Critical Thinking Session

Do you think Japanese people are discrimitive?

   It is often said that Japanese people are discriminative. The other day, I read a Korean lady's post that said she had been discriminated for 26 years since she came to Japan. She speaks Japanese and also is married to Japanese, but she still has a hard time getting the same level of opportunities Japanese people have. Not only this Korean lady, but I sometimes hear some Westerners say similar complaints about how closed Japanese socity is. While being top-ranked as a dreamland to move to, it seems that there are split views on the quality of life those foreigners can find in Japan.


    On the other hand, living as Japanese in Japan often is said to be as tough as living as a foreigner. Since Japan has been geographically isolated from other parts of the world, it has developed pretty much monocultural society. In general, Japanese people distinguish UCHI, inside, and SOTO, outside, and apply groupism to the insiders, while seeing outsiders exeptional beings. Those who are inside the group tend to believe that what's shared within the group is the only thing they should follow, and they start to form, what's so-called, a heard mentality. Going against it is seen as a selfish act, and peer pressure gets bigger as you stay inside the society. And some individuals would find it too overwhelming to deal with.


    If that's what those foreigners want to get, yes, Japanese people might be discriminative not in the context of racism but rather in the context of socialism. They won't let you in so easily as long as you have different values from theirs. However, it is often more advantageous to stay as an outsider to live freely in Japan, and that's what some Japanese people wish to have, indeed.


1. Do you think Japanese people are discriminative? Why do you think so?