Thursday, July 14, 2011

Nadeshiko Japan! It's the Japanese Women's Soccer Team in the World Cup Finals against Team USA

Here are the highlights of Japan's women's soccer team's 3-1 victory over Sweden in the semifinals of the World Cup:

By the way, Tom Byer only gets part of the meaning of "nadeshiko" down. Yes, the term refers to a beautiful flower, but it has 2 additional connotations that are quite significant. First, it refers back to old-fashioned notions of the ideal Japanese woman, an image the women's soccer team is refashioning with every game; second, it suggests a kind of mental and physical toughness inside a fragile-seeming beauty, which the women's team is transposing from its domestic and WW II-era contexts into the world of sports.

My girls aren't sure who to root for in the final--Nadeshiko Japan or Team USA! I'm just hoping for an exciting game--and some inspiration for Japanese women golfers as they head into the LPGA's European swing next week!

1 comment:

Mike said...

I know what you mean. I'm pulling for Team USA (what a comeback that was!) but it's hard to root against Japan. To have come through so much this year and still compete like this, it must be a tremendous morale boost for the whole country.

Regardless of what happens, Japan has clearly announced that it's a world-class team now.