History Today Major Activities Finances Fusae Ichikawa

History


The women's suffrage movement in Japan emerged during pre-war days,centering on the Women's Suffrage League, and voices were heard to build a "women's center" as a homebase for the movement. It was not until in 1946,however, that the plan was realized. The right to vote and be elected was conferred upon Japanese women in 1945, when the war ended. To commemorate this historic event, a modest wooden "women's center" was built in the following year, 1946, where the Fusen Kaikan (Women's Suffrage Center) now stands, thanks to the appeal of Fusae lchikawa, a leader of the women's suffrage movement.

Since then, the Women's Suffrage Center has acted as a locus for liberated Japanese women to engage in various activities and movements so as to make full use of their voting rights. Taking a politically neutral stand, these activities become instrumental in proposing and developing many projects on various scales.

Through the years, as the structure and its facilities deteriorated, the building was remodelled into an extended ferro-concrete one (826 square meters) in 1962 . From this time, it has been developing as a pioneering,distinctive private women's center, providing women with political education, research and publications, international exchanges and an information library.

Fusae lchikawa, founder of the Fusen Kaikan, died in 1981 at the age of 87. In 1983, the Fusen Kaikan was renewed, as a tribute to her life and activities, into extended space (80 square meters) with a memorial exhibition room. This was designed to inform later generations of the history of the women's suffrage movement in Japan and has received many domestic and foreign visitors.

The name of the organization, "Fusen Kaikan" was changed to "The Fusae lchikawa Memorial Association," but the building itself retains its former name of "Fusen Kaikan."