Dissolution of Nationalism and Development of Internationalism, 1983-1993
The contents of Japanese history textbooks keep changing. The following two sections will focus on the second finding of this study, a new movement toward "transnationalism" after the mid-1980s. Japanese history education was less ethnocentric in these periods, because the internationalization of Japanese society required multi-national point of views in education. During this period, there is the birth of the new "nationally defined historiographical consciousness" in Japan. It is important to note that this consciousness tries to make the contents of textbooks as objective as possible, and required that "any person who belongs to any nation would write historical events in a similar way" in textbooks.
Also, it is important that this phenomenon occurs after the mid-1980s. There are two motives for this phenomenon. One is the mutual monitoring between nation-states, and the other is the democratic and pacifist movements inside Japan. The discussion of the history of the nation could not remain a merely internal affair after the mid-1980s, because of the internationalization caused by a great advancement of information media and transportation. The most significant event caused by the mutual monitoring between nation-states was the "Aggression-Advancement" debate in 1982. Postwar Japanese nationalism was conveyed overseas and criticized as a result.
This process was occasioned by criticism of textbooks by the financial world in Japan between the end of the 1970s to 1981. People in the Japanese financial world tended to be proud of themselves after rapid growth of the Japanese economy during the late 1960s and the 1970s. Their pride in economic success was closely related with their national identity as Japanese. They demanded that Japanese textbooks put more emphasis on the value of loyalty to the country. Their textbook criticism was called the "second campaign against slanted textbooks."73） Censoring opinions to have "aggression" against the continent rewritten as "advancement" were given early in the 1980s.
In June, 1982, one Japanese newspaper reported the existence of such censoring opinions by the Ministry of Education. Following this report, China and South Korea protested to the Japanese government that such censorship would distort history. As a result, Kiichi Miyazawa, who was the secretary-general of the cabinet at that time, promised corrections in the textbooks on China and South Korea. The passage "national feelings of neighboring countries should be considered" was added to the Study Guidelines in Japan.
The "Aggression-Advancement" debate influenced the situation in Japan. Because of diplomatic pressures from China and South Korea, the Ministry of Education could do nothing but open a part of the cases of authorization in 1982 and 1983 fiscal year to the public. Moreover, the textbook writers also took the plunge and opened the censoring opinions they had received to the public through the publications from the Japan Allied Labor Union of Publishers. As a result, attentions from ordinary people were focused on to the censorship by the Ministry of Education.74）
The second motive to cause the transformation of Japanese textbooks in the 1980s was that the trend occurred among Japanese people to consider many cabinet ministers' speeches based on their superficial recognition of prewar Japan to be "problematic" and to accuse them. For example, in September, 1986, Masayuki Fujio, the Minister of Education in the Nakasone Cabinet at that time, created a hot discussion by expressing his recollection of the prewar history.75） Minister Fujio recalled the annexation of Korea in a magazine by saying that "the annexation was approved by the formal and substantial mutual agreement between Japan and Korea. There were some responsibilities also on the Korean side."76） Many Japanese attacked this version, and he was dismissed by the Prime Minister three days after expressing his opinion. Continuing in this vein, five congressmen in the minister class lost their positions because of their "problematic" speech during ten years after 1986.
In other words, the new generation of Japanese people who had experienced democratic education in their youth began to occupy important political, economic, and social positions at that time. Also, the mass media in Japan helped the new generation to criticize the old generation of Japanese, by relating with the media in China and South Korea in the progress of the internationalization or so-called globalization. This new trend was obviously different from the one in the former age. Cabinet ministers who had received the education at the prewar days did not need to reflect on their historical views until the mid-1980s. However, the new trend in which their recollections were considered to be problematic was generated under the process of internationalization of Japan. In the first campaign of the "deplorable textbook issue" in the 1950s, the people who opposed national intervention in the education initiated by the Democratic Party were powerless in fact. However, the influences from two different sides, inside and outside of Japan, helped the producers of textbooks to speak out more in the 1980s.
Therefore, the censoring opinions by the Ministry of Education had to change. The changes appeared in the descriptions of Japanese rule in Korea. The opinion "the people were levied based on the National Mobilization Order," was withdrawn at this time. Instead, the Ministry of Education started emphasizing that they were levied by "free applications."
