All posts tagged: History of Japan

Currently Reading: 「それでも、日本人は戦争を選んだ」by 加藤陽子

I have finally given up reading 「朝鮮開国と日清戦争」by Soki WATANABE because the more I read, the more difficult the book becomes. I was unlucky in my choice when I picked a History book, I should have bought a popular book written for a large public. Watanabe’s book was maybe too specialised for me. As I don’t renounce reading History books in Japanese, I picked another one: 「それでも、日本人は戦争を選んだ」by 加藤陽子 (かとう・ようこ). Yoko KATO is a professor at Tokyo University. Her field is the period spanning from the Russo-Japanese War to the Pacific War, but her speciality is centred on Japan’s diplomatic relations and military actions of the 30’s. Her book is divided into 5 chapters: Prologue: Let’s reflect upon Japan Modern History Chapter 1: First Sino-Japanese War Chapter 2: Russo-Japanese War Chapter 3: World War I Chapter 4: The Mukden Incident and the Second Sino-Japanese War Chapter 5: Pacific war The point of this book is to reflect upon Japan Modern History through the wars of this period. Why this book is easy to read? This book seems much …

Currently reading: 「朝鮮開国と日清戦争」by 渡辺惣樹

Some days ago, I saw this book piled up in a bookshop in Seoul: 「朝鮮開国と日清戦争 アメリカはなぜ日本を支持し、朝鮮を見限ったか」by 渡辺惣樹 (わたなべ・そうき) They have a decent selection of non-fiction books in Japanese, but not so much space that they would pile up a lot of titles. So naturally, my attention was drawn to this title. I am both interested in the Sino-Japanese war and Korea history, so it seemed that this book was for me. I must have spent 20 minutes, standing before it, wondering if I should buy it or not, for I was sure that I could not read it. Even if I hesitated a lot before buying it, it was still an impulse. I hadn’t gone there to buy a History book, and before seeing this book, I was not even thinking of reading one soon. If I were to start reading a History book in Japanese, this is what I should have done: I should have made some research on the internet before, find which books or authors were praised for being easy to read and …

NHK radio journal’s “シリーズ戦争を考える”: War orphan ~ 小倉勇さん

This week, the NHK radio journal has started a series to commemorate the end of the war. I listened to the first episode and, as usual, was totally unable to follow what was being said. I understood enough to know that a man in his 80’s (whose name is M. Ogura) was talking about his experience of American air raids. As I really wanted to hear his story, I listened to the episode several times and was finally able to understand enough to follow the narrative. When the NHK announcer speaks, I can follow, but sadly, I can’t understand well what M. Ogura says. But, as I really would like to be able to comprehend everything, I feel motivated to keep studying. This episode is called 終戦が地獄の始まりだった~戦争孤児・小倉勇さん and was launched for the commemoration of the end World War II in Asia, on August 15th. This episode is about 小倉勇さん(おぐら・いさむ)who is now 85 years-old, and is telling for the first time his experience of the war. Even if I listened to the interview/reportage several times, I still …