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The Young in Rebellion – Japanese Teens in 1964

1960s, Everyday People, Youth Culture • 22049 Views • Comments Off on The Young in Rebellion – Japanese Teens in 1964

Back in September 1964 Life magazine published a special issue dedicated to Japan. One article called ‘The Young in Rebellion’ explored the youth culture of the country. Amongst the words were these wonderful black and white photos that captured the spirit of Japanese youth.

The first part of the article deals with teenage runaways. Each year thousands of youngsters tried to escape their rural homes and head for Tokyo. Although many reached their destination, a huge number didn’t. In just one year at the Ueno railway station, police picked up over 5000 runaways. 

Then the article moves on to the night time antics of the teenagers. The writer says 
“Many youths running away from old traditions go western with vengeance”. The piece takes a look at a gig by a band the writer calls “The Tokyo Beatles” and describes the ease of growing a Beatles haircut “It tends to grow that way”, the band also had their own unique outfit, trousers that fans could scribble on.

Finally the writer takes us to a Jazz coffee shop and an allnight party with the “Sleeping pill kids”. These were a group of teens who loved a bit of jazz and partying before they flaked-out on their futons.

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