[Original text] Japan applied the Mobilization Order based on the National General Mobilization Law to Korea, and brought Korean people to Japan forcibly with various methods. The number exceeded 1,500,000. Also, 70,000 workers were brought from China forcibly at this time. They were all forced to work in the places with severe tasks and risks, such as the mines, the coal mines, and the dam construction sites, etc., and many of them were killed or injured. Moreover, nearly 5,000,000 people were mobilized in Korea. In addition, the number of the persons, who had been dispatched to the various places in the south as soldiers or civilian employees exceeded 370,000.
[Censoring opinion] Submit the sources of "1,500,000," "70,000," "almost 5,000,000," and "370,000." As for forcible bringing of Korean people to Japan, the application of the Mobilization Order was after 1944. Free applications were conducted after 1939, and official mediations were conducted after 1941. It cannot be said that free applications were forcible. In the book written by Park Kyongsik, too, it is sure the number was to be written as 720,000.
[Sample book] Japan brought Korean people to Japan forcibly by applying the Mobilization Order based on the National General Mobilization Law to Korea. The number reached almost 700,000. Also, nearly 40,000 workers were brought from China forcibly at this time. They were all forced to work in the places with severe tasks and risks, such as the mines, the coal mines, and the dam construction sites, etc., and many of them were killed or injured. Moreover, nearly 5,000,000 people were mobilized in Korea. In addition, the number of the persons, who had been dispatched to the various places in south as civilian employees reached more than 320,000.77）
Now, the Ministry
of Education could not praise the validity of the "Great
Japan Empire," and the textbook authorization came to focus
mainly on the number of people who had been brought to Japan.
Although the Ministry of Education tended to minimize the Japanese
role, the stage for Japanese people to examine their history scientifically
In the following, I intend to take up the descriptions of the "annexation of Korea" in World History from Yamakawa Publishing. When Japan as a modern nation-state established relations with other countries, Japan's first object was the Korean peninsula located geographically close to Japan. Therefore, the history of the relation between Japan and Korea had been described from the 1950s version of textbooks. The history textbooks published by the 1970s had little detailed information on the circumstances in which Japan had expanded into the Korean peninsula in the prewar days. Accounts of this topic in the versions of the 1990s increased up to four times or more of those of the 1950s versions. When we see the descriptions of the modern history of the relation between Japan and Korea in textbooks, it is noticeable that the amounts of the descriptions continuously increased with time.
|History of the relation between Japan and Korea from the Meiji Restoration to 1945|
(254-255) After the Restoration, Japan had
requested Korea to open the country
world. However, Japan thought that
dangerous to put Korea under the rule
weak Qing, because Russia had gone
Japan was about to make Korea an independent
country, concluded the Jemulpo Treaty
Korea in 1876, and settled the independence
of Korea and opening Pusan Port. Since
the trade of Japan developed, and a
market was monopolized. On the other
in Qing, the atmosphere to request
of the Korean market and the reconfirmation
of the suzerainty had strengthened
1880. Before long, the commercial supremacy
of Japan was expelled from Korea due
private duel of the royal family in
Japan, which worried about this situation,
opened the war with Qing by taking
of the Tonghaktang Rebellion. The army
Qing exposed its weakness to the Japanese
army which had modernized equipment.
transferred Liao Dong Peninsula and
to Japan, and admitted the independence
Korea by the Shimonoseki Treaty. Soon
became a protectorate of Japan, became
part of the Japanese Empire, and was
by Japan until 1945.
(263) Soon Japan took advantage of weakening of Korea at the Yi dynasty, and pressed Korea politically and economically. In 1890, Japan annexed Korea, and built a strong base in Manchuria too.
(242) After the Restoration, Japan had requested
Korea to open the country to the world.
oppose Russia's going southward, Japan
an effort to make Korea an independent
free from the rule by weak Qing. Because
Qing had opposed this movement, Japan
about to lose its economic position
market. However, Japan opened the war
Qing by taking advantage of the Tonghaktang
Rebellion, and defeated Qing by using
equipment (1894-95). Qing requested
with Japan in Shimonoseki. Japan received
Liao Dong Peninsula and Taiwan, and
Qing admit the independence of Korea.
