Just as postwar writers and filmmakers memorialized the War of Resistance by turning a critical eye towards China itself, the Chinese news media similarly sharpened its focus on domestic developments immediately after the war. Lanham, Md. Fairbank, eds. Band Berkeley: University of California Press, ; T. First, articles about Japan frequently displayed fears of renewed conflict in East Asia. Having been conditioned by fourteen years of conflict with Japan and additional weeks or months of Japanese policing beyond August , Chinese readers readily envisaged the resumption of Sino- Japanese hostilities.
For discussion of the phenomenon in the retrocession of postwar Taiwan, see Steven E. See, for instance, Zhonghua Xueyishe, eds.
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For Chinese individuals, particularly those tied to the textile and industrial sectors, the War of Resistance had offered an object lesson in the bonds between zaibatsu industrial conglomerates and the Japanese military. Third, postwar Chinese journalism persistently raised doubts about the Japanese character.
Thus, Chinese journalists agreed that even Japanese cooperation on issues such as disarmament masked designs of an aggressive revival. X, The long and dull International Military Tribunal for the Far East--ostensibly an ideal forum for grievances over war atrocities--generated few revelations, and outrage over the Rape of Nanking was not frequently expressed in print. Regardless of ideology, virtually all of the Chinese press attended faithfully to the anniversaries from the War of Resistance. On each July 7 the anniversary of the Japanese invasion of China at the Marco Polo Bridge and September 18 the anniversary of the Manchurian incident , the press--whether independent or Party-controlled--performed a retrospective function.
Sloane Associates, and Robert B.
Many thanks to Charles Musgrove for sharing with the author an updated version of the above conference paper. Soong Papers newly opened , Box 61, File Figure 1. Courtesy Shanghai Municipal Library. This show of unanimity on the subject of Japan suggests that amid the vast spectrum of disagreements rending Chinese society in the late s, anti-Japanese sentiment was unique in its unifying potential.
The popular press in Shanghai thus provides an abundant spectrum of insights into how Chinese elites perceived postwar Japan. Jianwen, Vol. Other periodicals, like Jin Ri Today , were short-lived but spectacular pictorials. Most magazines took a moderate political outlook, aiming to capture the broadest possible market. Magazines like Zhongguo Shenghuo China Life used English captions to entice 23 Most of the magazines cited in this article were consulted at the Shanghai Municipal Library, where they are open to researchers. For circulation figures, see China Weekly Review, Dec.
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Virginia: George C. Marshall Foundation, , As befitting a period of sporadic censorship, magazines frequently balanced their cutting criticisms of government policy with expressions of nationalistic pride. Even magazines that proudly displayed evidence of patronage from the Guomindang, such as Da Hua Great China Pictorial , featured cartoons and woodcuts that savaged government ineptitude and avarice, using the graphic arts as a forum for literally unspeakable criticisms.
The issue of reparations from Japan was a key to focusing Chinese energies on Japan in the postwar years. Chinese efforts to secure cultural reparations from Japan played an important, if insufficiently acknowledged, role in Sino-Japanese relations after the war. As the question of cultural reparations wound its way through the American occupation bureaucracy, Chinese press reports raised the expectations of elite Chinese for the return of precious artifacts.
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II March : In the wake of the Japanese collapse, Chinese scholars and intellectuals aligned swiftly around the banner of cultural reparations from Japan. Amid the malaise and frustrated hopes of autumn , Chinese art curators and literati staked out their support for a reparations regime, pressuring Guomindang foreign affairs officers and maddening the United States occupation authorities in Japan.
In a December request to the American Embassy in Chongqing, one group of Chinese elites requested immediate entry to Japan, seeking access to a broad range of cultural goods for return to China. The broad goals of the mission reveal Chinese expectations in startling terms, for the scope of their claims was not limited to materials plundered from China in the eight years of Resistance War.
These might be subject to claim or might be taken as part of an indemnity payment or might be paid for outright. Li, a Harvard Ph. After the war, Chinese scholars were starved for books with which to replenish university libraries destroyed, dispersed, or plundered by Japan.
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According to Nationalist sources, , volumes and the entire Oriental Library were destroyed by Japanese incendiary bombs in The new American administration in Japan, however, appeared taken aback by the Chinese requests. Having ruled the Japanese archipelago for a scant ten weeks, General Douglas MacArthur mandated deliberate moves on the question of reparations. Furthermore, the U. For State Department officers and the new American administration in Tokyo, assuaging Chinese public opinion regarding cultural reparations from Japan remained a distant aim.
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