Culture Note 3-Japanese Houses

Culture Note

Japanese Houses-日本の家

Traditionally, Japanese buildings were made of wood. Rooms were floored with tatami (rice-straw mats) and divided by fusuma or shoji (two types of sliding doors).

Modern Japanese houses have mainly Western-style rooms, and are equipped with Western-style toilets. However, most bathrooms retain traditional characteristics-they are separated from toilets and sinks, and have some space for washing one’s body outside the bathtub. Usually, all family members share the same bathtub water, so it is necessary to clean one’s body before getting into the bathtub.

Another traditional feature of Japanese homes is the genkan, a space inside the entrance where people remove their shoes.


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