E ASIAN 55 Study Guide - Final Guide: Peace Preservation Law, Japanese Communist Party, Humanity Declaration

East Asian Languages and Literatures
Course Code
C H U D N O W, M.; L O N G, M.
Study Guide

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WWII Emperor System: The Emperor of Japan is the head of the Imperial Family and
is the ceremonial head of state of Japan's system of constitutional monarchy. Emperor is
known as heavenly sovereign and considered as obsolete. During WWII Japan was ruled
by the Showa Emperor, also known as Emperor Hirohito. Hirohito ruled from 1926 to
1989, and he led the Japanese during WWII until their defeat in 1945. Hirohito wanted to
turn Japan into a militarist country, a country who focuses on their resources for a better
military, and led the world war against the allied forces. After the world war, when Japan
surrendered to the allied forces, Hirohito renounced his humanity in his rescript called the
humanity declaration, to announce to people that he is not divine along with other
emperors who claimed themselves to be divine.
A Wife’s Letters was written in the general pattern in a genre of Japanese wartime
literature known as “behind the gun”.
Gyokusai means shattering like a broken jewel. Its idea is fighting to the end since
surrendering is not an option. In World War II Japan, it usually meant dying in the name
of the Emperor, particularly in battle. One of the most notorious method of Gyokusai is
“Banzai Charge”. When Japanese solders reminds the downside of the battle, they will
commit suicide mission to to surprise and overcome the American forces. ALL citizens of
Japan regardless of age or gender were expected to perform acts of Gyokusai in order to
defend their country using a strategy of pure attrition. This strategy was termed the “100
million gyokusai”, indicating the massive scale of deaths that would have occurred had
the US actually invaded.
The Farthest Edage of the Islands
Tenko is known as renunciation of Marxism happened between 1925 and 1945. It refers
to an ideological reversal and public denouncement of left wing beliefs and embracement
of the “national identity and community”.
The beginning of Tenko is marked by the testimonies made by two of the Japanese
Communist party leaders, Sano Manabu and Nabeyama Sadechika. These two leaders
who broke the Peace Preservation Law were the first to refute their political beliefs, after
which followed a massive country-wide scale of other members of the same Marxist
party partaking in the same recantation. Tenkō appears to be the predominant method by
which the differing interests of Marxism and nationalism reconciled in the early 20th
century Japan.
Benji (left wings) is the prototype of tenkosha, one who is a victim not only of police
duress but of an unsympathetic populace that appears capable of understanding only the
form-ultimate sacrifice-but not the motivation for his commitment. Tenko is the ultimate
reduction of politics to the human beinh, to the individual confronted with the freedom to
choose with responsibility
Reverse Course by the American Occupation was the policy change implemented by the
United States and the Allies onto Japan after World War II in attempt to restore the
nation’s devastated economy and prevent it from Communist occupation. There are two
main goals: the demilitarization of Japan was the elimination of the Japanese armed
forces, for the purpose of ensuring Japan would not embark on military adventurism, and
helping the Japanese economy grow and stabilize. Democratization was also seen to
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guarantee Japanese pacifism by eliminating the concentration of power exercised by a
small elite prior to and during the war
The atomic bomb is known as Hibakusha. It means “bomb-affected-people” and came
into use after the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945. Hibakusha is
highly controversial, one reason being the discrimination faced due to beliefs of radiation
illness being contagious like an infectious disease, rendering them “ineligible for work
and marriage”. Another controversial is should the government create a special healthcare
for Hibakusha since the Hibakusha Health Law was passed followed by the Law of
Special Measures for the A-Bomb Victims in 1968, it is hard to prove to the government
that he or she has been exposed to a high level of radiation. Hibakusha is not limited to
those outside Hiroshima and Nagasaki, or even Japan. It also applies to those Japanese
American who are given the same support from the Japanese government.
The term “victim consciousness” emerged post-World War II after the horror of atomic
bombings in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. It was used to describe how inhumane the
bombing was to innocent civilians of Japan and emphasized that they were victims of the
The Japanese postwar “economic miracle” was a period in time after World War II when
the economy boomed after intervention from the United States between the 1950 and
1980s. As the U.S. entered the Cold War against the Soviet Union, troops visited Japan in
order to spread American influence through the Pacific. Japan benefitted from America's
military protection, "which spared the government from high defense spendings". There
are few theores why it grow so fast which points to an internal revitalization of the
economy: civil organizations like the Ministry of International Trade and Industry worked
with the local business community to help plan out Japan’s future economic
development; domestic environment gave way for the growth; International conditions
were also favorable for internal economic growth
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