Spent the last few years neck deep in Sociology PhD coursework. Something had to give and so I put aside this blog for a time.
Where did I go?
I've gotten past my core courses these last two years and am now transitioning into my comprehensive reading phase of my degree at the University of Hawaii. Hopefully, I can get that sorted by the Spring 08 term. In the meantime, I'm furiously writing papers to submit for journal publication.
What about the blog?
The blogsphere has changed a great deal in the last two years. While I'm a regular reader of a great many blogs, I simply cannot hope to keep up with the 72 to 48 news cycle on the internet these days with my own blog. So I'm going to do my own thing. If you would like to read along on my ruminations and idle speculations, welcome and enjoy the ride.
Refocusing the blog's focus
Also, my blog's focus is a reflection of my academic research and that has not changed. It has expanded though, and I will be touching on various topics. Hikikomori are still an interest, but so are freeters, parasite singles. In fact the intersection of Japanese youth culture with a globalized Japan is all fair game.
I'll try not to write War and Peace every post and keep it succinct as possible, but I'm naturally verbose so it'll be a struggle.
What I would like to do is make my blog a spring board and resource for ideas on the topic of Japan's Lost Generation. I would like to keep it academic in nature, but I may dip into cultural observations to mix it up a bit.
It's been done
There are a few blogs out there on Hikikomori, Freeters, Japan's lost gen, etc, but many seem to be by journos and meant to provoke.
I'm going to try, try mind you, to be a bit different. I'd like to create an alternative discourse on the plight of these young people in Japan. Rather than just rely on second and third hand re-reportage on the topics, I think analysis of first person observations is more constructive.
Also, I'm seeing in my stratification research that while freeters have unique cultural features, it is not a unique condition for youth in advanced capitalist/ information and service based nations. There are NEET in the UK and twixters in the US that also are in a similar fix.
I welcome comments, in fact I highly encourage them, but I can and will edit them if they are off topic, flammable, or ads. However, for the time being, I have no illusions— my blog will most likely get little or no attention in the blogsphere, kind of like that kid who is picked last during gym class.
Be that as it may, I'd like my blog to be a forum of discussion for Japan's lost generation. In that vein I'll be taking submissions and posting them. I'll hash out some rules later but for now keep 'em under 500 words. Just email them to me with "lost gen" in the start of the topic line of your email.
Till next time—