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Harris, Merkel and Ardern: Japanese women ask what about us?

Country clings to 120-year-old code banning different names for married couples

U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris, right, kept her surname after marrying husband Doug Emhoff, left.   © Reuters

TOKYO -- The Japanese Supreme Court again upheld a law requiring married couples to have the same surname, dealing a blow to the many women hoping for a breakthrough.

The ruling follows a similar decision delivered in 2015. Though the concept of family and marriage changes with the times, the thinking at Japan’s top court remains unchanged from six years ago. We are being asked to live in a new era under a system devised 120 years ago.

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