The Last Dream
The Last Dream
This chapter discusses a business plan that derivatives trader Aoki crafted in his effort to raise money for a hypnotherapy clinic that would specialize in addressing the psychological problems of Japanese youth. The business plan as a genre of writing became salient in the early 2000s, in the midst of the rise of the culture of venture capitalism in Japan. As a former antiwar student activist turned trader, Aoki sought to revisit his youthful passion to change Japan and tackle what he saw as the negative consequences of Japan's uncompromising pursuit of economic growth. The discussion focuses on the debate concerning this project between Aoki and Tada, who helped Aoki draft the business plan. The debate ultimately points to the two financial market professionals' complex views on the role of belief in the market and in life, and the possibility of an exit from finance and capitalism. Using this debate and the contrast between the two men's seemingly different dreams of an exit from their work, the chapter brings to light a particular kind of commitment emerging at the intersections of arbitrage and arbitrageurs' lives, a commitment to keep in view both an endpoint to their work and the endlessness of their work.
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