Military is key to emerging democracy

Feb 10, 2013

Military is key to emerging democracy

After five decades under military rule, Myanmar faces many challenges in building a robust democracy. The election of Aung San Suu Kyi and 41 other members of the National League for Democracy (NLD) in parliamentary by-elections last April has stoked a degree of euphoria ...

Feb 3, 2013

Japan's medical system skewed toward men in treating depression

DEPRESSION IN JAPAN: Psychiatric Cures for a Society in Distress, by Junko Kitanaka. Princeton University Press, 2011, 264 pp., $29.95 (paperback) Twenty-first century Japan is in the throes of a depression epidemic. Until the late 1990s, mental depression was not widely diagnosed or treated ...

Revisiting Asia's past, present

| Dec 23, 2012

Revisiting Asia's past, present

“From the Ruins of Empire: The Revolt Against the West and the Remaking of Asia” (Allen Lane) by Pankaj Mishra. This is the story of the Asian intellectual’s response to Western imperialism. It is an intelligent and rewarding read that crisscrosses time and space, ...

The revenge of Asia against the West

Dec 16, 2012

The revenge of Asia against the West

FROM THE RUINS OF EMPIRE: The Revolt Against the West and the Remaking of Asia, by Pankaj Mishra. Allen Lane, 2012, 356 pp., £20 (hardcover) The story of Asia’s awakening and response to Western imperialism is well-trodden ground, but Pankaj Mishra masterfully retells this ...

Shedding light on problems with Japan's psychiatric care

Nov 25, 2012

Shedding light on problems with Japan's psychiatric care

MENTAL HEALTH CARE IN JAPAN, edited by Ruth Taplin and Sandra J. Lawman. Routledge, 2012, 148 pp., $155 (hardcover) This collection of seven chapters makes for grim reading because it details the miserable state of mental health care in Japan. One key problem is ...

Giving voice to the survivors of the unprecedented 3/11 disaster

Nov 11, 2012

Giving voice to the survivors of the unprecedented 3/11 disaster

STRONG IN THE RAIN: Surviving Japan’s Earthquake, Tsunami and Fukushima Nuclear Disaster, by Lucy Birmingham and David McNeill. Palgrave Macmillan, 2012, 256 pp., $27 (hardcover) This is a riveting story about Japan’s March 11 cataclysm told uncommonly well by two veteran Japan-based journalists who ...

Oct 14, 2012

Heterodox views enter mainstream

RETHINKING JAPANESE HISTORY, by Yoshihiko Amino, translated by Alan S. Christy. Center for Japanese Studies, University of Michigan, 2012. 317 pp., $20 (paper) It is a testimony to Yoshihiko Amino’s influential legacy that his once iconoclastic views regarding Japanese history have now become mainstream. ...