The Culture of Japanese Fascism

Author: Alan Tansman
Publisher: Duke University Press
ISBN: 0822390701
Format: PDF, ePub
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This bold collection of essays demonstrates the necessity of understanding fascism in cultural terms rather than only or even primarily in terms of political structures and events. Contributors from history, literature, film, art history, and anthropology describe a culture of fascism in Japan in the decades preceding the end of the Asia-Pacific War. In so doing, they challenge past scholarship, which has generally rejected descriptions of pre-1945 Japan as fascist. The contributors explain how a fascist ideology was diffused throughout Japanese culture via literature, popular culture, film, design, and everyday discourse. Alan Tansman’s introduction places the essays in historical context and situates them in relation to previous scholarly inquiries into the existence of fascism in Japan. Several contributors examine how fascism was understood in the 1930s by, for example, influential theorists, an antifascist literary group, and leading intellectuals responding to capitalist modernization. Others explore the idea that fascism’s solution to alienation and exploitation lay in efforts to beautify work, the workplace, and everyday life. Still others analyze the realization of and limits to fascist aesthetics in film, memorial design, architecture, animal imagery, a military museum, and a national exposition. Contributors also assess both manifestations of and resistance to fascist ideology in the work of renowned authors including the Nobel-prize-winning novelist and short-story writer Kawabata Yasunari and the mystery writers Edogawa Ranpo and Hamao Shirō. In the work of these final two, the tropes of sexual perversity and paranoia open a new perspective on fascist culture. This volume makes Japanese fascism available as a critical point of comparison for scholars of fascism worldwide. The concluding essay models such work by comparing Spanish and Japanese fascisms. Contributors. Noriko Aso, Michael Baskett, Kim Brandt, Nina Cornyetz, Kevin M. Doak, James Dorsey, Aaron Gerow, Harry Harootunian, Marilyn Ivy, Angus Lockyer, Jim Reichert, Jonathan Reynolds, Ellen Schattschneider, Aaron Skabelund, Akiko Takenaka, Alan Tansman, Richard Torrance, Keith Vincent, Alejandro Yarza

Kingdom of Beauty

Author: Kim Brandt
Publisher: Duke University Press
ISBN: 9780822340003
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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A Study of the Weatherhead East Asian Institute, Columbia University Kingdom of Beauty shows that the discovery of mingei (folk art) by Japanese intellectuals in the 1920s and 1930s was central to the complex process by which Japan became both a modern nation and an imperial world power. Kim Brandt’s account of the mingei movement locates its origins in colonial Korea, where middle-class Japanese artists and collectors discovered that imperialism offered them special opportunities to amass art objects and gain social, cultural, and even political influence. Later, mingei enthusiasts worked with (and against) other groups—such as state officials, fascist ideologues, rival folk art organizations, local artisans, newspaper and magazine editors, and department store managers—to promote their own vision of beautiful prosperity for Japan, Asia, and indeed the world. In tracing the history of mingei activism, Brandt considers not only Yanagi Muneyoshi, Hamada Shōji, Kawai Kanjirō, and other well-known leaders of the folk art movement but also the often overlooked networks of provincial intellectuals, craftspeople, marketers, and shoppers who were just as important to its success. The result of their collective efforts, she makes clear, was the transformation of a once-obscure category of pre-industrial rural artifacts into an icon of modern national style.

