Emperor Naruhito (front) and Empress Masako (right) at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo, Japan. Photo: EPA
Wee Kek Koon
Opinion

Opinion

Reflections by Wee Kek Koon

Is Japan’s refusal to put a female on the throne a plot to keep imperial line unbroken?

Unlike in Europe, where the names of royal families can change with each generation, in Asia such a move would be considered the death of a dynasty

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Emperor Naruhito (front) and Empress Masako (right) at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo, Japan. Photo: EPA
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The expected abdication of Japanese Emperor Akihito on April 30 will mark the end of the Heisei era. Photo: Alamy
Wee Kek Koon
Opinion

Opinion

Reflections by Wee Kek Koon

As Japan prepares to mark end of an era, a look back at how China started the system

Era names were first adopted by emperors in ancient China, later by the countries that came under the nation’s sphere of influence, including Korea, Vietnam and Japan

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The expected abdication of Japanese Emperor Akihito on April 30 will mark the end of the Heisei era. Photo: Alamy
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