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History, Memory, and Politics in Postwar Japan

Iokibe Kaoru, Komiya Kazuo, Hosoya Yūichi, Miyagi Taizō, and the Tokyo Foundation for Policy Research’s Political and Diplomatic Review Project, editors
History, Memory, and Politics in Postwar Japan
ISBN: 978-1-62637-877-3
ISBN: 978-1-62637-885-8
2020/219 pages/LC: 2019042406
Published in association with the Japan Publishing Industry Foundation for Culture

"A good starting place for anyone seeking a better understanding of Japanese thinking on imperial and Second World War historical issues."—Joel Campbell, International Affairs

"History, Memory, & Politics in Postwar Japan is essential reading for anyone interested in Japan's wartime past, and how the country can move forward in the Asia Pacific."—


Memories can be shared—or contested. Japan and Korea, just one case in point, share centuries of intertwined history, the nature of which continues to be disputed, particularly with regard to World War II.

The authors of History, Memory, and Politics in Postwar Japan explore Japan's historical narratives, and their impact on both domestic politics and diplomatic relations, as they have evolved from 1946 to the present. Presenting the results of more than a decade of collaborative research, their book is a rich contribution to our understanding not only of Japanese politics, but also of how the historical narratives that we embrace have far-reaching consequences.


Iokibe Kaoru is professor in the Faculty of Law at the University of Tokyo Graduate Schools for Law and Politics. Komiya Kazuo is lecturer at Aoyama Gakuin, Komanazawa, and Senshu universities. Hosoya Yūichi is professor in Keio University’s Faculty of Law. Miyagi Taizō is professor in Sophia University's Faculty of Global Studies.


  • Preface—Hosoya Y.
  • Introduction—Iokibe K.
  • The Yoshido Shigeru Years: Coming to Terms with the Issue of Historical Memory—Takeda T.
  • The Satō Eisaku Years: Historical Memory in a Time of Rapid Economic Growth—Murai R.
  • The Nakasone Yasuhiro Years: Historical Memory in Foreign Policy—Satō S.
  • The Rift Between Okinawa and the Japanese Mainland: Historical Memory and Political Space—Taira Y.
  • Is Reconciliation Possible? The Outlook for Japan-China, Japan-Korea, and Japan-US Relations—Hosoya Y. et al.
  • Historical Memory and International Relations in East Asia: The Abe Statement in Retrospect—Hosoya Y. et al.
  • Historical Memory and International History: A Guide for Further Reading—Hosoya Y.
  • Key Sources on the Postwar Era—Komiya K.
  • Postscript—Miyagi T.
  • Appendix: The Murayama Statement.
  • Appendix: The Koizumi Statement.
  • Appendix: The Abe Statement.
  • Appendix: Postwar Prime Ministers.