John Middleton

Biography

Professor John Middleton was born in Melbourne, Australia in 1964 and first became acquainted with Tokyo in 1979.

After graduating from Monash University with a Bachelor of Arts degree with First Class Honours, majoring in Japanese language and Japanese studies, and a Bachelor of Laws degree, John was awarded a Japanese Government (Monbusho) Research Scholarship in 1990 to further his studies of Japanese language and law at Osaka University of Foreign Studies (now part of Osaka University) and Hitotsubashi University respectively. He now holds Master and Doctor of Laws degrees from Hitotsubashi University, has been admitted to practise as a Barrister and Solicitor of the Supreme Court of Victoria in Australia and an Attorney and Counselor-at-Law in the State of New York, and has spent two years as an Academic Visitor at the Faculty of Laws, University College London.

John currently serves as Professor of Anglo-American Law, specialising in comparative media law, at the Hitotsubashi University School of Law, which consistently ranks highest among all law schools in the country in terms of the performance of its graduates in the national bar examination. He is believed to be the first non-Japanese in history to be promoted from Assistant to Lecturer, Associate Professor, and Professor at the law faculty of a national university in Japan and the first Western legal scholar to write and publish a substantial body of work in Japanese. He also contributes to society as a Director of the Content Evaluation and Monitoring Association (EMA).

The "Tokyo, From One to Infinity" series is his first major non-academic work in his native tongue and a step towards realising his childhood dream of becoming an author. He sincerely hopes you will enjoy reading each instalment as much as he is enjoying creating them.

Smashwords Interview

What inspires you to get out of bed each morning?
The burning desire to know what has been going on in the world while I was away in the Land of Nod. The very first thing I do is switch on the computer in my study to check my email and scan the local and international news. It is also the best time to review with clarity whatever I have written late the night before and pondered over in my sleep. Believe me, I have some very strange dreams!

The wide variety of topics I address in the "Tokyo, From One to Infinity" series is in fact a direct reflection of my curiosity about all manner of things, both serious and trivial. Every essay is multifaceted and goes beyond the topic mentioned in the blurb.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
The thought that I am speaking directly to the hearts and minds of readers and moving them in some positive way. If what I have written provides readers with food for thought, makes them laugh or cry, or inspires them in some small way, then I will have accomplished everything I set out to achieve.

My hope in writing "Tokyo, From One to Infinity" is that the universal nature of many of the stories I tell will lead readers to reflect on various aspects of their own lives, in their part of world, as well. Although I am the vessel or constant for many of the earlier stories, the series is not just about me, Tokyo, or Japan. You could say I am writing about the human condition in general.
Read more of this interview.