(249) Soon Japan took advantage of weakening of Korea at the Yi dynasty, and pressed Korea politically and economically. In 1890, Japan annexed Korea, and built a strong base in Manchuria too.
collision of the interest between Japan
and Qing caused the Sino-Japanese
War in Korea. Originally, Korea was subordinate
to the Qing dynasty,
while associating closely with Japan.
However, Korea was not
ready to open the country easily to follow
its suzerain state,
the Qing dynasty, and had not accepted
the demand by Japan to
open the country to the world. After
the Restoration, Japan had
requested Korea to open the country in
order to secure Japan,
and to built the market for Japanese
products in Korea. Japan
wished for Korea to become an independent
nation free from the
rule by the Qing dynasty. In 1875, Japan
opened Korea to the
world by taking the opportunity of the
Kanghwa Island Incident,
and concluded the treaty.* However, because
the Qing opposed
this movement, and because there were
factional disputes** inside
Korea, conflicts frequently arose between
Japan and Qing. In
1894, the Rebellion by Tonghaktang, the
secret society, occurred
by chance in the Chonra District and
this became the chance for
both Japan and Qing to begin a full-scale
war. After the Meiji
Restoration, Japan had experienced a
rapid modernization, and
had established a system which was several
steps more advanced
than that of the Qing dynasty. Therefore,
Japan broke down the
army of Qing at once, and made peace
with the Qing dynasty in
Shimonoseki. Japan made the Qing dynasty
admit that Korea was
an independent country. Japan inherited
Liao Dong Peninsula and
Taiwan from Qing, and attracted the attention
of the Powers.
(285) Soon Japan took advantage of weakening of Korea at the Yi dynasty, and pressed Korea politically and economically. In 1890, Japan annexed Korea, and built a strong base in Manchuria too.
of the necessity for markets in foreign countries, Japan advanced
to the continent. Japan tried to make Korea become an independent
country free from Qing, after concluding a treaty of amity with
Korea.(1) Therefore, Japan caused conflicts with Qing,
and the Tonghaktang Rebellion (1894)(2) finally caused
the Sino-Japanese War (1894-95). Newly born Japan broke Qing
as a large country, and made Qing admit the independence of Korea
in the Shimonoseki Treaty.(3)
(265) Japan, which had obtained the foothold in south Manchuria and Korea, started active advancement as industrial revolution was advanced, and annexed Korea in 1910.
(273) Korea having regarded Qing as its suzerain did not open the country to the new government of Japan easily, although Korea had been associated with Japan during the Edo Era. However, Japan succeeded in making Korea open the country to the world, and concluded the treaty by taking the opportunity of the Kanghwa Island Incident in 1875.* Because Qing opposed this movement, and because there were factional disputes inside Korea,** conflicts between Japan and Qing arose frequently. Japan and Qing finally started the war by taking advantage of the Rebellion by Tonghaktang, the religious secret society, which happened in the Chonra District in 1894 (the Sino-Japanese War (1894-95)). Japan, benefiting from the policies to enrich the country and strengthen the military after the Meiji Restoration, broke the army of Qing at once, and concluded the reconciliatory treaty next year (the Shimonoseki Treaty). Japan obtained the clue of the advancement to Korea by making Qing admit the independence of Korea. Also, Japan inherited Liao Dong Peninsula, Taiwan, and Peng Hu Island from Qing, and the attention of the Powers turned to Japan.
(288) Soon Japan pressed Korea politically and economically by taking advantage of the declining fortune of the Yi dynasty, and annexed Korea in 1910 (the Annexation of Korea).
First of all, it
is remarkable that there was very little description on the relation
between Japan and Korea in the textbooks published in the 1950s.
But after economic exchange between the two countries deepened
in the 1970s (through the normalization of Japan-South Korea diplomatic
relation in 1965), the "past" relation between them
came to be narrated in more detail gradually, as Japan and South
Korea came to relate more intimately.
