The Journal of Japanese Studies



Monitoring Health and the Body:
Anthropometry, Lifestyle Risks, and the Japanese Obesity Crisis

The 2008 introduction of the special health checkup (tokutei kenkō shinsa) signaled a major shift in Japanís health policy away from a high-risk approach toward a population approach based on the epidemiological probability of contracting a disease. This article places the governmentís concern with mapping obesity within its longstanding interest in surveying the national physique and sociological debates on risk in late modernity. The empirical case study outlines the making of the obesity crisis, its main actors, and their interests. Far from being an objective risk, obesity emerges as a social construct and a major apparatus of neoliberal politics through which individuals are encouraged to engage in self-regulation.

Volume 38, Number 1 (Winter 2012)
© 2012 Society for Japanese Studies

Marie Anchordoguy and Kevin M. Doak, Coeditors     Martha L. Walsh, Managing Editor
The Journal of Japanese Studies
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