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Nevin Thompson

Nevin Thompson is the Japan Editor for Global Voices. He is a translator, writer, and journalist, and has been connected to Japan for more than twenty years.

Nevin currently lives and works on an island off the West Coast of Canada, and spends about three months each year with his family in Tsuruga, a small city on the Japan Sea Coast, just north of Kyoto.

Profile photo by Jer Clarke.

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Latest posts by Nevin Thompson

15 December 2018

It’s official: 2018 in Japan was a ‘disaster’

Given Japan's year of natural catastrophes, the Japanese Kanji Proficiency Society thought that “disaster” was a suitable symbol for 2018.

9 December 2018

Japan Times backtracks on editorial policy redefining ‘comfort women’ and ‘forced labor’

"We can discuss nuance all day long, but at the end of the day, it was Japan that invaded Korea and used slave labor."

1 December 2018

Terrifying folk rituals from Japan added to UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage list

The demons enter homes to scare children until being placated with sake. In other variations of the ritual, the demons will chase children through the streets to scare them.

21 November 2018

Tokyo Immigration Bureau accidentally highlights the plight of refugees in Japan

To critics, the pinned tweet wasn't about graffiti at all, but was instead a reaction to criticism of how the immigration body treats refugees, undocumented workers and others in detention.

21 October 2018

Digging up the lost George Lucas Japanese 1980s TV commercials

Japanese Twitter has unearthed a series of 1980s Japanese TV commercials featuring George Lucas singing the praises of consumer electronics giant Panasonic.

17 October 2018

Nationwide far-right protests in Japan met with vigorous anti-racism opposition

The main organizing force behind the racist marches is Japan First Party, a political party founded in 2016 who is the direct successor of a much older anti-Korean hate group.

10 October 2018

Japanese television program turns migrant raids and deportations into entertainment

"With no deep insights, without even a shred of critical analysis and the stupidity of superficial entertainment, [this] is the worst television program on Japanese television today."

6 October 2018

Osaka cuts sister city ties with San Francisco over “comfort women” statue

The mayor of Osaka wrote a 10-page letter in English listing -- often in bolded, underlined text -- a litany of reasons for the breakup.

11 September 2018

Strongest typhoon to hit Japan in 25 years largely forgotten following massive earthquake

The media has struggled to cover the dizzying succession of disasters, leaving people feeling that some are eclipsing others in the public consciousness.

19 August 2018

Fans around the world celebrate as Akira turns 30

On July 16, 2018 netizens around the world marked the thirtieth anniversary of the release of Akira, a groundbreaking film that revolutionized animated movies forever.

8 August 2018

What happens when women report sexual assault in Japan?

"If this happens again I will feel more powerless knowing there's probably nothing I can do, and nothing the police will do."

26 July 2018

Go sightseeing in Japan, right on YouTube

What makes the videos useful for travelers or anyone interested in Japan is each video includes annotations in English, with time stamps, of what particular sightseeing spot is on screen.

14 July 2018

What's the story behind the samurai walking a cat, anyway?

The image depicting a shoeless samurai walking an armored cat pops up on social media from time to time.

12 July 2018

Questions swirl over Japanese government's response to deadly, unprecedented rains

"As unusual weather becomes the new normal, how are we to protect ourselves?"

1 July 2018

Was a Japanese cybersecurity expert murdered by an online troll?

When a previously anonymous internet celebrity in Japan revealed his true identity, his long-time troll was waiting to track him down.

20 June 2018

That time when the Japanese Ultraman franchise held a funeral for its monsters

What happens in Japan when you experience bad luck? A funeral may be one solution...

9 June 2018

Japan's Hirokazu Kore'eda wins big at Cannes. Here's a short selection of his films.

"I have never made a film to praise or to criticize something. That kind of filmmaking is nothing but propaganda."

21 May 2018

Making Japan's hot springs more friendly for LGBT folks

"This is the first time I've entered a communal bath in 13 years. It made me so happy!”

16 May 2018

Japanese high school girls wear badges warning would-be train gropers: ‘I'm not going to take it!

"We want the idea that 'you must have been doing something to attract a chikan' to stop!"

7 May 2018

Tweeting out Japan's idiosyncratic folk customs

Fish heads, jumping frogs and conjugal foxes: one Twitter account takes a look at arcane folk traditions from every corner of Japan.

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