Gold 金 Chosen as 2012 Kanji of the Year
At the end of every year the Japanese people choose a kanji character that represents the sentiment of their society during the year that is coming to an end. The most voted character this year has been 金 (kin, きん) which means “gold”. It has been chosen because 2012 has been an olympic year, the year of a total solar eclipse and also in honour of Shinya Yamanaka, which was awarded the Nobel Prize in Medicine.
A monk in Kiyomizu temple in Kyoto writes every year the kanji chosen as kanji of the year: