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Special Issue: Vulnerable Populations Under COVID-19 in Japan (Table of Contents)

Edited by David H. Slater

September 15, 2020
Volume 18 | Issue 18 | Number 1
Article ID 5459


This is a collection of articles on vulnerable populations in Japan in the wake of the new coronavirus pandemic. Our goal is to capture the voices and situation of those who have been most directly affected by the virus and to document the conditions that made them vulnerable in the first place.

Thanks to all the authors who worked so quickly to get this research together in a timely fashion. In editing this volume, we received extensive guidance from Mark Selden and Jeff Kingston, invaluable editorial assistance from Laney Bahan, and production processing assistance from Subodhana Wijeyeratne and Yayoi Koizumi who shepherded the manuscripts from submission to publication with patience and precision.



1. David H. Slater - Vulnerable Populations Under COVID-19 in Japan: A Lull in the Storm

The Politics of Etiology 

2. Mark Bookman - The Coronavirus Crisis: Disability Politics and Activism in Contemporary Japan

3. David H. Slater and Sara Ikebe - Social Distancing from the Problem of Japanese Homelessness under Covid-19

4. David H. Slater and Rosa Barbaran - The Whole Block Goes Down: Refugees in Japan’s Detention Centers during the Pandemic



Containment and Isolation

5. Sarajean Rossitto - Isolated Together: Amplified Vulnerabilities in Japan’s Children’s Homes

6. Rei Ando - Domestic Violence and Japan’s COVID-19 Pandemic

Entrepreneurial Work During the Pandemic

7. Satsuki Uno and Robin O’Day - Japanese Freelance Workers Struggle during the COVID-19 Pandemic: Social Media, Critique, and Political Resistance

8. Valentina Giammaria - Covid-19 in Japan: A Nighttime Disease


Foreign Labor Under COVID-19

9. Masako Tanaka - Social Protection for Migrant Families in Japan Stretched Under COVID-19: The Case of Nepalese Women

10. Bảo Quyên Trần - Vietnamese Technical Trainees in Japan Voice Concerns amidst the COVID-19 Pandemic

11. Megha Wadhwa - In the Age of COVID 19 –The Indian Restaurants and the Indian Cooks in Japan

Resilience Through Controlling Environment

12. James Farrer - How are Tokyo’s Independent Restauranteurs Surviving the Pandemic?

13. Chika Kondo and Jack Lichten - Resilient Japanese Local Food Systems Thrive during COVID-19: Ten Groups, Ten Outcomes (十人十色 jyu-nin-to-iro)

14. Makiko Deguchi and Chie Matsumoto - Voices of Sanitation Workers in Japan amidst the COVID-19 Pandemic

This is the Table of Contents for The Special Issue: Vulnerable Populations Under COVID-19 in Japan, edited by David H. Slater.

Please also read our previous special Pandemic Asia on the impacts of COVID-19 in the larger Asia-Pacific region, edited by Jeff Kingston, delivered in Part 1 and 2.


David H. Slater is professor of cultural anthropology at Sophia University. He has worked on youth and labor, capitalism and urban space. Since 2011, he has been working on oral narrative, first of disaster and survival in Voices from Tohoku, then of mothers displaced from Fukushima, of youth activists and of homeless men in Tokyo. Currently, he is working on a related project, Voices from Japan, focusing on foreign refugees seeking asylum in Tokyo through the collection of oral narratives and support efforts through the Sophia Refugee Support Group.