The Asia-Pacific Journal: Japan Focus Newsletter
Newsletter No. 38. 2014       

September 22, 2014

New Articles


Yesterday, September 21, as 400,000 people joined the People's Climate March in New York City and with hundreds of thousands of others around the world, made this the largest march of its  kind ever, the Asia-Pacific Journal announces the intention to prioritize climate crisis and climate solutions in the years ahead. As one marcher signed, "There is no planet B." We invite submissions accordingly.

Illustrative is
Andrew DeWit's analysis of a surprising range of new green energy policies implemented after the 3.11 disaster, including those advanced, however unwillingly or absent-mindedly, by an Abe regime bent on nuclear restarts but thus far stymied in its efforts to do so. The article elaborates on the promising role that efficiency and conservation have achieved in Japan's power mix without nuclear, noting important initiatives from local government and private capital, and revealing the potential, and necessity, for Japan to become a global leader in the new green economy.

On the 110th anniversary of the death of Lafcadio Hearn, Roger Pulvers reflects on the legacy of the American naturalized-Japanese writer. Relating the difficulties he faced throughout his life, the article calls attention to his pseudo-anthropological style, in particular to his writings on post-reconstruction America, in addition to his lamenting paeans for the "quaint" Japan he saw disappearing before his eyes. While Hearn's reputation in America would subsequently decline, he would be coopted by many Japanese as "proof that the Japanese soul was more profound, more subtle and more potent in its pure spirituality than anything the materialistic West could possibly muster."
Two articles offer insight into the Zainichi experience of Koreans in  postwar Japan.
Shota Ogawa describes the history of little-known Korean film companies during the American occupation. Energized by their liberation through the defeat of imperial Japan, the Koreans involved were entangled in the economic, ideological, and cultural realities of the immediate postwar. By studying the records of US censorship, advertisements in Japanese and Korean print media and documents kept by the companies, Ogawa shows how Korean film producers maneuvered between the Occupation authorities and the Japanese cinema world to project their visions of a Korean national cinema in Japan.

Misook Lee traces the rise of a Japan-Korea solidarity movement uniting Zainichi, Japanese and South Korean activists to play a role in challenging the dictatorship and contributing to the rise of democracy. Lee contrasts the free wheeling cross-border movement to the student-centered anti-Ampo movement of the 1960s.  
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