "mizu". I fairly certain the "age" part implies movement, so "moving water" is a translation of sorts. The mizuage may refer to the time that a young geisha loses her virginity or possible the virginity itself, though I tend to think the latter is the case. When a geisha is ready to sell this, she offers boxes of small cakes that look a little like breasts to the men she wishes to bid on her. They then call her home and speak to her manager, placing bids during a certain amount of time. The bidding can go on for awhile, or may happen within a time limit (not sure about this part, however). When the winner has been determined, the geisha dresses up (I can research the certain hairstyles and what have you if you'd like me to) in a simple kimono with an easily untied sash to go an meet the highest bidder. Once there, they sleep together, and then she returns home wearing her inner kimono on the outside and her outer kimono on the inside (they're revered to prove she took them completely off in the presence of the high bidder). After mizuage, the geisha wears the hairstyle known as the ofuku rather than the split peach (with a piece of red silk visible between her hair, I'll find a picture if you ask)

If there's any more information you want, I'm glad to look it up for you. This sounds intriguing.... :D
Do you jive?: Yaydravenbellatrix on June 23rd, 2006 05:19 am (UTC)
Oh wow, this explains the movie a bit better, I wouldnt mind pics...
kawaiisporkmage on June 23rd, 2006 05:24 am (UTC)
Momoware (split peach) hairstyle (note that the silk would be red):

Ofuku hairstyle:

average geisha:

If you go to http://www.immortalgeisha.com/ and find the link to "gallery" at the top you can find a nice variety of pictures from the time period. :D
darasu_taisa on June 23rd, 2006 05:22 am (UTC)
*grab* i love you! LOL
This the most informative thing I've seen all night! I'm reading the book as well to get descriptions and things, but this is a bit more in depth. do you have aim or y!msg?
kawaiisporkmage on June 23rd, 2006 05:59 am (UTC)
Re: *grab* i love you! LOL
*is grabbed*

Haha, yeah, I have AIM. I'm [deleted because I'm paranoid] (I'll appear to be away, but I'm online). I'm not an expert, or anything, just a fan who rereads books way, way to many times has a fast internet connection. XD
Adziuadziu on June 23rd, 2006 12:55 pm (UTC)
Are you getting this information entirely from Memoirs of a Geisha? Because if you are, I suggest reading the interview I link to below.

Mizuage would probably be best translated as 'Pulled up out of the water'.
kawaiisporkmage on June 23rd, 2006 05:39 pm (UTC)
What link?

And yes, I am getting most of this out of what I remember from Memoirs. I don't claim to be an expert. Darasu_taisa also specifically mentioned the book, so that's why I'm giving him/her information from it, rather than from Wikipedia or some other source.
Adziuadziu on June 23rd, 2006 06:10 pm (UTC)
The link in my post below - an interview with the geisha Golden extensively interviewed as research for his book, who later sued him and wrote a book of her own strongly claiming that everything Golden wrote about the Mizuage was inaccurate for geisha.
kawaiisporkmage on June 23rd, 2006 06:11 pm (UTC)
Ah, I see it now. Well, like I said, I only gave information from the book, so it may be inaccurate.
darasu_taisa on June 23rd, 2006 07:09 pm (UTC)
Innacurate or not, the whole ritual of mizuage makes for a very interesting story, I think. I appreciate the different angles that everyone is providing on this topic.
xevisceraxxeviscerax on June 23rd, 2006 05:48 am (UTC)
As for Ed's age, he turned 16 at the end of the second season.
darasu_taisa on June 23rd, 2006 05:49 am (UTC)
Thank you!
Adziuadziu on June 23rd, 2006 12:53 pm (UTC)
Regarding Mizuage, according to Mineko Iwasaki, the ex-geisha who was extensively interviewed by and later sued Arthur Golden, it was all a fabrication on his part. Prostitutes sold their virginity; geisha never did.

Whether you believe this is simply trying to regain lost honour after Golden mentioned her name in his acknowledgements or whether you believe it is up to you, but one thing's for sure - if it's true, it really would change the way you think about geisha after reading Golden's book.
neekabeneekabe on June 23rd, 2006 01:59 pm (UTC)
I just finished another book, Geisha, A Life (by Mineko Iwasaki with Rande Brown) that also contradicts some of the activities and traditions shown in Memoirs of a Geisha. Their virginity is not sold, she was rather specific about that point ^_~

I want to say that Mizuage was also a term used to refer to the money made, but I can't quite find that section again and am wary of putting it out as fact ^_^
Adziuadziu on June 23rd, 2006 02:05 pm (UTC)
Yup, Mineko Iwasaki is the woman interviewed (about that very book) in the link I gave. She mentions the term referring to money made there, too.
neekabeneekabe on June 23rd, 2006 02:08 pm (UTC)
That's what I get for posting before I read your link ^_~