Note from Editor: Students are reading Anne Allison’s book Precarious Japan, and sharing their thoughts on how their own future plans are impacted by the instability and insecurity that Allison describes.
Anonymous student post
I would like to tell you about my plan in the future. I have a small dream about work in the future, but it’s not clear now. I think I would like to get to work related to sports, because I love sports very much, especially baseball. Sports give me many collages and impressions. I can’t talk about my life without it. Additionally, I am a manager for a baseball club in my university, and this gives a sense of self-fulfillment. Therefore I support people who play sports as hard as they can, although I can’t express this in concrete terms. Also the Tokyo Olympic game will be held in 2020. It’s big news for Japan. I would like to take part in it in any way.
Next, I would like to have a good family. I would like to get married when I’m 26 years old, and to give birth to three babies. I would like to cope with both my work and housework very well. Japan has increased a nuclear family since postwar. It is linked to various problems in Japan. For instance, muenshakai, which causes kodokushi, hikikomori, and so on. My family lives with my grandmother, and my grandmother and my family help each other. I think it is my ideal. Also I will live with my parent or my husband’s parent in the future.
But I was sometimes anxious for Japan and future. As I read Precarious Japan, I remembered the past. When I was a junior high school student, I felt that I didn’t have an ibasho. It was very serious problem for me at that time. My best friend left the softball club I belonged to because she had a disagreement with our teammates. My role was to be an intermediary between her and the teammates. I heard from each of them about some abuses from my friend and teammates. It was so hard, also there was nothing I could do. Then I feel I don’t have ibasho. I was still a child mentally, so I didn’t understand how family is big and important for me. Even now I feel sometimes where my ibasho is. But I have friends with whom I can talk about my true feelings. They listen to my talk, also they were console a grieving me. The moment which I feel my ibasho is to be called by my name by anyone such as acquaintances. I think ibasho is unstable things especially for Japanese. Compare with foreigner, Japanese desire to make ibasho for themselves and dislike to be left alone. I think the reason why everyone have some anxiety for society.
In conclusion, I can’t expect my future and Japanese future, but that’s reason why I make plan and time. I don’t think I realize all of my plan, but I would like to do my best.