world war ii
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Daishiro Nomiya

High modernity claims that the modernity project gave rise to institutional organs of modern nation states, culminating in an emergence of ultra-military states with wartime economy in the early twentieth century. It also argues that the same developmental pattern continued to dominate in the post-World War II period. This chapter examines this high-modernity thesis, employing Japan and Hiroshima as cases to be analyzed. Against the high-modernity thesis, many believe that Japan had a historical disjuncture in 1945, being ultramilitary before the end of World War II and a peaceful nation after. Examinations show that, while the modernity project controlled a large-scale historical process in Japan, it met vehement resistance, and became stranded in Hiroshima.

2022 ◽  
Vol 30 (1) ◽  
pp. 159-187
Erica Kanesaka

Abstract This article explores the ties between anti-Black racist kitsch and kawaii culture through the history of the Dakko-chan doll. In what came to be called the “Dakko-chan boom” of 1960, tens of thousands of Japanese people lined up to purchase an inflatable blackface doll with a circular red mouth, grass skirt, and winking hologram eyes. Dakko means “to hug,” and Dakko-chan's astronomical popularity resulted in part from the way the doll could be worn as an accessory, attached to the body by its hugging arms. This article asks what it meant for Japan, a nation still recovering from World War II and the American occupation, to quite literally embrace American blackface in the form of an embraceable doll. Rejecting the claim that blackface loses its significance in a Japanese context, this article argues that Dakko-chan cannot be considered devoid of racist meanings. Emerging amid the political turmoil surrounding the revision of the US-Japan Security Treaty, Dakko-chan came to express a wide range of contradictory feelings about race, sex, and nation, illustrating how affective attachments to racist forms have accrued rather than dissipated through their movement into new cultural contexts.

2022 ◽  
pp. 659-683
Thomas W. Zeiler

2022 ◽  
Naoki Sakai

In The End of Pax Americana, Naoki Sakai focuses on U.S. hegemony's long history in East Asia and the effects of its decline on contemporary conceptions of internationality. Engaging with themes of nationality in conjunction with internationality, the civilizational construction of differences between East and West, and empire and decolonization, Sakai focuses on the formation of a nationalism of hikikomori, or “reclusive withdrawal”—Japan’s increasingly inward-looking tendency since the late 1990s, named for the phenomenon of the nation’s young people sequestering themselves from public life. Sakai argues that the exhaustion of Pax Americana and the post--World War II international order—under which Taiwan, South Korea, Hong Kong, and China experienced rapid modernization through consumer capitalism and a media revolution—signals neither the “decline of the West” nor the rise of the East, but, rather a dislocation and decentering of European and North American political, economic, diplomatic, and intellectual influence. This decentering is symbolized by the sense of the loss of old colonial empires such as those of Japan, Britain, and the United States.

2022 ◽  
Vol 19 (4) ◽  
pp. 154-157
M. A. Sudakov

Obraztsov, P. A. Igor Sikorsky: four wars and two homelands of the famous aircraft designer. Moscow, Molodaya gvardiya publishing house, 2021, 239 [1] p.: ill. (Series of biographies: The life of remarkable people; issue 1875). ISBN 978-5-235-04435-7.Igor Sikorsky created a family of the world’s best helicopters, which transported marines and doctors during almost all wars of the 20th and 21st centuries, mail and fire extinguishing equipment, oversized cargo, ordinary passengers and even US presidents. In Russia, this Russian-American genius created the world’s first huge multi-engine aircrafts Russky Vityaz [Russian Knight] and Ilya Muromets, and in America, where he was respectfully called Mister Helicopter, extraordinary seaplanes that crossed the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans even before World War II. 

2022 ◽  

Sir William Gerard Golding (1911–1993), the writer of Lord of the Flies (LOTF), occupies a pivotal position within the post–World War II canon of writers. Though Golding does not seem to belong to any particular “school” or movement of fiction writers who wrote at the height of Cold War and its aftermath per se, he is a staple in high school, college, and university curricula all over the globe. His magnum opus, Lord of the Flies (1954), transformed him into a writer who commands worldwide attention. In the book he attacked the belief in any stable notions of civilization, society, and culture, and was keen to show the innate depravity of the human spirit. His trilogy To the Ends of the Earth, which comprises Rites of Passage (1980), Close Quarters (1987) and Fire Down Below (1989), further explores his themes of the civilizing process and class consciousness, while the travelogue An Egyptian Journal (1985) shows his fascination for the ancient land and his journey there after he won the Nobel Prize in 1983. His famous quote about humanity, “Man produces evil as a bee produces honey,” speaks of his disbelief in the progress and the health of modern civilization and any stable notions of human progress. His Nobel Prize citation stated it was given “for his novels which, with the perspicuity of realistic narrative art and the diversity and universality of myth, illuminate the human condition in a world of today,” thus summarizing his lifelong mission as a writer. Golding’s themes are class consciousness, human society (particularly what happens to it in isolation), modern and postmodern trauma with respect to human dreams and aspirations, and, lastly, the entire notion of “civilization” itself. His fiction has been analyzed with recourse to anthropology, psychoanalysis, postmodernism, narratology, trauma studies, and queer scholarship. Critical commentary on Golding continues to grow, especially around LOTF, due to its continued relevance owing to themes of violence, totalitarianism, queer studies, and its apocalyptic vision. It should be stressed, however, that compared to LOTF, his only play, The Brass Butterfly (1958), his Poems (1934) and his other nonfiction, such as A Moving Target (1982) and The Hot Gates (1965), the three short narratives in The Scorpion God (1971), and even his posthumous The Double Tongue (1995), have received scant attention. Though the themes of the essential drama of human conflict played against the backdrop of morality, human choice, and postmodern trauma that remain foundational to human existence might be applied to any 20thcentury writer, they are particularly germane to Golding’s works.

