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Learning that Emerges in Times of Trouble: A Few Cases from Japan

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Chapter Summary

In March 2011, when Japan was hit with the triple disaster that was graphically reported around the world's media, and duly inspired books such as this one, this writer happened to be in the country, though thankfully at a safe distance from the worst effects. This chapter recounts some of the details of a couple of momentous events that have occurred during my forty-odd years of research in Japan, and explains how much new learning was acquired at these times. The events were not disasters of the order of the March 2011 occasion, but they were certainly disastrous for some of the people the author was working with, and threatening for others, and the reactions each time added new knowledge to his understanding of the country he had chosen for his research focus. The chapter then discusses the two cases in the context of more recent major disasters in Japan.

Keywords: earthquake; Japan; Tokyo; tsunami



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