Where to buy in print


Books

A Case Study of the Operations of an Australian Bank in Japan
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Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 20,760. Language: English. Published: July 13, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Business & Economics » Banks & banking
As mentioned in “How I Came to Be Here”, the text of a First-Class Honours thesis written by Professor John Middleton in a previous life. This dissertation discusses the operations of the Tokyo Branch of Westpac Banking Corporation as they existed in 1987, focusing on the dynamics of the relationships between the expatriate and Japanese staff from a sociolinguistic perspective.
In the Words of a Song
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Series: Tokyo, From One to Infinity. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 1,950. Language: English. Published: May 29, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Travel » Essays & Travelogues
“I’ve heard many bad stories about you, and you must admit that most of them are true!” Or were they just the product of a fertile imagination? Either way, I will love you and leave you for the fiftieth time with this…
Borrowed Expressions
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Series: Tokyo, From One to Infinity. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 1,170. Language: English. Published: May 29, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Travel » Essays & Travelogues
The English language owes much of its richness to the countless expressions borrowed from other tongues, and Japan has made some notable contributions to the lexicon. Very few native speakers of English are aware, however, of the etymology of some of the Japanese words they use. How many people would have realised, for example, that “karaoke” is partly a corruption of English?
Dining Out
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Series: Tokyo, From One to Infinity. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 3,080. Language: English. Published: May 28, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Travel » Essays & Travelogues
Move over, Paris! An introduction to Tokyo, the official gourmet capital of the world, ranging from the Michelin Diet of my imagination to the real-life American supermodel peanut butter diet and everything in between. Includes some practical advice for tourists visiting Japan and Taiwan on a budget and some irreverent comments about Japanese “obatarian” (battleaxes) and Starbucks.
Tea Leaves in Coffee Cups
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Series: Tokyo, From One to Infinity. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 2,290. Language: English. Published: May 26, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Biography » Autobiographies & Memoirs
Just when you thought it was safe to dine out… Sometimes it is better not to know those secret ingredients in the food and drinks we consume, but in some circumstances, such lack of knowledge could kill us. When it comes to food poisoning, no one is immune and nowhere is safe! My first job in Japan leads to me question some aspects of food safety and hygiene in advanced countries.
Billy Idol Gone Wrong
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Series: Tokyo, From One to Infinity. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 1,540. Language: English. Published: May 26, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Travel » Essays & Travelogues
I have been called many things in my time, but "Billy Idol gone wrong" surely takes the cake! Look beyond the differences in fashion sense and demeanour, however, and his fans might be surprised to discover that my supposed antithesis and I actually have some things in common. A reflection on how we expatriates come to assimilate physically in our adopted countries either by accident or design.
Love Is All That Matters
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Series: Tokyo, From One to Infinity. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 3,140. Language: English. Published: May 24, 2014. Category: Essay » Legal
In this essay, I discuss, with empathy, the concept of same-sex marriage from the perspective of someone who has both religious faith and a legal mind. In my view, opposition to marriage equality is not only misguided, but also morally, ethically, and legally wrong, and undermines the very institution of marriage. As the Bible says, "Love is happy with the truth," and love is all that matters.
Naked Communication
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Series: Tokyo, From One to Infinity. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 5,510. Language: English. Published: May 23, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Travel » Essays & Travelogues
Japanese naked communication was once too much for prudish American sailors to take, but attitudes had changed significantly by the time Marilyn Monroe arrived in Tokyo on her honeymoon. Today, people come from all over the world to engage in the practice, often unaware that there is more to it than just hot water. Here, I discuss the dynamics of communal bathing from a multicultural perspective.
Reef Beach
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Series: Tokyo, From One to Infinity. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 2,980. Language: English. Published: May 22, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Travel » Essays & Travelogues
My late aunt and uncle enriched the lives of countless Australians and instilled in me a greater appreciation of opera, conservation, and religion. They also introduced me to the delights of Reef Beach, a haven for nudists on Sydney Harbour, before it fell victim to a misinformation campaign by some "moralistic" local residents. This is our story, plus some off-the-wall revelations from Japan.
City Walks
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Series: Tokyo, From One to Infinity. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 2,040. Language: English. Published: May 20, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Travel » Essays & Travelogues
Whenever I visit another country on business or for pleasure, I always make a point of seeing how the local people live and picturing how different my life would be if I lived among them. Part of my routine is to explore entire neighbourhoods on foot, but sometimes travelling as a semi-respectable, law-abiding male can present challenges of its own…
Ilha Formosa
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Series: Tokyo, From One to Infinity. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 2,370. Language: English. Published: May 20, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Travel » Essays & Travelogues
Japan has been my home for such a long time now that it has become second nature, but sometimes I just want to escape the harsh, mundane realities of my everyday life by running away to somewhere safe but exotic, where I cannot speak the language and every moment of the day brings some new discovery. For me, that place has become the “beautiful island” of Taiwan, and the attractions are many.
Lawyerly Behaviour
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Series: Tokyo, From One to Infinity. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 1,830. Language: English. Published: May 20, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Biography » Autobiographies & Memoirs
When I was a mischievous tyke in Melbourne, no one imagined I would grow up to be an Australian lawyer, let alone a New York attorney or law professor in Japan. If my family had only been paying attention, however, they would have seen the signs when I dutifully removed my pyjamas at the door at the age of three. Naughty, but nice!
How I Came to Be Here
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Series: Tokyo, From One to Infinity. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 10,590. Language: English. Published: May 19, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Travel » Essays & Travelogues
Take an ordinary Australian boy, add some breakfast cereal, send him to school, and see what happens… Was it fate that led me to become a permanent resident of Japan, or am I simply another example of permissive parenting gone wrong? One man’s story of how he became a pioneering, expatriate law professor in Japan despite having no family connections to this country.
Kiss and Tell
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Series: Tokyo, From One to Infinity. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 3,050. Language: English. Published: May 17, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Biography » Autobiographies & Memoirs
Discretion may be my middle name, but it would be a disservice to some of my younger and more impressionable readers not to share at least one celebrity kiss-and-tell story of my own. Although the contents will almost certainly not be what you expect, they should still leave you feeling warm and fuzzy in a Hollywood sort of way. The lesson to be learned is that a single kiss can change a life.
Thirty Days Hath September
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Series: Tokyo, From One to Infinity. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 1,230. Language: English. Published: May 17, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Travel » Essays & Travelogues
No matter where we hail from or where we have chosen to live, we long-term expatriates tend to kid ourselves that we are men of the world. Without the benefit of a local education, however, we will always be at a disadvantage compared to that tiny first-grader who lives next door. In this essay, a Taiwanese pop song inspires me to remedy one of the many gaps in my own knowledge.
My Plastic Face
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Series: Tokyo, From One to Infinity. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 1,510. Language: English. Published: May 11, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Biography » Autobiographies & Memoirs
Most people are loath to admit they have had work done, but I positively embrace my plastic! In fact, my life would have been quite different had I not agreed to go under the knife…
Poor Kitty Kitty
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Series: Tokyo, From One to Infinity. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 1,350. Language: English. Published: May 11, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Travel » Essays & Travelogues
In East Asia, there is no escaping the many charms of Hello Kitty. Although the real Kitty White lives just down the road from me at Sanrio Puroland and has officially made her presence known at the campus where I work, she still remains very much a woman of mystery in some important respects...
Cousin Kate
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Series: Tokyo, From One to Infinity. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 1,530. Language: English. Published: May 11, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Biography » Autobiographies & Memoirs
There goes my knighthood! I am probably no more closely related to Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge than you are, but that has not prevented her from unwittingly encroaching upon some of my territory here in Japan or me from discovering a tenuous link between our families that is sure to impress the literati. Some Middletons really sparkle!
What's in a Name?
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Series: Tokyo, From One to Infinity. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 1,400. Language: English. Published: May 11, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Travel » Essays & Travelogues
If your name is John or you have ever known someone called John, then you will be well aware of the persecution we suffer in supposedly politically-correct countries such as America. Even in Japan, I am sometimes treated like a dog! Is this fair? We Johns of the world do not expect sympathy, but surely we deserve some respect?
What's a Man Like You...
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Series: Tokyo, From One to Infinity. Price: Free! Words: 1,630. Language: English. Published: May 11, 2014. Category: Nonfiction » Travel » Essays & Travelogues
Like moths to a flame! Normally, I would be flattered to be approached by some pretty young thing at a nightclub, but have been known to take exception to some lines of questioning… An introduction to the "Tokyo, From One to Infinity" series.