Japan s Holy War

Author: Walter Skya
Publisher: Duke University Press
ISBN: 9780822392460
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Japan’s Holy War reveals how a radical religious ideology drove the Japanese to imperial expansion and global war. Bringing to light a wealth of new information, Walter A. Skya demonstrates that whatever other motives the Japanese had for waging war in Asia and the Pacific, for many the war was the fulfillment of a religious mandate. In the early twentieth century, a fervent nationalism developed within State Shintō. This ultranationalism gained widespread military and public support and led to rampant terrorism; between 1921 and 1936 three serving and two former prime ministers were assassinated. Shintō ultranationalist societies fomented a discourse calling for the abolition of parliamentary government and unlimited Japanese expansion. Skya documents a transformation in the ideology of State Shintō in the late nineteenth century and the early twentieth. He shows that within the religion, support for the German-inspired theory of constitutional monarchy that had underpinned the Meiji Constitution gave way to a theory of absolute monarchy advocated by the constitutional scholar Hozumi Yatsuka in the late 1890s. That, in turn, was superseded by a totalitarian ideology centered on the emperor: an ideology advanced by the political theorists Uesugi Shinkichi and Kakehi Katsuhiko in the 1910s and 1920s. Examining the connections between various forms of Shintō nationalism and the state, Skya demonstrates that where the Meiji oligarchs had constructed a quasi-religious, quasi-secular state, Hozumi Yatsuka desired a traditional theocratic state. Uesugi Shinkichi and Kakehi Katsuhiko went further, encouraging radical, militant forms of extreme religious nationalism. Skya suggests that the creeping democracy and secularization of Japan’s political order in the early twentieth century were the principal causes of the terrorism of the 1930s, which ultimately led to a holy war against Western civilization.

The Fascist Effect

Author: Reto Hofmann
Publisher: Cornell University Press
ISBN: 0801456363
Format: PDF, ePub
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During the interwar period, Japanese intellectuals, writers, activists, and politicians, although conscious of the many points of intersection between their politics and those of Mussolini, were ambivalent about the comparability of Imperial Japan and Fascist Italy. In The Fascist Effect, Reto Hofmann uncovers the ideological links that tied Japan to Italy, drawing on extensive materials from Japanese and Italian archives to shed light on the formation of fascist history and practice in Japan and beyond. Moving between personal experiences, diplomatic and cultural relations, and geopolitical considerations, Hofmann shows that interwar Japan found in fascism a resource to develop a new order at a time of capitalist crisis. Japanese thinkers and politicians debated fascism as part of a wider effort to overcome a range of modern woes, including class conflict and moral degeneration, through measures that fostered national cohesion and social order. Hofmann demonstrates that fascism in Japan was neither a European import nor a domestic product; it was, rather, the result of a complex process of global transmission and reformulation. By focusing on how interwar Japanese understood fascism, Hofmann recuperates a historical debate that has been largely disregarded by historians, even though its extent reveals that fascism occupied a central position in the politics of interwar Japan. Far from being a vague term, as postwar historiography has so often claimed, for Japanese of all backgrounds who came of age from the 1920s to the 1940s, fascism conjured up a set of concrete associations, including nationalism, leadership, economics, and a drive toward empire and a new world order.

Bad Water

Author: Robert Stolz
Publisher: Duke University Press
ISBN: 0822376504
Format: PDF
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Bad Water is a sophisticated theoretical analysis of Japanese thinkers and activists' efforts to reintegrate the natural environment into Japan's social and political thought in the late nineteenth century and early twentieth. The need to incorporate nature into politics was revealed by a series of large-scale industrial disasters in the 1890s. The Ashio Copper Mine unleashed massive amounts of copper, arsenic, mercury, and other pollutants into surrounding watersheds. Robert Stolz argues that by forcefully demonstrating the mutual penetration of humans and nature, industrial pollution biologically and politically compromised the autonomous liberal subject underlying the political philosophy of the modernizing Meiji state. In the following decades, socialism, anarchism, fascism, and Confucian benevolence and moral economy were marshaled in the search for new theories of a modern political subject and a social organization adequate to the environmental crisis. With detailed considerations of several key environmental activists, including Tanaka Shōzō, Bad Water is a nuanced account of Japan's environmental turn, a historical moment when, for the first time, Japanese thinkers and activists experienced nature as alienated from themselves and were forced to rebuild the connections.

