Russian Japanology Review

Advanced search

Japan: Society of middle class


Despite the economic difficulties of the last two and a half decades, Japan remains to be one of the richest countries in the world. In addition, it is also one of the most prosperous countries - both in terms of distribution of the results of economic growth among the population, as well as by a number of characteristics of the standard of living. The article examines the influence of education democratization, the ideology of lifetime employment, government policies of equalizing revenues and support weak sectors and others on the formation of the middle class. The basic indicators of standard of living of the Japanese are given.

About the Author

I. P. Lebedeva
Institute of Oriental Studies Russian Academy of Sciences
Russian Federation


1. Annual Health, Labour and Welfare Report 2013/2014 // Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare URL: (accessed: 12 June 2018).

2. Annual Health, Labour and Welfare Report 2015 // Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare URL: (accessed: 12 June 2018).

3. Annual Report on the Labour Force Survey 2015. Population aged 15 years old and over by labour force status, status in employment, type of employment and age // Statistics Bureau of Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications. URL: (accessed: 12 June 2018).

4. Chiavacci, D. (2008) From Class Struggle to General Middle-Class Society to Divided Society: Societal Model of Inequality in Postwar Japan. Social Science Japan Journal. N 1. Pp. 5-27.

5. Comprehensive Handbook of Japanese Taxes (2006). Tokyo: Ministry of Finance.

6. Databook of International Labour Statistics 2017. // The Japan Institute for Labour Policy and Training. URL: (accessed: 12: June 2018)

7. Haghirian, P. (ed.) (2016) Routledge Handbook of Japanese Business and Management. Routledge, London and N.Y. : Routledge. Japan Today. 29 September 2017

8. Kokumin seikatsu-ni kansuru seron tyosa: [Survey of Public Opinion on Living Standards]. August 2016 // Prime Minister’s Office. URL: (accessed: 10 October 2017).

9. Labor Situation in Japan and Its Analysis. General Overview 2015/2016 //The Japan Institute for Labour Policy and Training. URL: (accessed: 12 June 2018)

10. Lebedeva, I.P. (2016 a) Sistema sotsialnogo obespecheniya Yaponii: dostizheniya I problemy [Japan’s Social Security System: Achievements and Problems] Yaponskie issledovaniya [Japanese Studies in Russia]. No 4. Pp. 23-35.

11. Lebedeva, I.P. (2016 b) Yaponskaya molodyozh na rynke truda: ekonomicheskiye I sotsialnye aspekty [The Japanese Young on the Labor Market: Economic and Social Aspects]. Yaponskie issledovaniya [Japanese Studies in Russia]. No 2. Pp. 43-56.

12. Markaryan, S.B. (2010) Selskoye khozyaistvo v usloviyakh protektsionistskoi politiki [Agriculture amid Protectionist Policy] In E. Molodyakova, S. Markaryan (ed): Yaponiya: polveka pravleniya liberal-demokratov [Japan: Half-Century of Liberal Democratic Rule] M.: AIRO-XXI. Pp. 156-175.

13. Monthly Results. April 2018 // Statistics Bureau. Ministry of International Affairs and Communications. URL: (accessed: 12 June 2018).

14. Nihon tokei nenkan 2017 [Japan Statistical Yearbook]. Tokyo: Statistics Bureau.

15. Shyoshika shyakai taisaku hakusho: [White Paper on Politics in Society with Declining Birth Rate] (2017). Tokyo: Cabinet Office, Government of Japan.

16. Social Security in Japan 2014 // National Institute of Population and Social Security Research. URL: (accessed: 10 October 2016).

17. Tokei de miru Nihon: [Japan through Lens of Statistics]. (2008) Тokyo: Nihon tokei kyokai.

18. World Development Indicators. Size of Есоnomy. // The World Bank. URL: (accessed: 20 September 2017)

19. World Development Indicators. Country Profile. Japan // The World Bank. URL: (accessed: 20 September 2017)

20. Yano Masakazu. (2013) Japan’s New Recruits: Victims of Japanese-Style Family and Japanese-Style Employment. Japan Labor Review. No.1. (Vol. 10). Pp. 62-79.

21. URL: (accessedd: 04 September 2018)

22. Yaponiya 90-kh: krizis sistemy ili vremennye sboi?; [Japan of the 1990s: Systemic Crisis or Temporary Malfunctions?] (1998) Мoscow: Vostochnaya literatura.

23. Yaponiya: perevorachivaya stranitsu: [Japan; Turning the Page]. (1998) Мoscow: Vostochnaya literatura.


For citations:

Lebedeva I.P. Japan: Society of middle class. Russian Japanology Review. 2018;1(1):40-54.

Views: 1523

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

ISSN 2658-6444 (Print)
ISSN 2658-6789 (Online)