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The West and the Dissemination of Japanese Historical Revisionism


Focusing on the specific case of activities of Japanese historical revisionists in Europe and North America, this chapter looks at the dynamics of Western involvement in the contestation of trauma in East Asia. Although East Asia’s memory battles are generally fought within the countries of the region, some conflicts are internationalized on a larger scale, involving North American and European societies. Apart from the Vietnam War, which holds a singular place in post-1945 international history, most of the memory conflicts developing beyond East Asia are, not surprisingly, about the Pacific War, a regional war that became global after 1941, triggering global trauma. Issues such as the contested commemoration of the nuclear bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, or discussion about the Japanese Army’s POWs are the most well-known illustrations of this globalized contested trauma. But there is also, increasingly, a Western participation in memory controversies relating to events that involved mainly, if not only, East Asian actors, as the issue around statues of Korean ‘comfort women’ in American cities illustrated.
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hal-04062609 , version 1 (07-04-2023)



Karoline Postel Vinay. The West and the Dissemination of Japanese Historical Revisionism. Tina Burrett, Jeff Kingston (eds). Routledge Handbook of Trauma in East Asia, Routledge, pp.62-72, 2023, 9781032274218. ⟨10.4324/9781003292661-7⟩. ⟨hal-04062609⟩
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