Life Studies Blog (Old)

May 25, 2005

Commentary on Painless Civilization (by M)

The book, Painless Civilization was published in 2003, and lots of comments and criticisms appeared in Japan since then. The Korean translation was published this year. I don't know how it has been accepted there, however, several book reviews appeared in Korean newspapers, and we can see some comments on Korean blogs. I translated Preface and the first section of Chapter 1 a year ago. I couldn't continue translating because I had to write another book in Japanese last year, but I think I have to start translation again this summer.

By the way, Haruka Miki, a former college student at Hitotsubashi University (she was there until this spring), published her BA thesis on the web, and in her paper she discussed "painless civilization" and capitalism from the perspective of risk management. This is probably the first serious commentary on Painless Civilization written in English. Please see
her page for details. I don't know her personally, but it is good news that young people like her have an interest in this topic and think about it seriously at college. She seems to have been a student in Tetsuro Kato's class.

Photo: A cafe near my apartment

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  • hi, i'm a korean reader of this book, "Painless Civilization".
    this book is so impressive to me.
    now, i'm reading the part of death, chapter 7.
    i see the first time that explanation of feeling about death in childhood 'memory' in this kind of book.
    and may i ask some Q?
    the cover of this book(this korean translation) looks like something classic or stubbornness.
    is this your intention?
    i think mostly korean not raise this book by this cover.
    but i think this cover is so contents.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6:16 PM, June 16, 2005  

  • Hi! Thank you for posting your comment. Chapter 7 is the core part of this book. I would like to know how you think about this part. As to the cover of the Korean translation, that design was made by the Korean publisher. I had nothing to do with the cover as well as the translated contents. I don't know whether this is a good translation or not, eithrer.

    By the way, I didn't know almost nothing about the readers' responses to this book, reputations, or criticisms in Korea. (I have read two book reviews in newspapers via web translation). How have this book accepted in Korea? If you know something please let us know.

    By Blogger Masahiro_Morioka, at 8:26 PM, June 16, 2005  

  • Masahiro,
    I notice your site mentions that an English translation of "Painless Civilization" is in progress. Do you have any idea when this will be published ? The other day I saw a documentary called "surplus", centred around the controversial anti-globalisation guru, John Zerzan. Are you familiar with his ideas ? What are your thoughts?

    By Blogger Ben, at 10:27 PM, June 22, 2005  

  • maemuki,
    The translation of my "Painless Civilization" will be restarted this summer. This is a very thick book, so it takes a lot of time to finish, I am afraid. But I think I have to do it myself....

    I didn't know about John Zerzan. I have just read about him on the web, but I feel his idea is different from my "painless civilization." His philosophy is too simplistic to analyze contemporary civilizaion.

    By Blogger Masahiro_Morioka, at 6:30 AM, June 23, 2005  

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