On Panels and Pages

Manga Realities at the Ayala Museum

The Japanese word “karoshi” does not directly translate: it means “death from overwork”. That there had to be a word for it attests to the kind of culture that thrives in Japan: anonymous armies of salarymen, prolific portfolios, and long commutes to and from the office, branching out from previous incarnations of warrior classes, farmers and fishermen, and female subservience. One can only imagine the potential for narrative, as well as recognize the contradictions of Japan’s damning shame society somehow supporting an economy of creative expression that is beyond free.

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