Unseen Japan

The Japan You Don't Learn About in Anime.

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Love locks in Enoshima

The Weight of Love: Why A Popular "Love Lock" Fence in Japan is Doomed

News   By Jay Andrew Allen  ·  June 28, 2019 • Tagged with love, society, public safety

An expression of love and devotion in Japan has turned into a public menace. Learn why a popular "love lock" fence in the country is being torn down.

Older couple standing on money

Japan's Predicted Pension Gap Puts Government on the Defensive

News   By Alyssa Pearl Fusek  ·  June 20, 2019 • Tagged with pension, economy, society, aging population

A government report telling citizens they'll need to save big to make it to 95 has Japan anxious - and Prime Minister Abe is scrambling to contain the fallout.

Yutabon (Nakamura Yutaka)

10-Year-Old School-Skipping "Revolutionary" Goes Viral in Japan

News   By Jay Andrew Allen  ·  June 17, 2019 • Tagged with youtube, youtuber, society, school, education, parenting

An Okinawan boy's anti-school rant continues to rack up hits - and criticism of both the boy and his parents.

Woman sitting in filthy room

After High-Profile Killings, Japan's Hikikomori Fear Being Stigmatized

News   By Jay Andrew Allen  ·  June 11, 2019 • Tagged with hikikomori, mental health, psychology, society, culture, aging population, elderly

Why two separate sets of killings have Japan's recluses fearing that what little space they have in society will be taken from them.

Incident on subway

Self-Defense for Japanese Women: Safety Pins or Cell Phones?

News   By Jay Andrew Allen  ·  May 28, 2019 • Tagged with women, women's rights, society, crime, sexual assault

Over half of Japanese women say they've been victims of groping, leading to a rise in recommended - and in some cases, controversial - countermeasures.

Woman reaching through water. Kowai!!!

Momo: The Horror Hoax Appropriated from Japanese Legend

Essay   By Krys Suzuki Krys Suzuki  ·  April 29, 2019 • Tagged with social media, hoax, urban legend, society, art, yokai

How a sculpture based on a Japanese horror legend became the mascot for a creepy Internet story - and how the artist reacted when he found out about it.

7-11 Convenience Store

Unseen Japan Kaiwa 4: An Inconvenient Conbini

Video   By Jay Andrew Allen  ·  April 27, 2019 • Tagged with economy, business, lifestyle, society

Why has the 24-7 Japanese convenience store suddenly become controversial? How critical are such stores to daily life in Japan? And why did Anthony Bourdain always head to a conbini when he landed in Japan?

Woman in scarf

Burakumin: Japan's Hounded "Untouchables"

Essay   By Alyssa Pearl Fusek  ·  April 01, 2019 • Tagged with equality, society, discrimination, equal rights

While Japan has no formal caste system today, one "underclass" still finds itself routinely hounded and persecuted.