State Shinto Nightmares in Abe’s Japan

Army and Shinto






Like many foreigners observing the Moritomo Gakuken scandal play out, I am fascinated by the interplay between Shinto, nationalism, and government. There are questions that come with the scandal: Why is it a problem? Why shouldn’t the school use the Imperial Education Rescript? Why is the world watching so carefully? The problem is State Shinto. […]




HOW TO BE ICONIC: Onitsuka Tiger’s World Domination Strategy

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限界に挑む会社として継続的な経済成長を達成し、グローバルリーチを支えるための構造を整備するオニツカタイガー。世界征服する日は近い。This past year Onitsuka Tiger celebrated the 50th anniversary of the original Mexico 66, arguably the flagship and best-selling shoe from the storied Japanese brand — The company touts it as a fine footwear “discovered on the track, and later on, worn on the streets”







グローバルポップグループ「NOW UNITED」 ⽇本代表メンバーを! (応募締切2⽉23⽇)

If you're a young Japanese woman who's got talent, try your hand at joining this super global pop group. Apply by February 23rd.






新しいグローバルのポップグループ「NOW UNITED」は既存のグループとは異なり、踊りや歌だけ

ではなく、リアルタイムでグループの⾳楽や私⽣活にアクセスできるようになるのが⼀つの特徴です。

若者が如何に熱意のある演技ができるのかがオーディションのポイントとなります。「⽇本の⾊鮮や

かでスケールの⼤きい⾳楽と踊りの世界が⼤好きで、今回のグローバルグループにもその要素を取り

⼊れることがとても⼤切だと思いました。踊れて歌えるのはもちろんのこと、それ以上に世界を舞台

に⽇本を代表できるタレントを求めています。」とサイモン・フラーもコメントしております。







Ladies of Japan: Last chance to be “The New Spice girl!” or World Idol! Apply By February 23rd!

If you're a young Japanese woman who's got talent, try your hand at joining this super global pop group. Apply by February 23rd.






Simon Fuller is in the midst of putting together a global pop group, the first of its kind in the world, and he is looking for talented members to join from 11 countries around the world. He has prioritized Japan as a top priority, recognizing it as a market of exceptional talent and importance, and would like to conduct casting in Japan to find a member to join this group. Applicants should be 16-19 years of age (we have a little bit of flexibility to go 14-21), with dancing and singing skills, and not already signed to a management company/agency.







The Hardest Men In Town: Chronicles of Sin, Sex, Violence and 1975 classic gangster film THE YAKUZA

John was tattooed by Horiyoshi III for several years






In honour of Japan’s Celebration of Cinema Day, December 1st, we’ve reposted some reviews and articles on classic films. Some good, some bad, some epic.This was originally posted on March 10th 2011. (Wow, who would have guessed what would happen a day later.) It has been reposted to commemorate the passing of yakuza movie icon, Ken Takakura, on […]




The Realities and “Legal Slavery” of Japan’s Porn Industry

Executives of this firm were arrested for illegally dispatching women to work in pornographic films, allegedly coercing them to do so as well.






業界全体で知らなかっては済まされないほど若い女性や男性が無理やりポルノに出演させられている現状が我々などの支援団体は目の当たりにしている。ファッションモデル契約と聞いて契約に同意したのに、当日にいきなりポルノ出演と聞かされ台本を渡され、帰りたいやめたいと懇願しても数百万円の違約金を払えと脅され屈する、若干10代の若者たち。使い捨てにされ、その後の進学・就職や結婚にも大きな影響が出ている。







The 100 Hour Japanese Work-Week and One Woman Who Escaped






On the other hand, most Japanese – white collar or not, are well aware that clocking in over 100 hours of overtime a month is quite common, and so is not getting paid for that time. Dentsu was raided by Labor ministry investigators earlier this month, and they raked up evidence to show that workers were actually falsifying their overtime records to avoid having to bill the company and cause trouble.







Yakuza University: It’s a hard knock education

Higher education for many yakuza begins in jail.






 Le monde criminel possède souvent son propre langage et ses propres expressions. Les yakuza ne font pas exception à la règle. Par exemple, plutôt que de dire « aller en prison » (刑務所に行く : keimusho ni iku), ils diront « aller à l’université » (大学に行く : daigaku ni iku).







The Tokyo Vices Of The Great White Journalist: Christopher Johnson

The Troll. The Bully. Self-proclaimed journalist. Terrible nuisance.天の邪鬼






Oh yeah, I forgot to mention, I heard that your daughter gives really good head… and so does your son.
Hey, I wanted to hear if your children are getting a good sleep because… when you get fired, and I get fired, you’re going to have to put your kids out of international school and into Japanese school and I’ll be waiting for them. (Troll, 2007)







Hey, Baby? You’re fired & don’t come back. Maternity Harassment (MATAHARA) and The Working Woman in Japan

Fighting Against Maternity Harassment is a grass roots effort






According to Japanese Trade Union Confederation, matahara is an abbreviation of “maternity harassment.” The word refers to mental or physical harassment that some workingwomen go through when they announce to their colleagues that they’re pregnant or after they come back to the office from maternity leave. Some women come back to find themselves demoted or receiving a pay cut. In the worst-case scenario, some are even pressured to quit or fired. Harassment comes not only from men in the office but other women as well—sometimes out of irritation that their workload will increase, sometimes out of a kind of jealousy.