Post Fascist Japan

Author: Laura Hein
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
ISBN: 135002581X
Format: PDF
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In late 1945 local Japanese turned their energies toward creating new behaviors and institutions that would give young people better skills to combat repression at home and coercion abroad. They rapidly transformed their political culture-policies, institutions, and public opinion-to create a more equitable, democratic and peaceful society. Post-Fascist Japan explores this phenomenon, focusing on a group of highly educated Japanese based in the city of Kamakura, where the new political culture was particularly visible. The book argues that these leftist elites, many of whom had been seen as 'the enemy' during the war, saw the problem as one of fascism, an ideology that had succeeded because it had addressed real problems. They turned their efforts to overtly political-legal systems but also to ostensibly non-political and community institutions such as universities, art museums, local tourism, and environmental policies, aiming not only for reconciliation over the past but also to reduce the anxieties that had drawn so many towards fascism. By focusing on people who had an outsized influence on Japan's political culture, Hein's study is local, national, and transnational. She grounds her discussion using specific personalities, showing their ideas about 'post-fascism', how they implemented them and how they interacted with the American occupiers.

Sport Literature Society

Author: Alexis Tadié
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1134920245
Format: PDF
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Sport studies and sports history have witnessed a recent substantial increase in publications. However, the relationship between literature and sport has been little explored. Sport, Literature, Society looks at a wide variety of case studies ranging from Japan to England, from India to Australia and covers sports as diverse as cycling, football, wrestling and boxing. It concentrates on historical perspectives. The contributors are all academics of international reputation and include historians of sport and literary scholars. Literature may shape our perceptions and reactions to sport as much as sport may inform our reading. As mimetic practice, as aesthetic object, as imaginative release, sport is analogous to literature and the other arts; at the same time, it can become the subject of literary, visual or musical elaborations. Literature often conceptualises the place and role of sport in culture and society. Indeed, sport inhabits literature in ways that have not been adequately studied. Sport studies have investigated the relationships between sport and society, education, gender, nation, and class. To look again at these relationships through the prism of literature enables us to change our focus and to assess the centrality of sport in culture. This book was published as a special issue of the International Journal of the History of Sport.

Revolutionary Nativism

Author: Maggie Clinton
Publisher: Duke University Press
ISBN: 0822373033
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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In Revolutionary Nativism Maggie Clinton traces the history and cultural politics of fascist organizations that operated under the umbrella of the Chinese Nationalist Party (GMD) during the 1920s and 1930s. Clinton argues that fascism was not imported to China from Europe or Japan; rather it emerged from the charged social conditions that prevailed in the country's southern and coastal regions during the interwar period. These fascist groups were led by young militants who believed that reviving China's Confucian "national spirit" could foster the discipline and social cohesion necessary to defend China against imperialism and Communism and to develop formidable industrial and military capacities, thereby securing national strength in a competitive international arena. Fascists within the GMD deployed modernist aesthetics in their literature and art while justifying their anti-Communist violence with nativist discourse. Showing how the GMD's fascist factions popularized a virulently nationalist rhetoric that linked Confucianism with a specific path of industrial development, Clinton sheds new light on the complex dynamics of Chinese nationalism and modernity.

Grassroots Fascism

Author: Yoshiaki Yoshimi
Publisher: Columbia University Press
ISBN: 0231538596
Format: PDF
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Grassroots Fascism profiles the Asia Pacific War (1937–1945)—the most important though least understood experience of Japan's modern history—through the lens of ordinary Japanese life. Moving deftly from the struggles of the home front to the occupied territories to the ravages of the front line, the book offers rare insights into popular experiences from the war's troubled beginnings through Japan's disastrous defeat in 1945 and the new beginning it heralded. Yoshimi Yoshiaki mobilizes diaries, letters, memoirs, and government documents to portray the ambivalent position of ordinary Japanese as both wartime victims and active participants. He also provides penetrating accounts of the war experiences of Japan's minorities and imperial subjects, including Koreans and Taiwanese. His book challenges the idea that the Japanese people operated as a mere conduit for the military during the war, passively accepting an imperial ideology imposed upon them by the political elite. Viewed from the bottom up, wartime Japan unfolds as a complex modern mass society, with a corresponding variety of popular roles and agendas. In chronicling the diversity of wartime Japanese social experience, Yoshimi's account elevates our understanding of "Japanese Fascism." In its relation of World War II to the evolution—and destruction—of empire, it makes a fresh contribution to the global history of the war. Ethan Mark's translation supplements the Japanese original with explanatory notes and an in-depth introduction that situates the work within Japanese studies and global history.