Next Station: Ikebukuro is a blog on Japanese contemporaneity. Entries will deal with "pop" and apparently light topics, trying to show the socio-economic actuality behind them.
Calls for removal of Class-A War Criminals from Yasukuni Shrine: conservative groups split over souls of the war dead
For decades, it has been the cause of scandal that still tears apart Tokyo from Beijing and Seoul. A place that few Japanese Prime Ministers have opted out of visiting. Yet today an influential conservative group finally came up with a good idea for a makeover of the notorious Yasukuni Shrine.
Shinzō Abe had high expectations on Yūko Obuchi. Elected before turning 40, Obuchi was the new face of the Japanese government, the one who, with that cheerful expression on her face, was set to announce the Cabinet’s plan to restart the nuclear plants.
Again this year, hardcore Haruki Murakami fans had to give up on their hopes. Their beloved writer, the best-seller author who published millions of copies translated in over 50 languages, has been passed over by someone else in the race for the world’s most prestigious literary award.
“Why on earth did you choose to stay in the countryside?” Of all the things people told me in Japan – compliments on my Japanese, as well as on my straight teeth – this was definitely one of the questions that struck me most during my years in Japan. Up until that moment, I wasn’t even aware that I was living in the countryside.