Do Japanese express pain as western people do?

Sumio Hoka

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


As pain is an unpleasant experience, sensorial and emotional, it may possess a different meaning in a different society with its own culture and history. Pain in English has the meaning of punishment in the verbal origin. However, pain in Japanese, which is called "itami", means extraordinary state of something without containing the meaning of punishment. The Japanese who originally have view of life of empathy and assimilation with the nature, have tended not to regard the pain as the object being overcome. Thus, the Japanese may have been capable to give a unique message to the West, regarding the treatment of pain.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)572-576
Number of pages5
JournalJapanese Journal of Anesthesiology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 1 2004

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine


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