Author: Anne Allison

Publisher: Duke University Press

ISBN: 0822377241

Category: Social Science

Page: 256

View: 7573

In an era of irregular labor, nagging recession, nuclear contamination, and a shrinking population, Japan is facing precarious times. How the Japanese experience insecurity in their daily and social lives is the subject of Precarious Japan. Tacking between the structural conditions of socioeconomic life and the ways people are making do, or not, Anne Allison chronicles the loss of home affecting many Japanese, not only in the literal sense but also in the figurative sense of not belonging. Until the collapse of Japan's economic bubble in 1991, lifelong employment and a secure income were within reach of most Japanese men, enabling them to maintain their families in a comfortable middle-class lifestyle. Now, as fewer and fewer people are able to find full-time work, hope turns to hopelessness and security gives way to a pervasive unease. Yet some Japanese are getting by, partly by reconceiving notions of home, family, and togetherness.
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Author: Anne Allison

Publisher: Duke University Press

ISBN: 0822355620

Category: History

Page: 246

View: 4575

Precarious Japany reflects on how the Japanese are experiencing insecurity in the contemporary era of nagging recession, irregular labor, nuclear contamination, and a shrinking overall population with more and more elderly.
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Author: Anne Allison

Publisher: Duke University Press Books

ISBN: 9780822355489

Category: Social Science

Page: 256

View: 8848

In an era of irregular labor, nagging recession, nuclear contamination, and a shrinking population, Japan is facing precarious times. How the Japanese experience insecurity in their daily and social lives is the subject of Precarious Japan. Tacking between the structural conditions of socioeconomic life and the ways people are making do, or not, Anne Allison chronicles the loss of home affecting many Japanese, not only in the literal sense but also in the figurative sense of not belonging. Until the collapse of Japan's economic bubble in 1991, lifelong employment and a secure income were within reach of most Japanese men, enabling them to maintain their families in a comfortable middle-class lifestyle. Now, as fewer and fewer people are able to find full-time work, hope turns to hopelessness and security gives way to a pervasive unease. Yet some Japanese are getting by, partly by reconceiving notions of home, family, and togetherness.
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The Precarious Future

Author: Frank Baldwin,Anne Allison

Publisher: NYU Press

ISBN: 147983534X

Category: Political Science

Page: 384

View: 1271

On March 11, 2011, a 9.0 earthquake off Japan’s northeast coast triggered a tsunami that killed more than 20,000 people, displaced 600,000, and caused billions of dollars in damage as well as a nuclear meltdown of three reactors at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. Japan, the world’s third largest economy, was already grappling with recovery from both its own economic recession of the 1990s and the global recession following the US-driven financial crisis of 2008 when the disaster hit, changing its fortunes yet again. This small, populous Asian nation—once thought to be a contender for the role of the world’s number one power—now faces a world of uncertainty. Japan’s economy has shrunk, China has challenged its borders, and it faces perilous demographic adjustments from decreased fertility and an aging populace, with the country’s population expected to drop to less than 100 million by 2048. In Japan: The Precarious Future, a group of distinguished scholars of Japanese economics, politics, law, and society examine the various roads that might lie ahead. Will Japan face a continued erosion of global economic and political power, particularly as China’s outlook improves exponentially? Or will it find a way to protect its status as an important player in global affairs? Contributors explore issues such as national security, political leadership, manufacturing prowess, diplomacy, population decline, and gender equality in politics and the workforce, all in an effort to chart the possible futures for Japan. Both a roadmap for change and a look at how Japan arrived at its present situation, this collection of thought-provoking analyses will be essential for understanding the current landscape and future prospects of this world power.
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The Precarious Career of a Japanese Day Laborer

Author: Tom Gill, Meiji Gakuin University

Publisher: Lexington Books

ISBN: 1498511996

Category: History

Page: 158

View: 3520

This book is a one-man ethnography that seeks to understand life at the bottom of Japanese society through the personality of day laborer and street-philosopher Kimitsu Nishikawa. Through interviews with Kimitsu, Tom Gill analyzes life in the Yokohama slum district of Kotobuki—a district in which welfare has come to replace labor.
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Author: Tomiko Yoda,Harry Harootunian

