Japan

The case for bringing back feudalism

18 August 2018 9:00 am

Gstaad I need it like Boris needs a bleach job. Another birthday, that is. Birthdays tend to make your life…

Fried squid, stale sweat and sensuality in Ian Buruma’s Tokyo

12 May 2018 9:00 am

In 1975, the 24-year-old Ian Buruma (now an award-winning essayist and historian, and the editor of the New York Review…

A single mother hits rock bottom in Tokyo: Territory of Light reviewed

28 April 2018 9:00 am

Before her death two years ago, Yuko Tsushima was a powerful voice in Japanese literature; a strong candidate for the…

It was good but I preferred slurping my genitals: Monty the dog reviews Isle of Dogs

31 March 2018 9:00 am

The latest film from Wes Anderson is a doggy animation set in a fantasy Japan and as there was a…

The Plough and the Stars at the Lyric Hammersmith shows Sean O’Casey is one of the greats

31 March 2018 9:00 am

The Plough and the Stars by Sean O’Casey looks at the Irish nationalist movement during the events of Easter 1916.…

What I learned going naked on the green mountain

28 October 2017 9:00 am

‘I was last night sent officially to witness the execution by harakiri (self-immolation through disembowelling) of Taki Zensaburo… As the harakiri…

Shinzo Abe has called a snap election – and the rise of Japan's female version of Corbyn might explain why

30 September 2017 9:00 am

Is his rival Yuriko Koike behind the Japanese PM’s decision to call a snap election?

Okayama Castle, which was completed in 1597. Its black exterior has earned it the nickname ‘Crow Castle’

Towering Tokyo draws your gaze endlessly upwards

23 September 2017 9:00 am

Towering Tokyo draws your gaze endlessly upwards

A pile of mud-covered satchels is all that remains of 74 children’s lives

How the 2011 killer tsunami sent shock waves through Japan

26 August 2017 9:00 am

The loss of so many children’s lives at Okawa primary school in 2011 was entirely avoidable, says Nicholas Shakespeare

Mixed blessings: Japan’s eclectic attitude towards faith

15 July 2017 9:00 am

Japan’s eclectic attitude towards faith

Watch a sobbing landlord confess his capitalist crimes on BBC1

1 July 2017 9:00 am

It’s not unusual to see a pop concert on TV where teenage girls and a group of middle-aged men are…

‘Choshi in Soshu province’, woodblock print from A Thousand Pictures of the Sea, c.1833, by Hokusai

How Hokusai achieved immortality

27 May 2017 9:00 am

Hokusai wanted to paint everything, says Laura Freeman, and at 70 he was only just beginning

Japan thinks English is the future – whatever Jean-Claude Juncker says

13 May 2017 9:00 am

Whatever Mr Juncker says, Japan thinks English is the future

Silver Hut, 1984, by Toyo Ito

With no planning controls and owners craving the new, Japan is a Disneyland for architecture

8 April 2017 9:00 am

The house in which I lived in Tokyo was built by my landlady, a former geisha. It stood on a…

Dialogue so ham-fisted it makes you die inside: Ghost in the Shell reviewed

1 April 2017 9:00 am

Ghost in the Shell is the Hollywood live-action remake of the 1995 Japanese anime of the same name and it’s…

Party time... blossoms at Himeji Castle in Japan

Let’s cherish the cherry blossom: its fleeting beauty is like life itself

25 March 2017 9:00 am

In what I like to think of as The Spectator’s back garden — most people call it St James’s Park…

Weaker yen, stronger companies: Japan could be the trade of the decade

Japan’s long-depressed stock market could bring spectacular returns soon

4 March 2017 9:00 am

Jonathan Davis says Tokyo’s long-slumped stock market could produce spectacular returns in the next decade

The wonder of Japan

25 February 2017 9:00 am

From my chalet high up above the village, I look up at the immense, glistening mountain range of the Alps,…

Say a little prayer: Liam Neeson as Father Ferreira in ‘Silence’

So long and repetitive, I had a nap: Silence reviewed

7 January 2017 9:00 am

Silence is Martin Scorsese’s film about Jesuit priests in 17th-century Japan whose faith is sorely tested, just as your patience…

We are the robots: Bipedal Walker, built by David Buckley and the Shadow Robot Project Group, 1987–97

Will our love affair with robots land us in the Natural History Museum?

10 December 2016 9:00 am

Will our love affair with robots send us the way of the dinosaurs? Bryan Appleyard thinks it might

The Bomb, my film, and what really scares Japan today

22 October 2016 9:00 am

Tokyo is visual chaos everywhere, the antithesis of the Japanese interior. It is a multilevel jumble of overpasses, neon signs,…

Angela Carter: a seminal novelist who changed writing and the world

8 October 2016 9:00 am

Philip Hensher celebrates the breathtaking imagination — and dottiness — of the seminal writer Angela Carter and deeply mourns her early death

My prescription for a perfect Olympics

17 September 2016 9:00 am

I’m jittery and fragile but free of plaster and in the dojo, slowly turning lean and muscular. Never listen to…

Theresa May’s student crackdown will cost post-Brexit Britain dearly

10 September 2016 9:00 am

In the post-Brexit landscape whose shape was barely glimpsed in G20 discussions at Hangzhou, one thing is clear: soon we’ll…

Why negative interest rates are mad, bad – and dangerous

27 August 2016 9:00 am

Negative interest rates are too crazy to contemplate, right? But they may be just around the corner