The phrase "advancement to the continent" was included in the 1964 and 1973 version. However, in the 1983 version, which was edited after the "Advancement-Aggression" debate, the phrase was replaced by "aggression on the continent."
|History of the relation between Japan and Korea from the Meiji Restoration to 1945|
America and European countries urged Korea to open the country
to the world in the latter half of the 19th century, Korea refused
this and tried to maintain exclusionism. Japan approached Korea
by taking the opportunity of the Kanghwa Incident(1) in 1875, concluded the unequal Japan-Korea Amity Treaty (the Kanghwa Treaty)
in 1876, which included the consular jurisdiction etc., and made Korea
open their ports such as Pusan. Because Qing opposed this movement, and
because there were political struggles inside Korea, conflicts between
Japan and Qing deepened and caused the Sino-Japanese War (1894-95) starting
with the Kapo Farmers War (the Tonghaktang Rebellion) in 1894. The war
ended in the victory of Japan and the Shimonoseki Treaty was concluded
next year, by which Qing admitted the independence of Korea, cession of
Liao Dong Peninsula, Taiwan, and Peng Hu Island to Japan, payment of compensation,
and the privilege of Japan in the trade etc. Japan thereafter built the
foothold for aggression on the continent in Korea, and deepened conflicts with Russia, which aimed
at going south in East Asia.
(285) Korea after the Sino-Japanese War was aiming at substantial independence by changing the name of the country to Taehan, and the title of King to the Emperor in 1897. However, the violent acquisition of rights and interests by various foreign countries and political strife between a pro-Russian group and a pro-Japanese group by interference of Russia and Japan kept shaking Korea.
(286) Postwar Japan aimed at aggression on the continent, and annexed Korea in spite of ardent resistance of the Korean side in 1910 (the annexation of Korea).
(304-305) After being annexed to Japan, Korea was ruled by the Korean governor-general, and people's dissatisfaction had increased. On March 1, 1919, Korean people began a movement for the independence from Japan under the influence of the Russian Revolution or Woodrow Wilson's declaration of the Fourteen Points of Peace, which was repressed. This was called the 3.1 Movement (the Mansae Incident), and became the starting point of the Korean nationalist movement thereafter.
[Photograph] 3.1 Movement. This movement extended to the whole land, and was repeated until May. However, this movement was suppressed by the Japanese military and police, and a large number of people were killed and injured. This photograph shows the girl students demonstrating in Seoul (present Seoul was called Kyonsong under the rule of Japan).
In the 1983 version,
the Kanghwa Island Incident was explained in the following way:
"the Japanese warship maneuvering off the coast of Korea
collided with Korean forces." That is, harm by Japan came
to be emphasized here. What interfered in the political struggles
inside Korea was explained as "not only Russia but also Japan."
Also the photograph of the "3.1 Movement" which appeared
in textbooks for the first time, was accompanied with the information,
"This movement was suppressed by the Japanese military and
police, and a large number of people were killed and injured,"
which connoted a negative impression of Japan.
Moreover, the international protest in 1982 became a chance to increase joint researches, by which Japanese educators tried to verify historical relations between Japan and other Asian nations, especially between Japan and South Korea, after the mid-1980s.78） In such a way, a trend was approved in Japan, in which the speeches of many cabinet ministers concerning the prewar history were considered to be "problematic." This tendency continued in the 1990s. We can conclude that the "second campaign against slanted textbooks" was destroyed by re-examination of the history based on the global monitoring between nations and between individuals.
In other words, the description of history based on the Japanese ethnocentrism had changed in quality to more universal description gradually. The collision of nationalist claims caused an objective re-examination of existing ethnocentric nationalism. Such universal depictions can be thought to have more liberal characteristics. We can understand this phenomenon as a conversion of nationalism to "transnationalism" from a sociological aspect. According to Yasusuke Murakami, there are two kinds of boundaries that must be overcome to avoid conflicts between nations. The one is the visible boundaries such as barbed wire along national borders, border garrisons, exchange control laws, and passports. It is this type of visible boundary that people normally call a border. The other is the invisible boundaries. According to Murakami:
More important in a certain sense is the second kind, the invisible boundaries in our minds, which develop from such things as the unique structure of thought developed through child-rearing and language, the knowledge and contents of information produced by education, and the images handed down through the historical and literary classics. One could say that this is what we broadly call ethos and tradition. The first kind of boundary corresponds to territoriality and the second to cultural individuality.79）
Also, Murakami calls "transcending"
of these boundaries transnationalism and
points out that "since the horrors of
the two world wars, the arguments for a transnationalism
that takes peace as its objective have gradually
become influential." What we deal with
here is an example of the movement in Japan
which exceeds the "second boundary"
in Murakami's terms. This kind of historiographical
consciousness began to be approved in Japan
after the mid-1980s.