Many nations undergo the bursting of economic bubbles as Japan did in the early 1990s. The mystery is why it has taken Japan - a nation once thought to have "solved" the issues of the industrial era - so long to regain its dynamism and vitality in the post industrial era. By looking at social pathologies like the nation's parasite singles, high suicides, and its one million social isolates or hikikomori, we can find new ways to understand Japan's long malaise. Michael Zielenziger, a former Tokyo bureau chief for Knight Ridder Newspapers, is the author of Shutting Out the Sun: How Japan Created its own Lost Generation published in fall, 2006 by Nan Talese/Doubleday Books. He is now a research scholar at the Institute of International Studies, University of California, Berkeley. He has researched and written about Asia for two decades and was a Pulitzer Prize finalist for his reporting from China.