A significant number of gaikokujin say koku is an integral part of their identity as a foreigner living in Japan.
Experts say a gaikokujin’s koku can often be the only thing that makes Japan a pleasurable experience.
“In many cases, their koku is all they live for,” says Professor Takai Nobuhiro.
A large proportion of gaikokujin in Japan believe koku is one of their fundamental rights.
“A gai should always come with a koku,” explains one foreigner.
It’s common for foreign residents in Japan to suffer from koku neglect, with many saying they need koku to feel self-assured.
“I need a well-pronounced koku to know I’m not being discriminated against.”
“If there’s no expression of koku, I’m being deprived of what it truly means to be a foreigner in Japan.”