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Seminars & Symposiums

Asia-Pacific Studies Seminar

2018-10-6 (Sat) 10:00 - 15:00

International Studies Seminar at Osaka University

Date: 6 October 2018 (Saturday)

Venue: Quartier Multilingue, Center for Education in Liberal Arts and Sciences, Toyonaka Campus, Osaka University

http://www.osaka-u.ac.jp/en/access/index.html#toyonaka (access map: Toyonaka Campus)

http://www.osaka-u.ac.jp/en/access/toyonaka/toyonaka.html l (campus map: 1st floor of #30)

(http://www.celas.osaka-u.ac.jp/facilities/ (in Japanese only)

 

Session 1     10:00-11:00

Tom French (Ritsumeikan University)

Title:

Red Spectre: Paradoxes within the Japanese Communist Party’s ‘Military Policy’ of 1950-1956

 

Abstract:

Between 1950 and 1956 the Japanese Communist Party, under Soviet and Chinese Communist pressure, abandoned their hitherto successful policy of democratic ‘peaceful revolution’ for violent Maoist influenced resistance to the Japanese government and Allied Occupation. The JCP’s ‘military policy’ resulted in dozens of violent incidents, including attacks on police boxes, murder of police officers, attacks on Occupation personnel, major violent riots (including ‘Bloody May Day’, arguably the largest violent protest in Japan’s postwar history) and attempts at the creation of Maoist style ‘liberated areas’ in rural parts of the country. The policy proved a failure but it nevertheless had significant impacts on Japanese postwar history and Japanese politics. These included the further souring of relations between the Left and Right, a process which also influenced the enhancement of Japan’s internal security structures including the enactment of the Subversive Activities Prevention Law and the creation of the National Police Reserve (one of the precursors of the contemporary Self Defence Forces). The policy and its ultimate failure also resulted in significant changes in the position of the JCP itself, ranging from its forced shift from a more conventional Marxist line to a Maoist position (paradoxically under Soviet pressure), to its adoption of anti-colonial and national liberation rhetoric within the Japanese context for the first time, and to eventually its near-collapse both in terms of both public support, and through factional division. Despite these significant and lasting legacies, the JCP’s policy remains virtually unexamined in the literature focusing on the period. The low level of scholarly attention paid to the events of the policy, its impacts, and their legacy is certainly evident in Japanese language studies of the era, but it is particularly notable in the English language scholarship. This paper attempts to address this absence and illuminate both the importance of the policy and the paradoxes within it which ultimately contributed to its failure.

 

Discussants:

*Steven Edward Ivings (Kyoto University)

http://www.econ.kyoto-u.ac.jp/faculty-members/professor/ivingssteven/

*Seng Ong (Nagoya University of Commerce and Business)

http://www.nucba.ac.jp/en/faculty/entry.html?bid=147&eid=13623

*Professor French’s seminar paper will be available in advance for prospective participants only.

 

 

Session 2     11:10 – 12:10

Rotem Kowner (University of Haifa)

http://asia.haifa.ac.il/staff/rkowner.html

Title:

The Long Repatriation and Its Impact on Postwar Japan

Abstract:

On August 15, 1945, there were some 6.5 million Japanese outside the boundaries of the Japanese home islands. More than 3.5 million of them were members of the Japanese armed forces. The vast majority of these men were not ordinary prisoners of war, but soldiers and sailors who laid their weapons in an organized manner following the Emperor’s Rescript on the Termination of the War. Using comparative data with regard to the surrender of the Axis Powers in the European theater and other conflicts in the 20th century and earlier, I argue that surrendered Japanese soldiers stranded overseas contributed in a unique manner to both processes of (mostly European) recolonization and decolonization of East Asia after August 1945. Used by allies to oppress local independence movements, they were instrumental in forging Japan's postwar status and its relations with the West as well as with the emerging states of Southeast Asia. 

Discussants:

*Steven Edward Ivings (Kyoto University)

*Seng Ong (Nagoya University of Commerce and Business)

 

*Professor Kowner’s seminar paper will be available for participants only.

 

 

Book Project Meeting (Asian Paradox) 12:30-14:30

 

Future Collaborative Research Project Meeting: 14:30-15:00

Date: 2018-10-6 (Sat) 10:00 - 15:00
Venue: Quartier Multilingue, Center for Education in Liberal Arts and Sciences, Toyonaka Campus, Osaka University
Registration: Registration by email is required for this seminar.
Contact: Yone Sugita
sugita@lang.osaka-u.ac.jp

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