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Chapter Summary

This introductory chapter presents an overview of the key concepts discussed in this book. Looking at how freeter activism has emerged as the major form of social protest among young Japanese from the late 1980s until today is the main subject of the book. The author argues that Freeter activism played a crucial energising role in the resurgence of social movement activism in Japan today. A major argument of the book is that the role played by freeter activism today can only be understood by looking at the roots of the activism in earlier decades. To trace the vicissitudes of the development of freeter activism, the book uses three theoretical vantage points those of collective trauma, alternative space and empowerment. The book provides a brief historical background on two specific collective traumas that have been important in shaping freeter activism.

Keywords: collective trauma; freeter activism; Japanese; social movement



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