New open access article about hikikomori, Jan 2016


Warning 1

The article is published in a journal included in Jeffrey Beall’s list of predatory publishers.

Warning 2

This is NOT the first study to explore the indepth experience of individuals suffering from hikikomori syndrome in a non-clinical setting.

BAJS conference : my presentation’s references


Current Research and Perspectives on Socially Withdrawn Youths (Hikikomori), Nicolas Tajan, Kyoto University


American Psychiatric Association (2013) Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. 5th Edition: DSM-5 [Paperback]. Washington DC: American Psychiatric Publishing.

Arnett, J., Žukauskiene, R., Sugimura K., (2014) The new life stage of emerging adulthood at ages 18–29 years: implications for mental health. Lancet Psychiatry 2014(1): 569–576

Groleau, D., Young, A. and Kirmayer, L.J. (2006) The McGill illness narrative interview (MINI): An interview schedule to elicit meanings and modes of reasoning related to illness experience. Transcultural Psychiatry 43(4): 671–691.

Kato, T. et al. (2012) Does the Hikikomori syndrome of social withdrawal exist outside Japan? A preliminary international investigation. Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology 47(7): 1061–1075.

Kondo, N., Sakai, M., Kuroda, Y., Kiyota, Y., Kitabata, Y. and Kurosawa, M. (2011) General condition of Hikikomori (prolonged social withdrawal) in Japan: Psychiatric diagnosis and outcome in mental healths welfare centres. International Journal of Social Psychiatry: 1–8.

Lewis-Fernandez, R., Aggarwal, N. K., Hinton, L., Hinton, D. E., Kirmayer, L.J.Dsm-5(r) (2015) Handbook on the Cultural Formulation Interview (1st Edition) [Paperback]. Washington DC: American Psychiatric Publishing.

Ryder A, Sunohara M, Kirmayer LJ. Culture and personality disorder: from a fragmented literature to a contextually grounded alternative. Current Opinion in Psychiatry 2015;28(1):40–5.

Tajan, N. (2015a) Adolescents’ school non-attendance and the spread of psychological counselling in Japan. Asia Pacific Journal of Counselling and Psychotherapy. doi:10.1080/21507686.2015.1029502.

Tajan, N. (2015b) Social withdrawal and psychiatry: A comprehensive review of Hikiko- mori. Neuropsychiatrie de l’Enfance et de l’Adolescence 63(5) : 324-331, neurenf.2015.03.008.

Tajan N., (2015c) Japanese post-modern social renouncers: An exploratory study of the narratives of Hikikomori subjects, Subjectivity 8: 283-304 | doi:10.1057/sub.2015.11

Uchida Y and Norasakkunkit V (2015) The NEET and Hikikomori spectrum: Assessing the risks and consequences of becoming culturally marginalized. Frontiers in Psychology. 6:1117. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2015.01117

British Association of Japanese Studies (BAJS), 31 October, Nagoya

Health and Well-Being in Contemporary Japan

This symposium brings together four papers addressing issues of health and well-being. Papers will be 20-30 minutes, and there will be extensive time given to discussion.

Date and Time: 31 October 2015, 2pm-6pm

Venue: Aichi Prefectural University (Nagakute Campus), Nagoya. Room H203. Access map is here. Campus map is here (in Japanese).

Attendance: Free to BAJS and non-BAJS members alike, but please contact Philip Seaton in advance by email to let him know if you plan to come.


Does multilingualism have a negative influence on the linguistic and cognitive development of children on the autistic spectrum?, Eugene Ryan, Toyohashi University of Technology

Current Research and Perspectives on Socially Withdrawn Youths (Hikikomori), Nicolas Tajan, Kyoto University

Broken Bodies, Labour, and Well-being, Emma E. Cook, Hokkaido University

The Folk Medicine Market in Japan: The Case of Eczema, Miho Ushiyama, Waseda University

More informations

Comments about Prof. Kato T.’s interview (the daily mail)

2A5375F300000578-0-image-a-3_1436393490970Prof. Kato Takahiro is right when he says: “Most case studies have only focused on the psychological aspect, but hikikomori is not just about mental illness

However, I would partly disagree when he says: It’s very rare to find hikikomori in poor families” and ‘Majority of hikikomori are graduated people, after graduating university they became hikikomori.
I met hikikomori subjects from poor families who didn’t go to university (see my article in Subjectivity).
It does not mean that they are the majority. But let’s not forget them.
Counter arguments to Kato’s claims could also be found in Uchida and Norasakkunkit (2015) recent article: “Sometimes NEET and Hikikomori are perceived as resulting from overprotection by upper-middle class parents who can afford to pay their children’s living expenses, but our results suggest that this is largely not the case.” Total number of survey respondents of study 2 was 10,744 and their article is open access.
Japanese high-school dropouts are abandoned by society (see my publication)
Most of hikikomori subjects do not consult psychiatrists: psychiatrists only meet with a minority of hikikomori cases (see my review) and hikikomori subjects attend NPO activities where psychiatrists are absent (see my article in Subjectivity).

Free access / final version of my article (review of hikikomori)

The final version of my article (review of hikikomori) with full bibliographical details is now available online.

Free access for the first 50 viewers:

This article provides a review of psychiatrists’ studies on social withdrawal (hikikomori), bring out the main themes and recurrent problems, and s…