Self esteem and Memoirs of a Geisha

The other day, I was rewatching the film Memoirs of a Geisha. Now, I was not particularly fond of the film in the beginning, although I must admit that the sequences of the film were beautiful because they took their time to tell the story. However, as Sayuri becomes more and more involved in becoming a geisha, I noted one thing in particular. What bothered me about the film was that Sayuri’s teacher was encouraging her to sell her mizuage. I found it particularly sad that she wasn’t really allowed to pick who she wanted to lose her virginity with. I am not very fond of the idea of losing your virginity before marriage, but the fact that she sold it makes me wonder how she did not question how degrading this act was. I think that a woman in her own right should have the option to choose what she did with whom, and be happy. As a strong minded individual like myself would say, “Do you not feel lowered in standard by doing this”? Maybe I’m just a little nuts. I think that the world should have choices– it is these choices that carry us on in life and we LEARN from these choices. Hatsumomo’s character, although despicable, did what she wanted and did not care. Obviously, she was in trouble often and often did not drive Sayuri in the right direction, but she did seem to have a rebellious nature about her that one can consider admirable. She is told throughout the film that a geisha is not allowed to love, but Hatsumomo seeks it anyway. In the film, Sayuri is nearly raped, and Hatsumomo says “Why take a plum when you have already taken  bite.” In regards to the bidding of course,. This then leads Sayuri’s mizuage being sold for 1`5,000 yen. The highest paid ever. For me, this lowers the self esteem indefinitely. Igt’s almost like being a prostitute in my opinion. This is through your own will, but it would make me feel like I have proven nothing. A woman has to protect herself unless she wishes to do these things with a man. Sayuri, I feel like, didn’t have this choice in her lifetime. To have your virginity taken away by someone you di not care for is like saying I love you to your  friend who means nothing to you. It’s a meaningless situation. This takes away from the dignity and soul of a woman, and in the end she is the one who is to blame, not the man. In this point of time, a woman does not really know where she should stand. She needs to be sexy, pretty, funny, nice, cool, yet edgy, interesting, smart and cunning. A woman’s self esteem should be high, and I feel like this cannot be done with this generation. It is simply too much. Today for example, I went off to South Coast Plaza and I felt like the fattest person there. I felt like I could be someone’s basketball for a day. Ultimately, a woman should not be taken advantage of nor should she ALLOW a person to take advantage of her. Women have their strengths, and weaknesses. One of them being.. well.. pleasing the male enigma. Men can sometimes be the most wonderful beings if we give them something to respect. However, if you’re going to act like.. well, you know.. how should you expect to have dignity and respect from a man? A woman pleases the male enigma by dressing like this, but in the end, who will win? They did a questionnaire once, asking random males the following questions: “Would you date a slut?” “Yes.” “Would you have sex with a slut?” “Yes.” “Would you MARRY one?” “No.” In the end, it proves the very question that women ask themselves everyday about men : What kind of woman should I be? Well, there’s your answer. An HONORABLE one. A RESPECTABLE one.  When one looks at everyday billboards, you cannot help but compare yourself to that person. You don’t have that perfect skin, the blue eyes, the most amazing body, whatever. A woman can only have self confidence within herself — and this is all within her. What she shows is what she will show to other people and what others will believe about her.

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