Japan: All the Hazards and Threats of

After their miracle, the Japanese fear "advanced nations' disease"

After their miracle, the Japanese fear "advanced nations' disease"

Outside the Ryoanji temple, the newest Japanese surfaces shine. The taxi drivers bustle, sweeping huge feather dusters over their cars, flicking specks from the bright metal. The ritual, a writer once remarked, makes them look like chambermaids in the first act of a French farce. But it is utterly Japanese, a set piece: the drivers handle their dusters like samurai. The scene is a sort of cartoon of the busy, fastidious superego that is supposed to preside in the Japanese...

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