From the article Shutting Themselves In
[quote]When he finally left his room one April afternoon last year, he had spent half of his life as a shut-in. Like Takeshi and Shuichi, Y.S. suffered from a problem known in Japan as hikikomori, which translates as “withdrawal” and refers to a person sequestered in his room for six months or longer with no social life beyond his home. (The word is a noun that describes both the problem and the person suffering from it and is also an adjective, like “alcoholic.”) …
South Korea and Taiwan have reported a scattering of hikikomori, and isolated cases may have always existed in Japan. But only in the last decade and only in Japan has hikikomori become a social phenomenon. Like anorexia, which has been largely limited to Western cultures, hikikomori is a culturebound syndrome that thrives in one particular country during a particular moment in its history.[/quote]
Interesting - I wonder if it has something to do with a Japanese colonial thing.
It’s funny, just this past weekend, I spent so much time surfing the Internet and watching DVDs, I barely left my apartment to enjoy the nice weather. I had thought, “boy, I could have spent the entire weekend in there” - and these people stay cooped up for 15 years!
Would posting on Forumosa be considered a “social life”?
The other interesting thing is that this special word rhymes with the name of my favorite actress