The Demographic Imperative - Growing Old and Loving It: Japan Turns Gray and We, Too

The Demographic Imperative – Growing Old and Loving It: Japan Turns Gray and We, Too

T.R. Reid, Award-winning Journalist
January 24, 2020

With more than a quarter of its population over 65, Japan is making major economic and cultural adjustments to deal with the flood of kōreisha  () — “upper age persons.” This brings some problems; the nation now has more deaths than births every year. But many kōreisha are having the time of their lives –growing old and loving it. And the economic impact has been minimal. As other wealthy democracies, including the U.S., face the same demographic transition, Japan can teach us how to turn gray with humor and grace.

T. R. Reid is one of the nation’s best-known reporters through his books and articles, his documentary films, his reporting for the Washington Post, and his light-hearted commentaries on NPR’s Morning Edition. At The Washington Post, he covered Congress and four presidential campaigns. He served as the paper’s bureau chief in Tokyo and London. Reid has reported from 4 dozen countries on five continents. He has written ten books in English and three in Japanese. His 2018 book is “A Fine Mess: A Global Quest for a Simpler, Fairer, and More Efficient Tax System”.

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