Japan’s continuing importance should not need restating, but its future prospects aren’t so clear. Serious questions need to be asked about the direction and policies being pursued by the government of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

An important new book, “Rethinking Japan: The Politics of Contested Nationalism,” by two senior British scholars of Japan discusses the main contentious issues. Their worrying conclusion is that “the new Japan that is emerging … will be more controlled, less democratic, less oriented toward peace, more internationally assertive, more inclined to confront neighboring countries, more unequal, more stressed, more concerned to flaunt national traditions reflecting the ethos of a militaristic past, more inward looking and less internationalist than the world became used to in the postwar years.”

In a time of both misinformation and too much information, quality journalism is more crucial than ever.
By subscribing, you can help us get the story right.