Publisher: Duke University Press

ISBN: 9780822338130

Category: History

Page: 447

View: 8189

Scholars of history, anthropology, literature, and film explore the transformations in Japanese politics, culture, and society since Japans recession of the early 1990s.
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Days and Night's with Japan's Next Generation

Author: Karl Taro Greenfeld

Publisher: Harper Collins

ISBN: 0062013661

Category: Travel

Page: 304

View: 3333

This foray into the often violent subcultures of Japan dramatically debunks the Western perception of a seemingly controlled and orderly society.
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Japanese Toys and the Global Imagination

Author: Anne Allison

Publisher: Univ of California Press

ISBN: 0520245652

Category: History

Page: 332

View: 7461

Millennial Monsters explores the global popularity of Japanese consumer culture--including manga (comic books), anime (animation), video games, and toys--and questions the make-up of fantasies nand capitalism that have spurred the industry's growth.
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Mothers, Comics, and Censorship in Japan

Author: Anne Allison

Publisher: Univ of California Press

ISBN: 9780520923447

Category: Social Science

Page: 251

View: 5198

This provocative study of gender and sexuality in contemporary Japan investigates elements of Japanese popular culture including erotic comic books, stories of mother-son incest, lunchboxes—or obentos—that mothers ritualistically prepare for schoolchildren, and children's cartoons. Anne Allison brings recent feminist psychoanalytic and Marxist theory to bear on representations of sexuality, motherhood, and gender in these and other aspects of Japanese culture. Based on five years of fieldwork in a middle-class Tokyo neighborhood, this theoretically informed, accessible ethnographic study provides a provocative analysis of how sexuality, dominance, and desire are reproduced and enacted in late-capitalistic Japan.
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Author: Brett L. Walker

Publisher: University of Washington Press

ISBN: 0295989939

Category: Technology & Engineering

Page: 360

View: 3269

Many Japanese once revered the wolf as Oguchi no Magami, or Large-Mouthed Pure God, but as Japan began its modern transformation wolves lost their otherworldly status and became noxious animals that needed to be killed. By 1905 they had disappeared from the country. In this spirited and absorbing narrative, Brett Walker takes a deep look at the scientific, cultural, and environmental dimensions of wolf extinction in Japan and tracks changing attitudes toward nature through Japan's long history. Grain farmers once worshiped wolves at shrines and left food offerings near their dens, beseeching the elusive canine to protect their crops from the sharp hooves and voracious appetites of wild boars and deer. Talismans and charms adorned with images of wolves protected against fire, disease, and other calamities and brought fertility to agrarian communities and to couples hoping to have children. The Ainu people believed that they were born from the union of a wolflike creature and a goddess. In the eighteenth century, wolves were seen as rabid man-killers in many parts of Japan. Highly ritualized wolf hunts were instigated to cleanse the landscape of what many considered as demons. By the nineteenth century, however, the destruction of wolves had become decidedly unceremonious, as seen on the island of Hokkaido. Through poisoning, hired hunters, and a bounty system, one of the archipelago's largest carnivores was systematically erased. The story of wolf extinction exposes the underside of Japan's modernization. Certain wolf scientists still camp out in Japan to listen for any trace of the elusive canines. The quiet they experience reminds us of the profound silence that awaits all humanity when, as the Japanese priest Kenko taught almost seven centuries ago, we "look on fellow sentient creatures without feeling compassion."
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Music at the Edge of Circulation

Author: David Novak

Publisher: Duke University Press

ISBN: 082235392X

Category: Music

Page: 292

View: 3513

Drawing on more than a decade of research in Japan and the United States, David Novak traces the "cultural feedback" that generates and sustains Noise, an underground music genre combining distortion and electronic effects.
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The Fish Market at the Center of the World

Author: Theodore C. Bestor

Publisher: Univ of California Press

ISBN: 0520220242

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 411

View: 4781

Annotation A vivid and fascinating ethnography of the world's largest marketplace for fresh and frozen seafood, Tokyo's gigantic Tsukiji market, where $6 billion worth of fish trades hands each year.
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On the Possibility of Life in Capitalist Ruins

