Japan’s Seven Postwar Decades

Seventy years have passed since the end of World War II. Here we review Japan’s postwar path, examine its place in today’s world, and consider its future prospects.

Hiroshima’s Transformation from Military Center to Symbol of Peace and Tool of DiplomacyShinoda Hideaki

The city of Hiroshima encountered an unspeakable fate as a staging ground for Japan’s war effort and has achieved impressive recovery as an inspirational icon of peace. Hiroshima’s nuclear victimization is more pertinent than ever as Japanese seek to come to terms with their wartime past. The author examines that pertinence in the context of Japan’s postwar pacifism.
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A Revisionist History of Postwar PopWajima Yūsuke

In the public imagination, the pop hits of the Occupation years epitomize a brand-new culture of freedom and democracy. But a closer look at the roots of Japan’s early postwar pop scene reveals a far more complex interaction of influences and ideologies.
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When Will the “Postwar” End? Japanese Youth in Search of a FutureFuruichi Noritoshi

Japanese teenagers and young adults are remarkably content with their lives, in spite—or perhaps because—of the uncertain future they face. Sociologist Furuichi Noritoshi makes the case that the nation has betrayed its young people by artificially extending the “postwar” economy instead of adapting to the realities of a post-postwar world.
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Lessons from the Japanese Miracle: Building the Foundations for a New Growth ParadigmOkazaki Tetsuji

The postwar Japanese “miracle” has lost much of its luster since the 1990s, when the economy fell into a protracted post-bubble slump. Okazaki Tetsuji offers a fresh historical perspective on the structural and institutional factors that drove high-paced economic growth for close to a half-century and examines their implications for Japanese economic policy going forward.
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Japan and South Korea: Time to Build a New RelationshipKimura Kan

In addition to being the seventieth anniversary of the end of World War II, 2015 marks the fiftieth anniversary of the normalization of ties between Japan and South Korea. The half century since 1965 has brought major changes in international relations, and the old bilateral framework is no longer functioning properly. Korea specialist Kimura Kan offers an overview of the problems and some ideas for mending the relationship.
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