2022 ◽  
Vol 2 ◽  
pp. 29-38
Andrea Borsari ◽  
Giovanni Leoni

The article consists of two parts. The first part (§§ 1–2) investigates the indiscriminate and absolute remembering and forgetting of everything, hypermnesia and amnesia as the extreme terms that research has used and uses for the different phenomena of memory, both in individuals and in social and political forms. In the face of these shifts it is thus indispensable to re-establish a critique of the paradoxical effects of memory aids and, at the same time, to seek new forms of remembrance that by mixing an experiential dimension and public sphere refocus the attention on the connection between latency, tension and experiential triggers of involuntary memory and on the ability to break through the fictions of collective memory. On this basis, the second part of the article (§§ 3–4) analyses how the experience of political and racial deportation during World War II drastically changed the idea of memorial architecture. More specifically, the analysis deals with a kind of memorial device that must represent and memorialise persons whose bodies have been deliberately cancelled. The aim is to present and analyse the artistic and architectonic efforts to refer to those forgotten bodies, on the one hand, and on the other hand to point out how for these new kind of memorials the body of the visitor is asked to participate, both physically and emotionally, in this somehow paradoxical search for lost bodies, offering oneself as a substitute.

Emeline Verna ◽  
Jean‐Marc Femolant ◽  
Michel Signoli ◽  
Caroline Costedoat ◽  
Laetitia Bouniol

2022 ◽  

John Steinbeck’s life was framed by global conflict. Born on 27 February 1902, in Salinas, California, he was twelve years old when World War I began and sixteen when Germany and the Allies signed an armistice bringing to cessation the “War to End All Wars.” Unfortunately, World War II began in 1939. Echoes of the rise of Adolf Hitler and threats of war occur throughout his early works, as in the journals accompanying The Grapes of Wrath (1939), in which he writes of the angst of his times, fearing the inevitably approaching conflict. When World War II came, he became involved in the wartime efforts, working as a correspondent for the New York Herald Tribune and experiencing the London Blitz, with sixty-six of his eighty-five dispatches gathered in Once There Was a War (1958). Recognizing Steinbeck’s expertise as a writer and desiring to enlist public support, the government commissioned him to write Bombs Away (1942), an account of a bomber team and its specially equipped plane. Hence, he observed American airmen as they trained and went into battle, flying on forays with them. Similarly, during the Vietnam War Newsday hired him as a war correspondent, and again he went to the front and into battle with the enlisted men, with his accounts collected in Letters to Alicia (1965). On the home front, the San Francisco News commissioned him to report on Dust Bowl migrants working as harvesters in California. Incensed by what he witnessed—the specter of starvation, babies and children dying, and malnutrition taking a toll on the very humanity of the migrants—he wrote The Harvest Gypsies (1936), background for The Grapes of Wrath. An early ecologist, Steinbeck loved the land, depicting the earth as a living, sensate character in The Grapes of Wrath—an elegiac mourning over its the desecration. Later, his nonfiction America and Americans (1966) decried pollution and the felling of redwood trees. Looking into the future with some hope but much trepidation, this work also addressed ethnic and racial prejudices, questionable politics, ageism and sexism, loss of ethical moorings. Believing his country to be infested with a deadly immorality, he warned Americans to root out this cancerous growth in order to survive. His last work of fiction, The Winter of Our Discontent (1961), carried these same concerns, with protagonist Ethan Allen Hawley portrayed as an Every American, who must rise above his failings. John Steinbeck died 20 December 1968, of congestive heart failure.

2022 ◽  

Evan S. Connell (b. 1924–d. 2013) was born in Kansas City, Missouri, and grew up there in a prosperous family with historical ties—reflected in his middle name, Shelby—to Confederate general Jo Shelby. Although his physician father expected his namesake son to join him in his medical practice, Connell, while at Dartmouth College, began to consider more creative options, including writing and making art. After a three-year stint in the U.S. Navy Air Corps during World War II—he never left the country—Connell began writing down his experiences and finished his undergraduate studies at the University of Kansas. On the Lawrence, Kansas, campus, he studied art and continued to write, under the tutelage of Ray B. West, who edited the Western Review. With aid from the G.I. Bill and encouragement from West, Connell successfully applied to Wallace Stegner’s first class of creative writing fellows at Stanford University. He spent another year in writing and art classes at Columbia University in New York. Ultimately, he saw more of a future in writing, though he kept up a practice of life drawing and painting for many years. Connell had an early run of published short stories, beginning in 1946. After a fallow period in California, Connell went to Paris in 1952, where he became acquainted with the founding editors of The Paris Review. The literary journal published three of Connell’s stories, including segments from Connell’s novel in progress, which eventually was titled Mrs. Bridge. By then, Connell had taken up residence in San Francisco. After rejection by several New York publishers, the Viking Press took on Connell, releasing a story collection in 1957 before cementing Connell’s reputation with Mrs. Bridge, a quietly evocative portrait of a prosperous, middle-American family, which became his most admired and lucrative work of fiction. Over the next five decades Connell veered into an extraordinary variety of works—fiction, nonfiction, history, and hybrid experiments that looked like epic poetry. This pattern of no pattern in the arc of Connell’s work, combined with his lack of interest in self-promotion, seemed to confuse the New York publishing world, and critics often cited his unpredictability as the cause of a kind of literary marginalization. His sprawling account of Custer at the Little Bighorn became hugely popular in the 1980s, raising his profile and reviving his reputation as a writer.

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