Author: Anna Lowenhaupt Tsing

Publisher: Princeton University Press

ISBN: 1400873541

Category: Social Science

Page: 352

View: 7927

Matsutake is the most valuable mushroom in the world—and a weed that grows in human-disturbed forests across the northern hemisphere. Through its ability to nurture trees, matsutake helps forests to grow in daunting places. It is also an edible delicacy in Japan, where it sometimes commands astronomical prices. In all its contradictions, matsutake offers insights into areas far beyond just mushrooms and addresses a crucial question: what manages to live in the ruins we have made? A tale of diversity within our damaged landscapes, The Mushroom at the End of the World follows one of the strangest commodity chains of our times to explore the unexpected corners of capitalism. Here, we witness the varied and peculiar worlds of matsutake commerce: the worlds of Japanese gourmets, capitalist traders, Hmong jungle fighters, industrial forests, Yi Chinese goat herders, Finnish nature guides, and more. These companions also lead us into fungal ecologies and forest histories to better understand the promise of cohabitation in a time of massive human destruction. By investigating one of the world's most sought-after fungi, The Mushroom at the End of the World presents an original examination into the relation between capitalist destruction and collaborative survival within multispecies landscapes, the prerequisite for continuing life on earth.
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Text, Context, and Critique

Author: Michele Mason,Helen Lee

Publisher: Stanford University Press

ISBN: 0804781591

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 320

View: 3534

By any measure, Japan's modern empire was formidable. The only major non-western colonial power in the 20th century, Japan controlled a vast area of Asia and numerous archipelagos in the Pacific Ocean. The massive extraction of resources and extensive cultural assimilation policies radically impacted the lives of millions of Asians and Micronesians, and the political, economic, and cultural ramifications of this era are still felt today. The Japanese empire lasted from 1869-1945. During this time, how was the Japanese imperial project understood, imagined, and lived? Reading Colonial Japan is a unique anthology that aims to deepen knowledge of Japanese colonialism(s) by providing an eclectic selection of translated Japanese primary sources and analytical essays that illuminate Japan's many and varied colonial projects. The primary documents highlight how central cultural production and dissemination were to the colonial effort, while accentuating the myriad ways colonialism permeated every facet of life. The variety of genres the explored includes legal documents, children's literature, cookbooks, serialized comics, and literary texts by well-known authors of the time. These cultural works, produced by a broad spectrum of "ordinary" Japanese citizens (a housewife in Manchuria, settlers in Korea, manga artists and fiction writers in mainland Japan, and so on), functioned effectively to reinforce the official policies that controlled and violated the lives of the colonized throughout Japan's empire. By making available and analyzing a wide-range of sources that represent "media" during the Japanese colonial period, Reading Colonial Japan draws attention to the powerful role that language and imagination played in producing the material realities of Japanese colonialism.
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Author: Leah F. Vosko,Martha MacDonald,Iain Campbell

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1135284709

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 296

View: 2516

Precarious employment presents a monumental challenge to the social, economic, and political stability of labour markets in industrialized societies and there is widespread consensus that its growth is contributing to a series of common social inequalities, especially along the lines of gender and citizenship. The editors argue that these inequalities are evident at the national level across industrialized countries, as well as at the regional level within federal societies, such as Canada, Germany, the United States, and Australia and in the European Union. This book brings together contributions addressing this issue which include case studies exploring the size, nature, and dynamics of precarious employment in different industrialized countries and chapters examining conceptual and methodological challenges in the study of precarious employment in comparative perspective. The collection aims to yield new ways of understanding, conceptualizing, measuring, and responding, via public policy and other means – such as new forms of union organization and community organizing at multiple scales – to the forces driving labour market insecurity.
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The Paradox of Harmony

Author: Keiko Hirata,Mark Warschauer

Publisher: Yale University Press

ISBN: 0300186576

Category: History

Page: 304

View: 8872

Following a crushing defeat in World War II, Japan rose like a phoenix from the literal ashes to become a model of modernity and success, for decades Asia’s premier economic giant. Yet it remains a nation hobbled by rigid gender roles, protectionist policies, and a defensive, inflexible corporate system that has helped bring about political and economic stagnation. The unique social cohesion that enabled Japan to cope with adversity and develop swiftly has also encouraged isolationism, given rise to an arrogant and inflexible bureaucracy, and prevented the country from addressing difficult issues. Its culture of hard work—in fact, overwork—is legendary, but a declining population and restrictions on opportunity threaten the nation’s future. Keiko Hirata and Mark Warschauer have combined thoroughly researched deep analysis with engaging anecdotal material in this enlightening portrait of modern-day Japan, creating an honest and accessible critique that addresses issues from the economy and politics to immigration, education, and the increasing alienation of Japanese youth.
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The Powers of Mourning and Violence

