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Japan Subculture Research Center

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  • The Johnny & Associates Scandal: A Silent Japanese Media Was An Accomplice Says Expert Panel

The Johnny & Associates Scandal: A Silent Japanese Media Was An Accomplice Says Expert Panel

On August 29, Japan witnessed the unfolding of one of its most controversial entertainment revelations. The scandal surrounding the late Johnny Kitagawa, former president of Johnny & Associates, who passed…

Lessons Learned From Encounters With Clickbait Journalists

In the yakuza world they say, “As soon as you get to the top, someone will try to kick you down.” The world of journalism is, sadly, surprisingly “If you’re…

What This Means (a short-story about love and marriage in Japan during the pandemic)

And then she would pretend to pout which was another cue for me to massage the back of her feet, and then we'd head off to the bedroom or just…

Tokyo Private Eye (東京探偵) the sequel to Tokyo Vice was published on March 28th 2023, with Marchialy (France). English version next year!

Clients say they want to know, but they don't They want you to tell them what they want to hear But that's not the job My job is to deliver…

Samurai play soccer and other fairy tales: Japan and the world cup

In the early naughts an older co-worker sidled up to me one afternoon in the company corridor and told me with a mix of swagger and sincerity that if I…

Recent threats against FOreign Correspondents’ Club of Japan (FCCJ) and the history of media intimidation

by Robert Whiting (reprinted with permission) TOKYO — Over a recent early weekend, there were a series of threatening calls made in English and Japanese to the Foreign Correspondents’ Club…

May the Force Be With You (May 4th) Zen Wisdom From Star Wars! The Dao of Jedi

May 4th has become an iconic day for Star Wars fans across the universe.  “May The 4th Be With You” becomes “May The Force Be With You” quite nicely.  (If…

A Farewell To Japan’s King of Toxic Masculinity: Shintaro Ishihara

Ishihara hated outspoken women and liberal men; he had no kind feelings for the US and refused to be enthralled or intimidated by western culture. Ishihara reserved his most acidic…

Driving In Winter With Haruki Murakami… and Why We Still Need Him

Murakami's story is part of a compilation titled Men Without Women, a fate which, in the Murakami scheme of things is akin to death by torture. Men cannot exist without…

My Brushes With the Yakuza – Reflections of Life in Akasaka, Tokyo

My first encounter with the ‘yakuza’ or the crooks and gangsters of Japan’s underworld, happened when I was 14 years old, on my way home from cram school. It was…