Toshie Kobayashi

| Apr 25, 2006

Toshie Kobayashi

Toshie Kobayashi, 76, has been working six days a week, since she was 14 years old. As a highly skilled typesetter, she made a good living until the 1980s, when digital systems replaced her and analog typesetting machines. At 54, she registered with a ...

Rei Torii Exhibition

Apr 20, 2006

Rei Torii Exhibition

Baijuan Teahouse in Setagaya Closes in 8 days “Albert Einstein and Niels Bohr debated,” says painter Rei Torii, “but I agree with both of them — their theories are all there in the ‘The Story of Hotsuma Tsutae.’ ” In 2005, Torii published his ...

Gouki Kojima

| Apr 11, 2006

Gouki Kojima

Gouki Kojima, 18, is a third-year high school student in Tokyo. Last year, he was one of the two elected leaders of the 800 teenagers who comprise the volunteer group Shibuya Wakamono Circle, established 10 years ago to organize social activities for adolescents. Their ...

Takao Tsue

| Mar 28, 2006

Takao Tsue

Takao Tsue, 80, is the Honorary Chief Priest of Osaka City’s Imamiya-Ebisu Shrine, famous for the Toka Ebisu festival held every January, which attracts over 1 million people over three days. According to legend, the shrine was established in AD 600 by Shotoku Taishi, ...

Minori Kitahara

| Mar 14, 2006

Minori Kitahara

Minori Kitahara, 35, is the owner of Love Piece Club, Japan’s first sex-toy shop owned by a woman and catering exclusively to women. She believes that women deserve their sexual fun and games and she has just the right toys for them. My kind ...

Masaru and Katsutoshi Arai

| Feb 28, 2006

Masaru and Katsutoshi Arai

Masaru Arai, 58, and his son, Katsutoshi, 28, from Tokyo’s Asakusa are carpenters from a long line of master craftsmen. Katsutoshi, who has three sisters, is the youngest child. The father and son love working together and always strive for perfection. Although their yearly ...

Nobuko Mitsumori

| Feb 14, 2006

Nobuko Mitsumori

Nobuko Mitsumori, 37, works with her mother in their small accounting office in Tokyo’s Chuo Ward. With one assistant and myriad clients, the three are always happily overworked. Nobuko studied classical literature and didn’t think that math was her strength, but thanks to her ...

Hisayo Takano

| Jan 24, 2006

Hisayo Takano

Hisayo Takano is the owner of Club Akasaka, a hostess bar in Tokyo that many of her customers call the best “clinic” they’ve ever known. It’s where they come to regain their strength. Others compare it to the Shoukasonjuku, because, just like at that ...

Kazuhiko Hachiya

| Jan 10, 2006

Kazuhiko Hachiya

Artist Kazuhiko Hachiya, 39, is president of PetWORKs, a small company with nine employees. According to him, they “do big things in a funny and cute way.” His company is behind the popular mail software PostPet, in which animated characters deliver the mail; the ...

Donald Keene

| Dec 27, 2005

Donald Keene

One of the greatest scholars of Japanese literature, 83-year-old Donald Keene has spent the past 52 years in Japan, with the exception of his time spent teaching at Columbia University in New York, where, in 1986, The Donald Keene Center of Japanese Culture was ...