Author: Judith Butler

Publisher: Verso

ISBN: 9781844675449

Category: Political Science

Page: 168

View: 8086

An appraisal of post-September 11 America presents the U.S. government's decision to attack Afghanistan and Iraq as a response to loss and grief, arguing that the vulnerability being experienced in the western world is posing an opportunity to imagine a global political community without violence. Reprint.
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Author: Kristina Iwata-Weickgenannt,Roman Rosenbaum

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1317619102

Category: Social Science

Page: 224

View: 6197

Recent natural as well as man-made cataclysmic events have dramatically changed the status quo of contemporary Japanese society, and following the Asia-Pacific war’s never-ending ‘postwar’ period, Japan has been dramatically forced into a zeitgeist of saigo or ‘post-disaster.’ This radically new worldview has significantly altered the socio-political as well as literary perception of one of the world’s potential superpowers, and in this book the contributors closely examine how Japan’s new paradigm of precarious existence is expressed through a variety of pop-cultural as well as literary media. Addressing the transition from post-war to post-disaster literature, this book examines the rise of precarity consciousness in Japanese socio-cultural discourse. The chapters investigate the extent to which we can talk about the emergence of a new literary paradigm of precarity in the world of Japanese popular culture. Through careful examination of a variety of contemporary texts ranging from literature, manga, anime, television drama and film this study offers an interpretation of the many dissonant voices in Japanese society. The contributors also outline the related social issues in Japanese society and culture, providing a comprehensive overview of the global trends that link Japan with the rest of the world. Visions of Precarity in Japanese Popular Culture and Literature will be of great interest to students and scholars of contemporary Japan, Japanese culture and society, popular culture and social and cultural history.
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Author: Ikuo Kabashima,Gill Steel

Publisher: Cornell University Press

ISBN: 0801457637

Category: Political Science

Page: 184

View: 6562

Changing Politics in Japan is a fresh and insightful account of the profound changes that have shaken up the Japanese political system and transformed it almost beyond recognition in the last couple of decades. Ikuo Kabashima-a former professor who is now Governor of Kumamoto Prefecture-and Gill Steel outline the basic features of politics in postwar Japan in an accessible and engaging manner. They focus on the dynamic relationship between voters and elected or nonelected officials and describe the shifts that have occurred in how voters respond to or control political elites and how officials both respond to, and attempt to influence, voters. The authors return time and again to the theme of changes in representation and accountability. Kabashima and Steel set out to demolish the still prevalent myth that Japanese politics are a stagnant set of entrenched systems and interests that are fundamentally undemocratic. In its place, they reveal a lively and dynamic democracy, in which politicians and parties are increasingly listening to and responding to citizens' needs and interests and the media and other actors play a substantial role in keeping democratic accountability alive and healthy. Kabashima and Steel describe how all the political parties in Japan have adapted the ways in which they attempt to organize and channel votes and argue that contrary to many journalistic stereotypes the government is increasingly acting in the "the interests of citizens"-the median voter's preferences.
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Response and Recovery after Japan's 3/11

Author: Jeff Kingston

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1136343474

Category: Political Science

Page: 328

View: 9907

The March 2011 earthquake and tsunami in Japan plunged the country into a state of crisis. As the nation struggled to recover from a record breaking magnitude 9 earthquake and a tsunami that was as high as thirty-eight meters in some places, news trickled out that Fukushima had experienced meltdowns in three reactors. These tragic catastrophes claimed some 20,000 lives, initially displacing some 500,000 people and overwhelming Japan's formidable disaster preparedness. This book brings together the analysis and insights of a group of distinguished experts on Japan to examine what happened, how various institutions and actors responded and what lessons can be drawn from Japan’s disaster. The contributors, many of whom experienced the disaster first hand, assess the wide-ranging repercussions of this catastrophe and how it is already reshaping Japanese culture, politics, energy policy, and urban planning.
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