What if the Japanese ended up all having the same last name

According to a study carried out by a research center at Tohoku University, Japanese people could all have the same last name, namely Sato, by 2531. The result of a policy, implemented only in Japan, which does not allow married couples to have two different names.

Sato is already the most common surname in Japan, ahead of Suzuki. But according to a study carried out by a research center at Tohoku University and spotted by The Parisian
, it could even become the one and only in the country by 2531. In 500 years, the Japanese could indeed all have the same last name. This would follow a law that prohibits married couples from having two different names. A rule that only Japan applies worldwide.

Concretely, to reach such a conclusion, Hiroshi Yoshida, the director of the study, obtained the data available on a website which provides information on surnames in Japan and studied the evolution of the number of people with the name Sato. The economics professor at Tohoku University then calculated the proportion of the Japanese population with Sato as a last name, then estimated the growth rate from one year to the next.

“I don’t think it would be a good world to live in.”

Assuming that this rate does not vary, and if current legislation is not revised, half of the population will respond to the name Sato in 2446, then all of the Japanese in 2531. “If everyone becomes Sato , it may be necessary to call us by our first names or by numbers”, declared Hiroshi Yoshida, according to comments reported by the Japanese media The Mainichi
. And added: “I don’t think it would be a good world to live in.”

A change in the law could also suit the local population since, according to a study carried out in 2022, less than 4 in 10 Japanese will continue to share the same last name as their spouse, in the event that the current legislation is removed. . On March 8, on the occasion of International Women's Day, several feminist activists mobilized to demand the abolition of this law. 12 Japanese men and women even filed a complaint before the courts of Tokyo and Sapporo in order to obtain the right to have two distinct surnames once married.

In 2015, five complainants even went to the Supreme Court, claiming that this law was intended to discriminate against women. The courts then considered the complaint unfounded, arguing that a married couple could, according to the Constitution, adopt the surname of the wife and not the husband.

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