Lafcadio Hearn: 'Japanese Thru and Tru'

Sep 20, 2014

Lafcadio Hearn: 'Japanese Thru and Tru'

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A small cage was opened at Lafcadio Hearn’s funeral, setting birds into the air, the soul of the deceased presumably taking flight with them. His coffin was draped in chrysanthemums and fragrant olive, adorned by a laurel wreath. Seven Buddhist priests read the sutras ...

Kodomo no Ie: home away from home

Sep 13, 2014

Kodomo no Ie: home away from home

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The sound of giggling fills a room at Kodomo no Ie, a children’s institution in northern Tokyo, as a group of half a dozen girls work on their homework while waiting for dinner to be served. It’s the same situation that is typically played ...

Waking up to child abuse

Sep 13, 2014

Waking up to child abuse

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With reported cases of child abuse topping 70,000 per annum for the first time in August, Masami Ito examines the nation's changing attitudes toward violence at home.

Dealing with addiction: Japan's drug problem

Aug 23, 2014

Dealing with addiction: Japan's drug problem

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Some kid shot up a dose again tonight Pushed back by his other self Even if you were to buy your dream You need self-control No one talks about hopes and dreams All that’s there is something better, something new, a better way The ...

Former drug addict relieved to be alive

Aug 23, 2014

Former drug addict relieved to be alive

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You won’t find an air conditioner in any inmate wings at Fuchu Prison, no matter how hot it is outside. And on this sweltering, cloudless day in August, it is certainly hot. Two members from Drug Addiction Rehabilitation Center (DARC) are preparing to hold ...

Comiket grows stronger each year

Aug 22, 2014

Comiket grows stronger each year

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Held twice a year and famous among otaku (fanboys and fangirls) the world over, Comiket, short for Comic Market, held its 86th event Aug. 15-17 at Tokyo Big Sight in Odaiba. With more than 550,000 people reportedly attending the event over the three days, ...

Aug 22, 2014

New fashion trends look to squeeze out skinny pants

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It shouldn’t be hard to kill skinny jeans. After all, women love and loathe them in equal measure. Three years ago, clothing merchants tried to snuff out the trend with flares. Now, chains — from mass market Gap Inc. to luxury-leaning Bloomingdale’s — are ...