- ソシオロジ (ISSN:05841380)
- vol.48, no.1, pp.21-37,173, 2003-05-31 (Released:2016-05-25)
Recently, the Japanese authorities have been enforcing measures to support the societal reinsertion of Nojukusha (Japanese outdoor sleepers). "Support center" programs attempt to get them out of homelessness by giving them access to jobs or social welfare support, and giving them an "appropriate" place in Japanese society. These measures clearly show the existence of Nojukusha who reject this program and remain on the street. They are categorized as "people who refuse a decent civic life," and they become the targets of pressure and exclusion. If their "preference" is reasonable for them, what is the logic that sustains this choice? This paper attempts to examine the logic of their "preference. " For this purpose, I rely on the theory of "life structure" and adjust it to grasp Nojukusha street life. Based on survey data, I describe the process and state of Nojukusha street life. This data consists of survey data for 672 Nojukusha and life history data for 722 Nojukusha. I conclude that Nojukusha "preference" means "resistance" because their life structure is patterned both by the necessity to survive in the street and by an ethic: "we should live our lives by working for ourselves." Nojukusha, who have been excluded from the labor market, find that it is impossible for them to get away from homelessness by getting a job. For them, the support center program offered by the authorities means a whole life depending on social welfare services. The street life, then, is the only one they can choose to conform themselves to their ethic. It is then the only reasonable preference. This paper leads to a paradoxical conclusion. The "preference" for homeless life tends to be regarded as deviance from public opinion and the actions of "normal" citizens. However Nojukusha life is based on their own values.