Japan for 500 years the country of 'Satove'

2024-04-13 15:02:00, Kosova & Bota CNA

Japan for 500 years the country of 'Satove'

According to a study led by Hiroshi Yoshida, professor of economics at the University of Tokyo, if the current practice of forcing spouses to take the same surname after marriage continues, then by 2531 every Japanese person will have the surname 'Sato'

Initially, users of social networks thought that the news about this study was an April Fool's joke. But Professor Yoshida confirmed that the study was indeed carried out and aims to explain the possible effects of the current practice of surnames after marriage in Japanese society.

In his study, Yoshida calculated that from 2022 to 2023 the number of Japanese with the surname 'Sato' has increased by 10,083 times. If this figure remains constant and the surname law does not change after 500 years in Japan there will only be people with the surname 'Sato'.

Sato and Suzuki

Yoshida admitted that his predictions are based on guesswork, but said that with these numbers he aims to draw attention to the issue.

The study was commissioned by the Think Name Project and other organizations that want to legalize the possibility for couples to choose their own surname after marriage.

'Sato' is currently the most common surname in Japan. 1.5% of the population have the surname Sato, followed by those with the surname "Suzuki" which occupies the second place.

Couples in Japan can choose whether to keep the husband's or the wife's surname after marriage, but it is almost always the wife who changes her surname to the husband's.

Meanwhile, the government has allowed women to write their maiden name on their passports or driver's licenses along with their husband's, but Japan remains the only country in the world that requires married couples to use the same last name.

In Japanese culture, the family name is an important part of identity, because people in Japan usually do not address each other by first name but by last name./DW

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