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For centuries the role of women in Japan has been structured by traditional values. During the feudal period, the position of women sank extremely low. The intelligence and moral nature of women began to be questioned and their equal status with men diminished. Relegated solely to the home, their contact with the outside world was severely limited and education neglected. The characteristics of an ideal Japanese woman were obedience, subservience, humbleness etc. The Meiji restoration in 1868 sought changes in the political and economic system but wanted the social system to remain the same. Thus women were refused the right to vote and to hold political office. They were granted the right of education, which helped to widen their horizon somewhat. This ideology remained effective until World War-II.