The post-Cold War era has been difficult for Japan. A country once heralded for evolving a superior form of capitalism and seemingly ready to surpass the United States as the world’s largest economy lost its way in the early 1990s and has never regained its footing. The bursting of the bubble in 1991 ushered in a period of political and economic uncertainty that has lasted for over two decades. There were hopes that the triple catastrophe of March 11, 2011—a massive earthquake, tsunami, and accident at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant—would break Japan out of its torpor and spur the country to embrace change that would restart the growth and restore the optimism of the go-go years. But several years later, Japan is still waiting for needed transformation.
In his book Peak Japan, Brad Glosserman concludes that the failure of those tragic events to spur genuine reform provides important insights in Japan’s political system and Japanese society. He explains why Japan has not and will not be able to keep pace with a rapidly changing world, concluding that Japanese horizons are shrinking and that the Japanese public has given up the bold ambitions of previous generations and cannot sustain those of its current leadership. These conclusions have compelling implications for Japan and its partners.
Brad Glosserman is deputy director of and visiting professor at the Tama University Center for Rule Making Strategies in Japan, and a senior advisor at Pacific Forum International, a Honolulu-based think tank; he previously served there as executive director for 16 years. He was a member of The Japan Times editorial board from 1991 to 2001 and continues to serve as a contributing editor there. He is the co-author, with Scott Snyder, of The Japan-South Korea Identity Clash (Columbia University Press, 2015). Glosserman has a J.D. from George Washington University, an M.A. from Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) and a B.A. from Reed College.
The library committee is offering a cocktail party - "Meet the Author - starting at 6:15 pm, followed by a set dinner with one drink at 6:40 pm (Menu: TBD). Drinks can be ordered on a cash basis from the bar in the room. Book Break charges are 3,000 yen / 4,000 yen (members/non-members) per person. The member price is applicable to members’ guests.
To FCCJ members: Sign up now at the reception desk (03-3211-3161) or on the FCCJ website. To help us plan proper seating and food preparation, please reserve in advance, preferably by noon of the day of the event. Those without reservations will be turned away once available seats are filled. Reservations cancelled less than 72 hours in advance will be charged in full.
(The talk will be in English)