December 5, 2005

"Memoirs of a Geisha"

From my upcoming American Conservative review (subscribe here) of the expensive film adaptation of Arthur Golden's bestselling novel. I offer a theory on why the Japanese spend so much money on business entertaining.

American commerce couldn't function without the salesman personality: outgoing, brash, and self-assured. Yet, Japanese corporate life carries on nicely despite a shortage of Donald Trumps.

The Japanese were among the first to develop enterprises far larger than the family firm. To induce the comfort level they needed to strike deals with people who weren't relatives, the relatively shy, sensitive, and easily shamed Japanese evolved an elaborate mode of business entertaining lubricated by food, alcohol, and expert hostesses. At banquets, geisha provided both classy entertainment in the traditional arts and light flirtation, making grouchy old businessmen feel young and optimistic again.

My published articles are archived at -- Steve Sailer

No comments: