| Jul 17, 2003

Manga attempt to evolve against multiple threats

by Janet Ashby

Manga and anime from Japan are increasingly popular overseas, with Hayao Miyazaki’s “Spirited Away” receiving an Academy Award earlier this year. In their birthplace, however, manga seem past their glory days when loyal readers eagerly awaited the next installment from their favorite authors, such ...

| Jun 19, 2003

Top-selling authors go abroad

by Janet Ashby

Once again, the Japanese tax office has issued its annual list of top taxpayers for the previous year. Not surprisingly, it reflects the continuing economic slump, with a contraction in the amounts paid. What’s more, six of the top 100 taxpayers are Wall Street ...

| Apr 24, 2003

Challenging English at 65

by Janet Ashby

April is traditionally the time of new beginnings in Japan, at school and at work. Novelist Sae Shuichi, however, makes it a practice to embark on a new project every five years. At 55, for example, he took up kendo. And at 65, as ...

| Mar 27, 2003

Libraries under attack

by Janet Ashby

Are public libraries stealing the livelihoods of Japanese authors? So say writers and publishers as the number of books borrowed climbs while sales of books and magazines steadily decline. The first salvo in this battle was fired by Bungei Shunju in December 2000, with ...