NaginatasAreFeminine Naginatas Are Feminine YKTTW Discussion

Naginatas Are Feminine
In Japanese works, naginatas are feminine weapons.
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(permanent link) added: 2013-04-23 13:25:29 sponsor: Larkmarn (last reply: 2013-05-06 12:18:52)

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A naginata is a Japanese Blade on a Stick similar to a glaive, characterized by a long, curved blade with a handguard. In Japanese works especially, naginatas are a common weapon for a female close-range fighter. In works that don't stress the relatively subtle difference between weapons, it may be generalized to simply "spear" rather than a naginata.

In practical terms, a pole weapon makes sense for a woman as its longer reach compensates for the woman's presumed shorter stature. Additionally it is effective since weight and strength are less important at a distance.

This has its roots in Japanese history. After the naginatas fell out of use by soldiers and samurai on the battlefield, they found a place as a symbol of status for samurai's wives. While advancements in firearms led to the weapon not being as useful on the battlefield, a noblewoman was still expected to be able to defend her home with it while her husband was at war.

Often a sign of a Lady of War. Subtrope to Weapon of Choice.


Anime and Manga

Comic Books
  • Y: The Last Man includes a rather ridiculous naginata duel in its Japan arc. "Ridiculous" in the sense that the Japanese attacker shows up Dual Wielding two naginatas, which gives the Action Girl defender a chance to swipe one and face off against her.

  • A western fantasy example in Tamora Pierce's Tortall books, specifically the Protector of the Small books. Keladry is trained in them, and her mother once helped hold off a pirate invasion with one. They're specifically mentioned as a weapon woman train in the Yamani isles, which are based on Japan.
  • In City of Ashes the second book in The Mortal Instruments series, Isabelle walks in with her trademark whip and a naginata. When Alec asks if the naginata is for him, she tells him to get his own weapon, promptly giving it to their mother.

Tabletop Games
  • Dungeons & Dragons supplement Oriental Adventures (1985). The description of the naginata said it "is often the preferred weapon of women."

  • Jinx the Japanese female ninja in G.I. Joe: almost all toy versions of the character include a dual bladed naginata as her primary weapon. Strangely, she is rarely seen using one in most media appearances.

Video Games

Real Life
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