Weekly Shonen Magazine Deals with AIDS in 2-Part Manga
posted on by Egan Loo
This year's 50th and 51st issues of Kodansha's Weekly Shōnen Magazine is publishing a two-part 15 no Yoru manga story about the AIDS epidemic this month. The story centers on a boy who discovers that his girlfriend may have the sexually transmitted disease. The story began last Wednesday in Japan and will finish in this Wednesday's issue. 15 no Yoru is an irregularly serialized anthology manga that deals with societal issues in Weekly Shōnen Magazine. Since 2005, various artists have used the title to tackle such issues as neglect of children and the elderly, drug addiction, school bullying, and hikikomori — the recent phenomenon of extreme reclusiveness and anti-social behavior among some individuals.
According to the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) via globalhealthfacts.org, AIDS, and the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) that causes it, has not affected Japan as much as other countries. Out of the Japanese population of 127 million in 2007, only an estimated 9,600 people and less than 0.1% of the adult population have been living with HIV or AIDS. In spite of this (or perhaps because of this), the Japan AIDS Prevention Awareness Network and the BBC have reported that awareness of the disease and its prevention among young people in Japan remain low to nonexistent.
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