John Middleton’s tag cloud

aaron yan    adolescence    adultery    akan national park    alex tucker    alfred kinsey    alkira    america    amy winehouse    andy lau    animal kingdom    animal law    ariel lin    assimilation    auschwitz    australia    australian opera    bangkok    banking    banks    barack obama    barbie doll    bathing    beach adventure    betrayal    bibendum    biblical teachings    biculturalism    bigotry    billy idol    broadway    bullying    calendar    career choices    catherine    cats    celebrity diets    chiang kaishek    china    christianity    cindy crawford    cinema    citizenship    civil service    classical music    coco ichibanya    commodore perry    confucianism    conmen    conservation    conservatism    cosmetic surgery    counting    cpop    cumbria    curry    dating    david cassidy    dear john letters    department stores    desperate housewives    destiny    dining out    discretion    discrimination    dishwashing    donoghue v stevenson    duchess of cambridge    duty of care    education    elizabeth gaskell    employment practices    england    english language    entertainment industry    esteem    eternal summer    etymology    expatriate lifestyle    fahrenheit    fashion    filial piety    food allergies    food hygiene    food poisoning    france    fukushima disaster    genghis khan    gregorian calendar    grief    harajuku    harassment    hello kitty    hitler    hitoshi aoki    hitotsubashi university    hokkaido    hollywood    hong kong    hot springs    hualien    human rights    humour    image    immigration and citizenship    in time with you    infidelity    injury    jacki weaver    jane austen    japan    japanese language    jeremy drakeford    joe dimaggio    john howard    john middleton murry    jpop    junichiro koizumi    kamikaze    kaohsiung    karaoke    kate middleton    kawaii    king george iii    kings cross    kinsey scale    kissing    kotaro koizumi    kuala lumpur    kublai khan    kusatsu    kyle maclachlan    lavender kitty    law    law of torts    law reform    lawyer    leonardo dicaprio    london    macaques    madonna    malaysia    mandopop    marilyn monroe    marine boy    marriage    marriage and family    marriage equality    masao horibe    melbourne    memoir    michael kirby    michelin    mnemonics    modesty    mount fuji    nakamura    nakedness    naoko kawai    national parks    naturism    naughtiness    negligence    new south wales    new york    nudist beach    nudity    numerology    obatarian    obscenity    olympics    onsen    opera    osaka    oscar hammerstein ii    paris    parks and recreation    pippa middleton    piracy    plastic surgery    pop music    popular culture    prejudice    prince charles    prince william    privacy    professor    prostitution    prudence tucker    prudishness    public bathing    racism    reef beach    restaurants    rimi natsukawa    rodgers and hammerstein    romance    salesmen    sanrio    sanrio puroland    seiko matsuda    sense and sensibility    sexual harassment    sexual orientation    sexual repression    shibuya    shinkansen    shiretoko    show boat    show business    shyness    skipper doll    snow monkeys    sociolinguistics    songwriting    south korea    south pacific    spiritualism    starbucks    supermarkets    supernatural    suzanna paxton    sydney    sydney harbour    taipei    taiwan    takashi matsumoto    tama center    teaching    thailand    the partridge family    theatre    theory of evolution    thomas the tank engine    titanic    tohoku    tokyo    transgender    trendy dramas    tsunami    voluntary work    westmorland    westpac    whitney houston    william wordsworth    wu chun    yakitori