Japan's Quiet Transformation: Social Change and Civil Society in 21st Century Japan, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Japan's Quiet Transformation

Social Change and Civil Society in 21st Century Japan, 1st Edition

By Jeff Kingston


384 pages | 46 B/W Illus.

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pub: 2004-08-19
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The 1990s have been termed as 'Japan's lost decade' to describe how the phenomenal growth in the Japanese economy ground to a halt and the country was crippled by enormous and ongoing political, economic and social problems. In responding to these unprecedented difficulties, wide-ranging reforms have been adopted including NPO, information disclosure and judicial reform legislation. Controversially, this book argues that such reforms are creating a more robust civil society and demonstrate that Japan is far more dynamic than is generally recognized.


'Kingston has provided a well researched and also readable synthesis of developments in Japan since the collapse of the bubble economy in 1989….The fact that Kingston happens to be a rare example of an academician who can combine sound analysis with entertaining prose makes it possible to recommend this book to just about anyone interested in contemporary Japan.' - International Herald Tribune

Table of Contents

Part 1 1. The Lost Decade 2. Information Disclosure 3. Building Civil Society: NPOs and Judicial Reform 4. Rogues and Riches 5. Downsizing the Construction State Part 2 6. Bad Blood 7. Dignity Denied 8. Mad Cows and Ocean Cockroaches Part 3 9. Nationalism 10. Social Transformations: Gender, Family, Work and Demographic Trends

About the Author

Jeff Kingston is Professor of History and Director of Asian Studies at Temple University Japan, and has written over 200 book reviews for Japan Times.

About the Series

Asia's Transformations

The books in this series explore the political, social, economic and cultural consequences of Asia's twenty-first century transformations. The series emphasizes the tumultuous interplay of local, national, regional and global forces as Asia bids to become the hub of the world economy. While focusing on the contemporary, it also looks back to analyze the antecedents of Asia's contested rise. Asia's Transformations aims to address the needs of students and teachers.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
POLITICAL SCIENCE / Economic Conditions
POLITICAL SCIENCE / Public Policy / Economic Policy
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Ethnic Studies / General