Harriet Sergeant

Is there a way to live without economic growth? 

David Pilling's Bending Adversity looks at Japan's lost decade and ageing population — the country's resilience may hold a key for the West

Japanese soldiers salute after filling a channel with coffins during a mass burial of tsunami victims Photo: AFP/Getty
During Japan’s lost decade in the 1990s I found myself handing out rice balls to Tokyo’s homeless on the banks of the Sumida river. The former salary men — it was always men — slept in cardboard boxes the size of coffins. I peered into one. Its owner had neatly arranged his last few possessions.

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