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Kenya Hara: the future of design

Jan 4, 2014

Kenya Hara: the future of design

by Cameron Allan Mckean

Sitting at a plain white table in a meeting room high up on the 12th floor of a narrow building in central Tokyo, product designer Kenya Hara asks me to picture a shallow plate in my mind. “Now imagine a slightly deeper plate,” Hara ...

The most viewed life stories of 2013

Jan 1, 2014

The most viewed life stories of 2013

From burgers to ballerinas, LINE sending to gender bending, kawaii cute to Nadeshiko adorable, here are the life section stories that caught online readers’ eyes in 2013. As a gyaru might say, “Yababa!”

Santa Claus has many faces, races

Dec 24, 2013

Santa Claus has many faces, races

by Russell Contreras

In Atlanta, Georgia, children of many races share their Christmas wish lists with a black Santa Claus. In Houston, Texas, Santa dons a red zoot suit and dances to jazz as he hands out gifts in Mexican-American neighborhoods. In Indian Country, Native American Santas ...

HIV: 'The fire across the river'

Nov 30, 2013

HIV: 'The fire across the river'

by Simon Scott

When 44-year-old Tokyo resident Isao was struck down by chronic diarrhea in June earlier this year, AIDS was the furthest thought from his mind. “I just thought I had a regular illness,” said Isao, who asked for his surname to be withheld. However, the ...

Nov 16, 2013

Fifty years later, conspiracy theories live on

by Mark Schreiber

“Any concerted plan that placed Lee Harvey Oswald in the gunner’s seat,” wrote Norman Mailer in “Oswald’s Tale: An American Mystery,” “would have had to have been built on the calculation that he would miss.” Yet Mailer, whose research took him back to the ...

Oct 22, 2013

Apathy is the real enemy in NSA affair

by John Naughton

One of the most disturbing aspects of the public response to Edward Snowden’s revelations about the scale of governmental surveillance is how little public disquiet there appears to be about it. A recent YouGov poll, for example, asked respondents whether the British security services ...

Mike Mills looks at depression in Japan

Oct 22, 2013

Mike Mills looks at depression in Japan

by Kaori Shoji

Among all the many trips American film director Mike Mills has made to Japan since he first started coming here in the mid 1990s, one incident in particular has remained with him. “One time, I was having coffee with a friend,” he told The ...

Kanpai! Sake through the ages

Oct 12, 2013

Kanpai! Sake through the ages

by Michael Hoffman

"A civilization stands or falls by the degree to which drink has entered the lives of its people, and from that point of view Japan must rank very high among the civilizations of the world."

Camera artist casts new light on Jomon millennia

Sep 28, 2013

Camera artist casts new light on Jomon millennia

by Edan Corkill

The Jomon Period of Japanese history is so shrouded in the mists of time that any bid to fathom its secrets stretches even the usual bounds of prehistoric archeology. Yet as amateurs and experts alike have continued unearthing examples of Jomon pottery and stone ...