Age concern

Asahi_Shimbun_first_issue

Front page of the first issue, 1879

One of our students last week, Asako Oikawa, is a journalist with The Asahi Shimbun, one of the most important newspapers in Japan with a circulation of roughly 8,000,000, the second highest in Japan. The name of the paper translates as the Morning Sun Newspaper, and historically it has left-leaning tendencies, not unlike the Guardian in Britain.

Asako, who was previously at OISE Boston, specialises in issues of social concern, undertaking investigative journalism as well as day-to-day reporting for the Yokohama office.

On Friday Stephen took Asako to a private dementia care home just outside Cambridge in Bottisham, where they were shown around the centre and Asako was able to interview Sarah, a senior nurse, about standards of care for the aged in the UK.

I spoke to Asako after the visit, and she told me she was surprised at the degree of freedom and independence afforded residents, who were encouraged to cook, to visit the village and so on, and who each had a separate bedroom (bedrooms in care homes in Japan, according to Asako, are typically shared).

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