Provides a listing of articles on restorative justice developments in Japan. Articles appear in the order in which they were added to the site with the most recent appearing first.
- Cultural Conundrums: Sorry to have made you apologize
- from the article by Kate Elwood in Daily Yomiuri Online: In the late 1980s and early 1990s, comedians Mike Myers and Dana Carvey often appeared in the guise of two wacky yet lovable metal-loving loafers named Wayne and Garth. At the start of each "Wayne's World" sketch on NBC's Saturday Night Live, Garth greeted Wayne saying, "Party on, Wayne!" and Wayne replied, "Party on, Garth!" "Party on" soon became a popular catchphrase for glib salutations. I hadn't thought of Wayne's World or the revelry-advocating refrain for a long time, but recently a spontaneous adaptation of it--"Sorry on!"--popped into my head when thinking about a recent experience of someone I'll call Carey.
- Amish are a fascinating culture. My neighbors are Amish and they have simple lives in regards to technology, but they are very hard workers. And [...]
- For the love of the Amish: Japanese can’t get enough of the Plain-sect culture
- Takahashi, Yoshiko . Toward a Balancing Approach: The Use of Apology in Japanese Society
- Restorative justice as a concept, as well as a process in criminal justice systems has received increased attention over the last decade. A significant feature of restorative justice is âsatisfying justice.â? In Japan, there is a strong cultural commitment to include a restorative concept. Traditionally, Japanese society has used informal methods of dispute resolution that maintain harmony among members of the group. One such method is the use of apology. By introducing the concept of restorative justice into the system, people could find more fulfillment from the criminal justice system. This article examines a Japanese society in which an apology has a particularly important meaning. Studentsâ opinions about apologies in criminal cases were examined. It was found that more Japanese students than American students believed the case would not be fully resolved without an apology from the offender. It is concluded that Japan would take a more restorative approach with a use of a one-to-one apology. The effective use of apology in the criminal justice system could be useful not only in Japan but in other countries as well. In conclusion, apology is an often overlooked aspect of restorative justice. Apology can be an effective element in how victims respond to restorative justice effects. Abstract courtesy of the National Criminal Justice Reference Service, www.ncjrs.org.
- Ramseyer, J. Mark. John Haley and the American Discovery of Japanese Law.
- To answer the question, Haley focused on what he saw as the integrative, "restorative" potential of the Japanese criminal justice system. Police, prosecutors, and judges all pushed defendants to confess. They encouraged defendants to do what they could to compensate their victims. They urged a defendant's family to take responsibility for his behavior. They "actively involve[d] the community in the law enforcement process. Ultimately, argued Haley, they integrated criminals back into the social networks they had so forcefully rejected. (excerpt)
- Johnson, David T.. Crime and punishment in contemporary Japan.
- Although many people believe that Japanese crime rates have increased rapidly, they have not. Japan's homicide rates are the lowest in the world and are lower than at any time since World War II. An apparent increase in robbery rates results primarily from changes in police reporting practices. Except for bicycle theft, theft rates are the lowest in the industrialized world and lower than fifteen years ago. Nonetheless, Japan's penal policy has become more severe and less focused on rehabilitation. The contexts and causes of this get-tough shift include a greater sense of public insecurity, economic and social disruption, increased anxieties about foreigners, politicians' emphasis on law and order, and a series of police scandals and notorious crimes. It appears that the long-held "safety myth" about Japanese society is collapsing like a house of cards. (Japan Times, December 10, 2005) Since When Are Water and Safety in Japan No Longer Free? (Title of Motohiko Izawa's  book) (Authors Abstract).
- Miyazawa, Setsuo. "The politics of increasing punitiveness and the rising populism in Japanese criminal justice policy"
- The purpose of this article is (1) to establish that increasing punitiveness characterizes criminal justice policies in Japan and (2) to explain this trend in terms of the penal populism promoted by crime victims and supporting politicians. This article first examines newspaper articles to illuminate the increasingly punitive character of recent criminal justice policies in Japan in terms of both legislation and judicial decisions. The next section discusses the main contributing factors behind this trend and its public acceptance. The next two sections discuss two related issues: the public’s subjective sense of security, and the lack of a role for empirical criminologists in criminal justice policy making in Japan. The concluding section compares the Japanese and Anglo-American situations and argues that the same penal populism seen in Anglo- American countries is rapidly rising in Japan, and that public distrust of government has ironically increased the state’s investigative, prosecutorial, and sentencing powers in Japan. This article closes with the conjecture that police, prosecutors, and judges are unlikely to relinquish their increased power in the event that they gain the public’s trust and equally unlikely in the event of a change of the ruling party.
- Haley, John O. A Spiral of Success: Community Support Is Key to Restorative Justice in Japan
- The author states that no industrial democracy has been as successful as Japan in dealing with crime. Japanese authorities have learned from experience that offender correction and restoration to the community are essential elements of an approach that has proven to be effective in correcting socially deviant behavior. What has developed is a spiral of success, with law enforcement officials, community members, criminals, and victims working interdependently to prevent crime and reintegrate offenders back into the community.
- Japan and Restorative Practices
- The emphasis on apology and forgiveness in Japanese society has led many commentators, such as John O. Haley, to point to Japan as an example of how restorative justice can affect crime and society. Despite this prominence of apology and forgiveness in explaining lower crime rates in Japan, these mechanisms have remained informal and tend to be offender focused. Recent activities seek to change this reality.