The term Karoshi was first coined in the 1970s during Japan’s postwar era of rapid economic growth. “Doctors were beginning to see a number of employees who seemed healthy otherwise simply dropping dead,” said Scott North, a sociology professor at Osaka University. “They put their knowledge of cardiovascular diseases together with the situation they were seeing to infer that it was overwork that was killing these people.” It is a common phenomenon, in Japan, to see workers dying due to overwork. A Japanese worker died after clocking 159 overtime hours. These are beyond the normal 40 hours prescribed by the International Labor Law.
Guolaosi – a similar Chinese term for overwork.
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