Japan’s Pakuchi (Coriander) Craze is Just Crazy! But Also Crazy Delicious!

Pakuchi or ‘パクチー’ is derived from a Thai sounding word ‘Pakchee’ meaning coriander. It is an herb seen in many Thai dishes, either sprinkled on top or put in the soup. When I first moved to the Tokyo vicinity in 2011, it was actually the first time I saw pakuchi sold in supermarkets and even spelled with a Thai sound. I was very surprised to see the Japanese knew of the existence of this little herb we find so cheaply anywhere in Thailand.It is hard to pick a favorite but mine would probably be pakuchi roots tempura, pakuchi chichimi, and pakuchi cheesecake. What makes it good is how pakuchi has a faintly sweet taste with a lovely smell. Who would have imagined it to be this tasty.

Another tragic case of death from overwork (過労死) highlights a culture of labor abuse. Reform is needed.

The father of two children, the karoshi victim, was hired as an engineer working at the company’s plant in his hometown of Oshu in 1989. After being assigned to sales manager’s position, his daily tasks included sending out invoices and promoting the company’s supplies to potential customers, making several business trips a month. In addition to those tasks, he had to assess the work of his team members to determine their bonuses. He was also asked to organize company sponsored softball games and annual end-of-the-year parties. His workload began to gradually increase and the records his family members were able to collect show he continuously worked 60 to 80 hours of overtime a month since 2002. His son recalls that since he always left home at 7:00am and came home very late at night, sometimes later than 11:00pm. They were able to dine with him just once a week, on Sunday nights.

Even the worker himself became aware of being dangerously overworked. He once told his wife, “I’m working way too much so that if something happens to me, don’t hesitate to sue the company.”

Paternity Harassment Press Conference At (Labor Ministry/厚労省記者クラブ) today at 3PM

Paternity Harassment Press Conference At (Labor Ministry/厚労省記者クラブ) today at 3PM

Japan’s PSA: “Don’t Work Yourself To Death So You Can Keep Working!”

Well, just when it seemed that Japan Inc. just didn’t care, the Ministry Of Health, Labor, and Welfare, took decisive action. They declared November to be, “Special Month Of Raising Awareness Preventing People From Working to Death And Other Things” and have adorned the stations with these powerful (not) eye-catching (not) posters. But the unintentional irony is the sub-text of the poster which loosely translates all together as, “Don’t work yourself to death so we can have a society where you can keep working!”.

Have you been a victim of sexual assault in Japan? How did police respond?

Have you been a victim of sexual assault in Japan? How did police respond? 日本で性犯罪被害に遭って警察に相談した結果?#詩織 #shiori #私も #MeToo RT please. — Jake Adelstein/中本哲史 (@jakeadelstein) October 29, 2017

Rape in Japan is a crime but justice is rarely served. A Non-Arrest & Shiori Ito’s Full Statement

Rape in Japan could happen to you, your family, your friends – it could happen to anyone. If we remain silent and ignore this opportunity to change the legal and investigation systems, each and every one of us will be approving these crimes to continue.

Amina Du Jean, Japan’s first black idol, is back with a song “Seppuku”?!

Our favorite idol (アイドル) in Japan, Amina Du Jean, has new EP out. It’s called “Seppuku”.
Ritual disembowling (hara-kiri) has never been cuter or had a better melody. Mishima would have danced to this.
For more on the song and Amina Du Jean, checkout out her Bandcamp website.

Is Japan’s Press Partially Responsible For The Decline Of Press Freedom?

Government officials have shied away from holding press conferences in the Foreign Correspondents Club of Japan (FCCJ) to avoid being faced with tough questions. Instead, they prefer to have private meetings with the media whom they favor and speak everything off the record.”

Happy New Year 2017! 謹賀新年

Gentle readers, Thank you for spending another year with JSRC (Japan Subculture Research Center). This year we’ve posted some great articles, some useful reference materials, and next year we hope to publish more. We will be back in mid-January of 2017, with a new sense of purpose, new material, and hopefully more frequent updates. As […]

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

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。